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Alice Walker’s Voice of Beauty & Truth

Alice Walker’s Voice of Beauty & Truth

Once in a while, the world witnesses a voice that taps into utter beauty and truth. Alice Walker’s voice through her writings and poetry and through the essence of the beautiful woman that she is, is one such voice; a voice that has impacted my life and the lives of many women and men so very deeply. May all in the world and for generations to come always access Alice’s voice of truth and beauty.” — Zainab Salbi, Women For Women International

When I wrote my last Epochalips blog almost three months ago, we had just began our crowd-funding campaign to raise $50,000 to help complete my new documentary about writer and activist Alice Walker. Now, with ten days left of the campaign, I’m ready to share a few highlights from the incredible journey so far!

To date we have 262 donors who between them have donated $21,679 to the campaign. It’s exciting to know that our donors come from 13 different countries around the world, and even more exciting to discover that behind every donation there is a story.

We were particularly moved by a woman who donated $30 – a single mother of two, she wrote to us that she has made it a personal policy to donate $30 every month to a different cause, be it a school in Kenya or a homeless center in her neighborhood. She wanted to pledge to our film because “Alice’s writings have sustained me during tough times in my life.” I passed on these kind words to Alice, who responded with a story of her own:

“The inclusion of people who could be my own parents and grandparents in terms of their modest contributions moves me deeply. My mother for instance would have been able to contribute, at most, two dollars. These well worn bills would have been folded and refolded many times as she saved them for whatever endeavour most needed her support. She might also have been saving them to buy something she couldn’t grow: rice, perhaps, or oysters, which my father loved. She would have put them in an envelope she’d saved from an earlier letter to our house, scratching out our address; she would have stamped the envelope using the coins she found in the lining of jackets, pants’ pockets, and purses. She would have sent the contribution off to Kali Films with a prayer for our success. Completely aware that “success” is only meaningful if it is shared by women like herself. As you know, I prefer to go nowhere the poor cannot go. We will get wherever Heaven is together, or we will not get there at all. Which is, I think, the Universe’s notion of Justice, as well. With so much love for our journey” Alice

I feel humbled by people’s generosity in supporting the film, and honoured that I am able to make a film about a writer who has touched so many so deeply.

A CLEAR AND TRUE VOICE

Angel Kyodo Williams, a spiritual teacher and activist reminded me how crucial it is to document the lives of visionary women.

“Far too often we come to know the importance of a great person’s contribution to our lives and our evolution as a society too late. With Alice, we already know her contribution is immense and singular. She speaks with a voice that is clear and true…and thus, it is a voice that is often feared and suppressed. This film will lift her quiet voice over the din of resistance at a time when it is needed more than ever. We simply must support this film.”

With each new connection we have made through our campaign, I feel compelled to make another. We had the idea to add some new ‘perks’ for donors, and in doing so collaborate with other women artists. We have partnered with a Delhi based design group who work with women’s craft co-operatives in the desert region of Kutch, Western India. We’ve also teamed up with lesbian filmmaker and artist Lisa Gornick, who will create a unique drawing inspired by our film and Alice’s writings.

There is one final more comment I want to share with you from one of our donors, Stephanie Schroeder, a freelance writer: “ Times is Hard! We all realize this and we also are all stretched to our financial limits. We are all making contributions in our own way(s), making art agitating for real change, etc. Supporting Pratibha’s film about Alice Walker, who embodies the spirit (and realization) of both artistry and radical activism is my way of honoring a foremother, a sister who has dedicated her life to the same thing: recognizing & honoring the love and joy, the pain and possibilities of/for women around the globe.”

We’re bringing together a limitless global community of women; a network of interconnected stories; and a queer world of mutual support, recognition and creativity. There are only 10 days left to donate and join this ever-growing network so, if you can afford to, please contribute.

With gratitude always— 

Pratibha

Filmmaker Pratibha Parmar has an exemplary track record for her passionate commitment to making films with integrity and illuminating untold stories with visual flair and imagination. Her award-winning work has been widely exhibited at international film festivals and broadcast globally. Pratibha’s dedication in bringing complex subjects into mainstream media has helped change the contours of popular discourse on race, feminism, sexuality and creativity. Pratibha’s credits include A Place of Rage, a documentary film on African-American women and the civil rights movement featuring Angela Davis and June Jordan. In 1993 Pratibha released her most challenging film Warrior Marks, which documented female genital mutilation at a time when the subject was taboo globally. This award-winning documentary was made in collaboration with the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Alice Walker. Parmar and Walker collaborated on the book Warrior Marks – Female Genital Mutilation and the Sexual Blinding of Women, which documented the making of the film (Jonathan Cape UK, Harcourt Brace US). Nina’s Heavenly Delights, Pratibha’s multi-award winning lesbian romantic starring Shelley Conn & Laura Fraser was released theatrically in the UK and US in 2006|7 and nominated for a GLAAD Award. Author and editor of several books, Pratibha was awarded The Visionary Award for her body of work from the One in Ten Film Festival in October 2007 and is a past winner of the Frameline Film Festival Life Time Achievement Award. Learn more about Pratibha at her website www.kalifilms.com.

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