Everyone has a story: A coming-of-age film about the vital role of listening and empathy in bridging bridges across personal, cultural, religious, political and gender divides.
In the spirit of Michael Apted's "7 Up" series, the award-winning "My So-Called Enemy" follows six courageous Palestinian and Israeli teenage girls who participated in a cross-cultural women's leadership program in the U.S. and documents how the transformative experience of knowing their "enemies" as human beings in US meets with the realities of their lives back home in the Middle East over the next seven years. A film about not making assumptions about, or creating "an other," "My So-Called Enemy presents the complexities of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict through a human lens, and the possibility and hope that come from listening to each other's stories. Through the coming-of-age narratives of Adi, Gal, Hanin, Inas, Rawan and Rezan, viewers see how creating relationships across all kinds of differences are first steps towards resolving conflict.
This heart and mind-opening film, from Emmy Award-winning Director Lisa Gossels ("The Children of Chabannes"), celebrates diversity and inclusion, addresses questions of identity and negative stereotyping - and features young women as change agents. It is not only a fit not only for coursework, but for Diversity Week and Women's History Month celebrations and interfaith, multifaith and human rights/global issues programming.
"This film offered our campus a complex and compelling look at the real lives of young women within Israel and Palestine and sparked deep conversations about nationhood, identity, forgiveness and relationships. I don't believe we'll find anything better than what "My So-Called Enemy" presented." - Ross Wantland, Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Relations, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
This film has great pedagogical potential across many disciplines. It is remarkably non-ideological and makes no attempt to offer easy solutions to the seemingly intractable difficulties faced by the subjects of the film. Whether the issue is immigration, economic class, race, religion, etc., there are numerous touch points that will likely speak to the personal experiences and challenges our students struggle with and so provide a valuable starting point for important dialogue. - Sean Martin, Professor of Philosophy, Santa Rosa Junior College (CA)
Awards and Broadcast
Hamptons International Film Festival: Winner, Jury Prize for Best Conflict & Resolution
Boston Jewish Film Festival: Winner, Audience Award, Best Feature Documentary Film
Denver Film Festival: Winner, Special Jury Prize in Filmmaking
ITVS-curated "Global Voices" TV series (The World Channel)
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