Just Vision: Films about Nonviolence



Just Vision

What is the best way to change your country? Ryan Geertsma and Liz Waid look at an organization that uses film to share stories, and encourage change.

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Transcript


Voice 1 

Welcome to Spotlight. I’m Ryan Geertsma.

Voice 2 

And I’m Liz Waid. Spotlight uses a special English method of broadcasting. It is easier for people to understand, no matter where in the world they live.

Voice 1 

Wallajeh is a small village. It is southwest of the city of Jerusalem. It is one of many villages affected by the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Most of the people in Wallajeh are Palestinian. In 2009, the Israeli government planned to build a security wall through the middle of Wallajeh. This wall would divide the village. It would also separate them from the rest of the Palestinian territories.

Voice 2 

The people of Wallajeh did not want the wall to divide their village. So they protested. But they did not use weapons or force. Instead they used non-violent methods of protest. They gathered together. They stood in front of building vehicles. And they spoke about why they wanted the government to move the wall.

Voice 1 

The people of Wallajeh used these peaceful methods for many months. But there was little progress. And they were losing hope. Then, they watched a film called Budrus. Budrus was made by the organization Just Vision. This film encouraged the people of Wallajeh to continue their peaceful efforts. Today’s Spotlight is on Just Vision and its desire to encourage and support non-violent conflict resolution in Israel-Palestine.

Voice 2 

Ronit Avni started Just Vision in 2003. Avni is a North American and an Israeli citizen. She has worked with human rights media organizations for many years. She has helped make films about many conflicts around the world. But in 2001, Avni decided she wanted to concentrate on the conflict in Israel-Palestine. Avni did not start by making films. Instead, she began by doing research. Avni told the Dowser news organization,

Voice 3 

“I spent 2 years talking with Palestinian and Israeli nonviolence leaders, peace builders and human rights activists. They all expressed that they felt invisible - like no one in their own communities or internationally saw the work they were doing… I decided to launch Just Vision to show their untold stories of nonviolence. I wanted to connect these people to each other, to news media organizations, to leaders and to the world.”

Voice 1 

Avni recognized that news organizations offered plenty of information about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. However, they usually told stories about violence and death. Avni wanted to tell a different story. She wanted to tell real stories of peacemakers and non-violent human rights activists in Israel and Palestine.

Voice 2 

Just Vision released its first film in 2006. They called the film Encounter Point. The film told the story of several Israelis and Palestinians who experienced loss through the conflict. Some of the people had lost their homes. Others had lost family members or friends. The film showed how these individuals experienced anger and sadness. But it also showed how they chose to work together for a peaceful end to the conflict.

Voice 1 

In 2009, Just Vision released its second film, Budrus. This film told the story of a village named Budrus. Like the village of Wallajeh, the government planned to build a security wall through Budrus. But the wall would block the villagers of Budrus from their farm land. So, the villagers of Budrus decided to act. But instead of fighting for their land, the community of Budrus protested peacefully. Budrus tells about the life of a Palestinian villager named Ayed Morror. It shows how he, and his 15-year-old daughter, brought together their community. The film also shows how Israeli citizens worked with the people of Budrus. Together, these Israelis and Palestinians solved the conflict peacefully and saved the village of Budrus.

Voice 2 

Julia Bacha is a Brazilian film maker. She works for Just Vision and directed Budrus. She told the New York Times why she made the film.

Voice 4 

“I hope this film can… encourage more people to believe in, write about, support and join the nonviolent struggle taking place in Israel-Palestine.”

Voice 1 

To help achieve this goal, Just Vision creates educational materials and resources for their films. When Just Vision shows a film, it uses these resources to start discussions about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, about non-violence resistance, and about peace making.  And it seems to be working. After watching Budrus, the villagers of Wallajeh were encouraged. And they continued their work. After the film, they planned their largest and most effective peaceful protest ever!

Voice 2 

In 2012, Just Vision released its most recent film. It is a shorter film called My Neighborhood. This film tells the story of a young Palestinian boy, his family and his community. The boy’s name is Mohammed. The government made families in Mohammed’s community move out of their homes. And Israeli citizens moved into the homes. This made many of the Palestinians in Mohammed’s community angry.  It made Israeli citizens angry too.  Many people thought making the families move was not right.

Voice 1 

The film shows Mohammed and members of his community working together to peacefully protest this action. It also shows how Mohammed became friends with young Israeli citizens. These Israelis peacefully protested with him for his community.

Voice 2 

Similar to Budrus, this film tells the story of a housing conflict. But unlike Budrus, the conflict shown in My Neighborhood is not yet solved. But Just Vision hopes the film will encourage a peaceful resolution. Bacha says that the film is already having a powerful effect. She told the film magazine The Independent,

Voice 4 

“We recently showed the film at the European Parliament. The boy from the film, Mohammed El Kurd, came and spoke to the Parliament… The Parliament was shocked by Mohammed’s story... Since then, the European Parliament has made a promise to bring up the issue through their ambassadors.”

Voice 1 

Bacha, Avni, and Just Vision believe in sharing stories of peaceful, non-violent conflict resolution. Their films have won many awards. And many people all over the world have seen them. Avni and Bacha believe their films can change people’s behavior - both the people involved in the conflict and the people watching the films. Bacha told Forbes Magazine why she believes film has the power to do this.

Voice 4 

“Film has a rare ability. For a short time, it keeps a large number of people from making a quick judgment. It lets them invest themselves in a particular story - even in the story of someone who is very different from them... Film permits people to examine the effects of a particular subject on a human level.”

Voice 2 

The writer of this program was Courtney Schutt. The producer was Mark Drenth. The voices you heard were from the United States. All quotes were adapted for this program and voiced by Spotlight. You can listen to this program again and read it on the Internet at www.radioenglish.net. This program is called, “Just Vision: Films about Nonviolence.”

Voice 1 

We hope you can join us again for the next Spotlight program. Goodbye.

Question:

Have you ever learned something from a film? What is the most important film you have ever seen?

Comments


Avatar Spotlight
georgino
said on October 14, 2013

Good idea peacemakers, go ahead that conflict between Israeli - Palestinian is a old war it´s time that these countries find the peace No revenge,  noviolence.

Good story, Friends

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Mss Flamboyant
said on November 23, 2014

It is the best way to get peace but it only is effective when government listen and grasp their citizens.

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thanhdung07121985@gmail.com
said on February 06, 2015

It’s great idea to protect the peace without conflict or violence.All people all over the world always wish a peaceful and happy life.The family can gather together everyday or holiday.They share experience and joy together with a happy smile and warm feeling.

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hermit peter
said on July 04, 2017

i am luck i find a good way to improve english. as a chinese, i confused when i want to express myself correctly, and which word is the suitable one. i know this situation is wrong. then i just learn and use the simle words. but how about these more complex words? i recognize them, know the meaning of them, but seldom use them, rarely know how to use them. for example, the experience, release and so on. as a verb, experience what? this is my bottleneck.
with the spotlight, when i hear this kind of words, i write them and recall them again when i finished the whole passage. so those words could impressed me.