Sunday, November 24, 2013, 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Of Greek origin the word means: the perfect, delicate, crucial moment; the fleeting rightness of time and place that creates the opportune atmosphere for action, words, or movement; also, weather.
„Jai Bhim Comrade“
Anand Patwardhan, IND 2011, 199 min, Language: Marathi and Hindi/Subtitles: English
„Jashn-e-Azadi“ (“How We Celebrate Freedom”)
Sanjay Kak, IND 2007, 138 min, Language: English, Urdu and Kashmiri/Subtitles: English
Rakesh Sharma, IND 2004, 149 min, Language: Hindi and Gujarati/Subtitles: English
organized by Khanabadosh
If recent global events, like the Occupy movement and the Springs in Arab nations, are anything to go by then it would seem that kairos, that crucial moment, that fleeting rightness of time and place for actions, words or movement is upon us. Historical, political and social contexts notwithstanding, strains of neo-fascism of all shapes, sizes, colours and varieties can be identified across the globe.
The idea of kairos holds true for India, now, more than ever before. The most divisive and eagerly awaited elections, in India, ostensibly the world’s biggest democracy, are around the corner. Although, there are never any straight answers vis-à-vis the (Indian) electoral system, it is quite apparent that the prime ministerial campaign of the Hindu right-wing leader, Narendra Modi, is gaining momentum as the country moves towards the general elections of May, 2014. For now, the task at hand in India, as also elsewhere, is to keep the unapologetic right-wing away from the seat of power by, among other things, voting against it.
- Gitanjali Dang
Jai Bhim Comrade
by Anand Patwardhank
For thousands of years India’s Dalits were abhorred as “untouchables” denied education and treated as bonded labour. By 1923 Bhimrao Ambedkar broke the taboo, won doctorates abroad and fought for the emancipation of his people. He drafted India’s Constitution, led his followers to discard Hinduism for Buddhism. His legend still spreads through poetry and song.
In 1997 a statue of Dr. Ambedkar in a Dalit colony in Mumbai was desecrated with footwear. As angry residents gathered, police opened fire killing ten. Vilas Ghogre, a leftist poet, hung himself in protest.
Jai Bhim Comrade shot over 14 years, follows the poetry and music of people like Vilas and marks a subaltern tradition of reason that from the days of the Buddha, has fought superstition and religious bigotry.
by Rakesh Sharma
A study of the politics of hate, this documentary is set in Gujarat and graphically documents the changing face of right-wing politics in India through a study of the horrific events of 2002—the Godhra train-burning incident and its brutal aftermath. It examines patterns of pre-planned violence against Muslims by right-wing Hindutva cadres, which many claim was state-supported, if not state-sponsored.
As Chief Minister Modi traverses the state on his Gaurav Yatra, the film documents the 2002 Gujarat Assembly election campaign, especially the exploitation of the Godhra incident by right-wing propaganda machinery for electoral gains. Months after Modi’s poll victory, the film explores ground realities to find shocking fault lines—formal calls for economic boycott of Muslims, segregation in schools and ghettoisation.
Jashn-e-Azadi [How We Celebrate Freedom]
by Sanjay Kak
Filmed and edited between August 2004-2006, this feature length documentary that explores the implications of the struggle for azadi (freedom) in the Kashmir valley. And by extension it is also a conversation about freedom in India.
The real contours of the conflict in Kashmir, which has lived through 24 years of a bloody armed struggle, are invariably buried under the facile depiction of an innocent population, trapped between the terrorist’s gun and the army’s boot. So we reshape our curiosity, and sift through layers of what we can see and what we are allowed to see. Jashn-e-Azadi [How We Celebrate Freedom] combines several forms and modes of expression to evoke the past as well as unravel the present.
The idea of the embodied aesthetic, wherein one embodies aesthetic like turtles do their home, is central to Khanabadosh, an itinerant arts lab initiated by curator and writer Gitanjali Dang in September 2012. Khanabadosh is the Persian word for those who carry their homes with them.