Words of Witness, a documentary on a young female journalist reporting the Egyptian revolution is going on tour in the USA. First in film festivals in California and in New York, then through a crowd-funding initiative they hope to raise funds to go to even more university campuses to share the story of youth, revolution, gender roles and new media.
Words of Witness is a feature-length documentary that follows Heba, a 22 year-old journalist, as she navigates Egypt’s Revolution. Every time Heba heads out to cover the historical events shaping her country’s future, her mother is compelled to remind her, “I know you are a journalist, but you’re still a girl!” Defying cultural and gender norms and family expectations, Heba takes to the streets to report on an Egypt in turmoil, using tweets, texts, and Facebook posts. Her coming of age, political awakening and the disillusionment that follows mirrors that of a nation seeking the freedom to shape its own destiny, dignity and democracy. Described as “RAW AND FASCINATING” by the Wall Street Journal, the film was shot on site in Egypt as the historical events surrounding the revolution unfolded.
Words of Witness has teamed up with Rock the Vote, an initiative aiming to engage and build political power for young people in the United States to screen the video in at least 50 different college campuses. To fund the tours and campaigns around the video and political participation they've set up a crowd-funding campaign to raise 12,000 USD. They have until July 11th to reach their financial goal and with the funds not only will they be able to tour and engage the audiences in these locations through lively panel discussions after the screening, lesson plans to provide the student viewer with a historical, political and social context to better understand where they might begin take action in their own lives and that of their communities will also get created if they reach their funding goal.
With last year having been declared “the year of the protester”, with the Occupy movement growing both in the United States and around the world and as the 2012 US presidential elections coming up, the movie tour will come at just the right time to open the discussion on the Egyptian revolution, the power of the voice of the people, and how democratic societies evolve.
The documentary, directed by Mai Iskander premiered worldwide at the Berlinale. And will be shown in the US in the Los Angeles Film Festival in California on Sunday, June 17th and on Wednesday, June 20th. In New York, it will be shown at the Human Rights Watch Film Festival on Saturday, June 23rd; Sunday, June 24th and on Tuesday, June 26th 2012. Consider making a donation to their Kickstarter campaign for the documentary to visit 50 other college campuses as well. Follow Words of Witness on Facebook as well as on Twitter (@wordsofwitness) to stay updated.