“ROADMAP TO APARTHEID”
Ubuntu Films, Produced and directed by ANA NOGUIERA & ERON DAVIDSON,
narrated by ALICE WALKER, (2012, 94 minutes)
WHEN: Sunday July 21, 2013 1:15PM
WHERE: Community Church NY Gallery Room, 28 East 35th St. btwn Park & Madison Aves.
ADMISSION: Free, donations appreciated
In 2006 Jimmy Carter published his book “Palestine; Peace Or Apartheid”. The book created quite a controversy, less for its content than for its title and the provocative use of the word “apartheid”. It infuriated supporters of Israel in the U.S. while the critics of Israel were delighted that such a prestigious American figure would be that bold to even make members of his own political party uneasy. But the comparison of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to South Africa had been circulating for some time and had its origins in Israel itself.
In this award-winning documentary, the first-time directors, South African Ana Noguiera and Israeli Eron Davidson, take a detailed look at the apartheid analogy now commonly used to describe the conflict. Narrated by Alice Walker, Roadmap to Apartheid is as much a historical document of the rise and fall of apartheid in South Africa, as it is a film about why many Palestinians feel they are living in an apartheid system today, and why an increasing number of people around the world agree with them.
While not perfect, the apartheid analogy is a useful framework by which to educate people on the complex issues facing Israelis and Palestinians. The film delves into those issues, comparing the many similar laws and tools used by both Israel and apartheid-era South Africa. The audience will see what life is like for Palestinians in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and inside Israel while gaining a deeper understanding of the conflict with the help of respected analysts on the subject. Combined with archival material and anecdotes from South Africans, the film forms a complete picture as to why the analogy is being used with increasing frequency and potency.
The filmmakers cover nearly everything: siege mentality colonialism, forced migration, checkpoints, passes, “foreign natives”, “present absentees”, partition and proxy rule, bombing and boycotts, bulldozers and Bantustans. That the film explores parallels not only between the physical aspects of apartheid, which are many and varied, but the psychological dimensions, for colonizer and colonized alike, is important. The most powerful moments of the film, in which the strongest links between the two forms of apartheid are made, are those which depict an emotional experience common to both struggles
The film is packed with insights from the world’s leading authorities on both South African and Israeli apartheid, including Diana Buttu, Na’eem Jeenah, Jeff Halper, Yasmin Sooka, Ali Abunimah, the late Dennis Brutus, Salim Vally, Ziad Abbas, Eddie Makue, Angela Godfrey-Goldstein, Phyllis Bennis and others.
In short, it is a powerful and moving documentary, technically very well crafted, which strikes an aesthetic balance between the factual information presented and a poignant portrayal of human struggle.
Ana Nogueira is a journalist and first-time filmmaker. She worked as a producer for the national daily radio and TV news program Democracy Now! in the United States for four years and later as a correspondent for the show. She is a founding member of the New York City Independent Media Center, its newspaper The Indypendent, and the global Indymedia network. Nogueira was born in South Africa and lives in the United States.
Eron Davidson is a long-time media activist and filmmaker. He has produced several short videos that have helped to galvanize excitement for various community organizing projects in the United States. Davidson was born in Israel, and lives in the United States.
Alice Walker – Novelist, poet and activist. She is best known for her Pulitzer Prize winning book The Color Purple.