On April 5, 2018, The Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University held a conference on Citizenship, Gender, and Film and was attended by NIRV Filmmakers, Kiki, Mohammad and Abdi.
“Who Belongs? Global Citizenship and Gender in the 21st Century” opened with a discussion about questions of citizenship and gender as expressed through film.
Three prominent filmmakers and a film critic (listed below) discussed the portrayed (and real) experiences of women, men, and people of color as they seek the most fundamental rights of citizenship. Through a series of presentations and film clips, the speakers explored how the transformative power of masterful storytelling can challenge perceptions and expectations, invite empathy and understanding, inspire dialogue, and offer insight into what it means to be a member of a community.
- María Agui Carter, Writer/Director; Assistant Professor, Department of Visual and Media Arts, Emerson College
- Heather Courtney, Documentary Filmmaker
- Cynthia López, Former Commissioner, City of New York Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment; Former Executive Vice President and Co–Executive Producer, American Documentary and POV
Moderated by Claudia Puig, President, Los Angeles Film Critics Association; Former Lead Film Critic, USA Today
“Who Belongs? Global Citizenship and Gender in the 21st Century” discusses The very meaning of citizenship at local, national, and global levels is in flux in most countries and continents. More than 65 million human beings are currently displaced from their homes, while even in countries where armed conflict is not prevalent, separatist and nationalist movements have reshaped policy. Gender—in all its forms—is essential to any analysis of these trends and to our understandings of citizenship around the world, although it is often overlooked in public debate.
Citizenship means more than just formal membership in nation-states; it means belonging in communities defined in part by gender. Our conference will explore these themes through three panels: In the first, policymakers and scholars will examine legal constructs and how laws and nations define and redefine gendered citizenship. The second panel will assemble human rights and immigration practitioners and activists to explore the balance and tension between the need for borders and security by individual nations and the gendered complexities of lives lived across those borders. A final panel will take stock of different expressions of gendered nationalism sweeping the globe.