2019 has been extremely challenging, succinctly put. Endeavoring to finish up my next documentary by the end of this year, a shorter work titled, “ALMOST” on reality, identity and Indigeneity, and the effects of stigma and prejudice. But before that, I have a couple of more screenings scheduled.
On this Thursday, 21 November, in cooperation with Xart Splitta, there’ll be a screening of “Forget Winnetou! Loving in the Wrong Way”, followed by a discussion with Filipina-German PhD candidate, activist and academic, Karin Louise Hermes.
On 4 December, I’m looking forward to the event being organized by Lada Suomenrinne, a Northen Samí filmmaker and photographer.
Unseen unheard is a selection of films about the indigenous perspective and experience curated by the young Sámi filmmaker and photographer Lada Suomenrinne.
The films by indigenous filmmakers from Norway, Finland and the USA deal with contemporary issues of the First Nations like the fight for land rights and against industrial destruction, decolonization and cultural appropriation. The screening will start at 19H in ACUD STUDIO and will followed by Q&A with Berlin based filmmaker Red Haircrow.
List of filmmakers:
Sunna Nousuniemi- Dissociate (Sámi)
Sky Hopinka- Dislocation Blues (Ho-Chunk/Pechanga)
Elle Márjá Eira & Mai-Lis Eira – The Sámi has rights (Sámi)
Blackhorse Lowe- Shimasani (Navajo)
Red Haircrow- Forget Winnetou! Loving in the wrong way (Chiricahua Apache/Cherokee)
November is Native American Heritage Month, a national holiday in the USA. But there and here in Germany, the dehumanization and objectification of Indigenous peoples, and the minimization or erasure of historical acts and issues continues. Colonial behaviors and practices that are connected to the most serious, even life threatening problems humanity now faces.
Germany is well known for its cultural appropriation and ideation of American Indians. Misinformation, stereotypes and Eurocentric narratives are widespread. “Playing Indian” as a costume or a lifestyle has been normalized for generations, largely with the help or excuse of Karl May’s work.
Whether one agrees with such practices or not, most don’t recognize it for what it is: #Colonialism2019 and Systemic Racism. Why are Native and Indigenous issues too often left out of conversations on racism in Germany? Why do so many people, even anti-racism or social justice activists continue to tokenize/primitize Indigenous peoples and/or leave them out of conversations on how to survive and create a better world for all peoples?
What truly is intersectional activism and why is it critically important for Indigenous peoples, the history of their treatment and contemporary reality to take stage alongside any and every other action on anti-colonialism, anti-racism and climate crisis? What can you do? What should you do? How can we work together?
We’re going to talk about it on 21 November!
Meet our guest:
Karin Louise Hermes is a Filipina-German academic based in Berlin, Germany. Karin has participated in, organized and reported on many inter-sectional political issues at climate crisis conferences, during direct actions and demonstrations and other endeavors on Indigenous self-representation, ending racism and colonialism. She holds a MA in Pacific Island Studies from the University of Hawai’i, and is a PhD candidate in American Studies at Humboldt-Universität Berlin. One of her articles, “Why I protest“.
Pleased to announce our film has been officially selected to screen at the Balkan Can Kino & Film Festival in Athens, Greece. The event takes place between 4-12 October, 2019. More details about the event and group from their website:
“Balkan Can Kino is a collectively run cinema, lab & film festival, founded by film professionals in 2017 in Athens and hosted on the ground floor of Communitism. Film programming focuses on alternative approaches to cinema and audiovisual art in order to showcase diversity. At the same time, it offers film education with the organization of workshops, discussions and lectures, at low cost or completely free of charge.
Our dream is to create a solidarity network among filmmakers, organizations and institutions, active at local and international level. The project is open to those who are interested in getting to know us and/or participate.”
Also in October, for an event on the 5th & 6th (postponed), we will be presented in a special screening by HuBB Humans Before Borders group. The screening will take place in Lisbon, Portugal, and will part of an on-going series of film viewing and discussions on topics such as colonialism, Eurocentrism, inequality and inequity. What are some of the ways these are continuing to be manifest and how to end these Eurocentric cycles of violence and imperialism.
In cooperation with Heinrich Böll Stiftung Bildungswerk Berlin, we cordially invite you to a screening of our documentary on September 7th at FSK Kino am Oranienplatz in Berlin. This event is free to the public with funding made possible from the Stiftung Deutsche Klassenlotterie Berlin.You are welcome to share this invitation with everyone. Please be sure to register, as seating is limited.
The program starts at 2:00 pm and is followed by a panel discussion with the director, Red Haircrow, and three protagonists. Representing Native Americans are Johnny Clyde (Mezica / Purepecha) and Viveka Frost (Teques / Caribe), and representing an important German perspective is Sönke Bernhardi.
Tagline: “It’s time to learn. To go beyond. It’s not about Winnetou. It’s about you and us.”
Synopsis: “The same mentality that ignores the rights of indigenous people to self-expression are often those who also have stereotypes and gas light GLBTIIQ people. Women. The disabled or economically challenged, especially BIPOC, just wanting for change and equality. It’s basically saying, “My joy is more important than your dignity, your rights or even your life.”
From Dr. Andreas Brenne on our screening and discussion on 26 April in Osnabrück, Museumquartier.
“Freitag Abend im Museumsquartier Osnabrück: Red Haircrow – Forget Winnetou/Loving in the wrong way (Film und Diskussion)
Ein anregender Abend im vollbesetzten Haus. Mit dabei: zahlreiche Lehrende und Studierende der Uni Osnabrück (Institut für Amerikanistik, Institut für Sozialwissenschaft) und der Autor und Produzent des Films Red Haircrow (Autor, Psychologe, Filmemacher und Koch). Ein eindringlicher und in seiner Direktheit beeindruckenden Dokumentarfilm gab er den in Deutschland ansässigen Native Americans eine Stimme und präsentierte kontroverse Positionen und Perspektiven auf das Thema „Herkunft und kulturelle Identität“.
Kein Infotainment a la Michael Moore sondern ein fundraising Film mit begrenztem Budget. Insofern lag der Fokus auf den sehr persönlichen Statements, die durch Interviews mit Experten (u.A. Hartmut Lutz) ergänzt wurden. Auch die anschließende Diskussion mit dem Autor war sensibel und inhaltlich komplex. Kein Karl May bashing ( Red Haicrow: Wunderschöne Bücher, ich wünschte ich hätte Karl May einmal kennengelernt) sondern eine differenzierte Auseinandersetzung mit dem deutschen Bild des Indianers. Wertschätzung, Interesse, Aneignung und stereotype Diskriminierung liegen oft nah bei einander und es ist hilfreich dies näher zu untersuchen. Ein Ausweg – so der Autor – ist Begegnung, Kontakt und Interaktion. Und natürlich soll man weiter Karl May lesen und zur Aufführung bringen. Von politisch korrekten Bearbeitungen (wie jüngst bei Pipi Langstrumpf) hält Red Haicrow gar nicht. Man sollte Winnetou also nicht vergessen, sondern unter einer anderen Perspektive wieder entdecken. Ein gelungener und auch nachdenklicher Abend.”
A part of the program Courage: SEE! Know, See, Act:
“As part of the cultural programme (#courage2018), attention is drawn to numerous events of cultural and educational institutions in Dresden, which deal with the topics of civil courage, integration and racism, but also with exclusion, affiliation and discrimination. These invite to change the own point of view. Thus, the events allow to experience different facets of Courage, for example at concerts, film screenings or exhibitions. In addition, the cultural programme invites you to become active yourself, for example in the context of discussions, interactive performances and encounters.” TU Dresden School of Humanities and Social Sciences