SCHEHERAZADE’S DIARY/Yawmiyat Scheherazade + Q&A with curator Joseph Fahim
Zeina Daccache | Lebanon | 2013 | 78 min
The women inmates of Lebanon’s Baabda Prison mine the depths of personal experience and confront patriarchy as they prepare and present the first theatre performance staged inside an Arab women’s prison. Filmed during and after the ten-month drama therapy/theatre project set up in 2012 in Baabda prison by drama therapist and director Zeina Daccache, these “murderers of husbands, adulterers and drug felons” reveal stories of domestic violence, traumatic childhood, failed marriage, forlorn romance and deprivation of motherhood.
Drawing on the folk tales of 1001 Nights, the prisoners of Baabda Prison utilise the ancient Arab traditions of storytelling in confronting both themselves and their societies as large. In creating popular narratives, the prisoners underline the various functions of storytelling: to inform, to probe, and, most important of all, to empathise.
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