Women, war, and peace series continues

The Women, War, and Peace series continued this past week at SIUE with another event in Abbot Auditorium in Lovejoy Library. Part of a joint effort by Peace and International Studies and Women’s Studies, the series has been showing parts of a PBS special series called ‘Women, War, and Peace.’

On Tuesday, a small group of students watched two parts of the series and discussed some of the questions that are offered by the producers of the series.

The first film that was shown was “I Came to Testify.” This documentary looks at the war in the Balkans during the 1990’s and the resulting trials for the systematic rapes of women during this time of war. Through the eyes of several of the women who came forward to testify at the trials of three men at the Hague.

These trials at the Hague were the first trials to take a look at how sex and rape are used as instruments of terror during times of war. The documentary also explores the fact that these trials were the first trials to see rape during war as a crime against humanity.

According to the PBS website, “‘I Came to Testify’ also explores the chasm between this seismic legal shift and the post-war justice experienced by most of Bosnia’s women war survivors.”

The film was followed by a 15-minute discussion where the audience joined in to talk about the content presented in the film.

Abigail Disney speaks to SIUE students about her film "Pray the Devil Back to Hell."

The second film that was viewed was the edited version of the full length documentary of “Pray the Devil Back to Hell.” This documentary was viewed as a full length documentary in September where Abigail Disney, the producer came to SIUE to speak about the documentary and the issues surrounding the war in Liberia. This was also followed by a 15 minute discussion.

There will be two more documentary viewings to come with this series. The documentaries shown will be “Peace Unveiled” about women in Afghanistan who came forward to ensure that women’s rights didn’t get traded away during peace talks with the Taliban and “The War We Are Living” about the 40-year ling war in Colombia.  These will be shown on Tuesday, November 8, in Abbot Auditorium.


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