The Forum will show the Academy Award nominated documentary film “Writing with Fire” at 7 p.m., Wednesday, May 11, at Prior-Jollek Hall, Antilles School Campus, St. Thomas.
In a cluttered news landscape dominated by men, emerges India’s only newspaper run by Dalit women. Chief reporter Meera and her journalists break traditions, redefining what it means to be powerful.
“The Dalits,” who are central in this documentary film, are members of the lowest social group in the Hindu caste system. The word “Dalit” means “oppressed” or “broken” and is the name members of this group gave themselves in the 1930s.
The four main caste categories are: Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and the Shudras. Each category is determined by a specific occupation. The fifth category Dalits fell outside of this caste system.
India is home to over 200 million Dalits, out of a population of 1.3 billion.
The Hindu caste system, in which identity and status are ascribed at birth, dates to an ancient Sanskrit text called the “Manusmriti” (The laws of Manu) and uses a doctrine of purity and pollution to classify people into four “varnas” or castes.
“Writing with Fire” is a 2021 Indian documentary film directed by filmmakers Sushmit Ghosh and Rintu Thomas about the journalists running the Dalit women-led newspaper Khabar Lahariya as they shift from 14-years of print to digital journalism using smartphones. This is the first Indian feature documentary to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature.
Khabar Lahariya is run by Dalit women armed with smartphones. Chief reporter Meera and her journalists break traditions and report from some of the most difficult regions of the country, be it on the frontlines of India’s biggest issues or within the confines of their homes, redefining what it means to be powerful.
Set against the backdrop of an increasingly polarized world, “Writing with Fire” journeys with Meera and her band of sisters — including her feisty understudy, crime reporter Suneeta — for five years. As they risk everything to speak truth to power, the film bears witness to their wit, intelligence and compassion in confronting the most urgent stories of our times.
Directed and produced by: Rintu Thomas and Sushmit Ghosh Presented by Black Ticket Films ~ “The most inspiring journalism movie – maybe ever.” The Washington Post ~
“Rousing…Nothing short of galvanizing” The New York Times Critics Pick ~
“Vital, stimulating” LA Times
The Forum Film Festival 2022 will be held on three Wednesdays: May 4, 11 and 18.
Courtyard Opens at 6 p.m. with small meals, wine, beverages and desserts from Amalia Café available for purchase.
The screening will begin at 7 p.m. Ticket pricing:
Adults and Teachers $10; Students $5
To purchase a ticket: All ticket purchases must go through The Forum’s online portal, or at the door.
Online Google: The Forum – Promotix
Indoor Masks Required