I know girls that were married at 16. The concept of choice was kind of there but only talked about, never offered sincerely. I've never really thought about it because it's one of those things. The girls getting married wanted to get married. They wanted what their parents wanted because all their lives they'd learned that there was nothing else better for them. They could have careers, hobbies, education; but they knew what the priority was. A girl is like a diamond. A girl is a gift. She never belongs to her mother. 

This film made me hugely uncomfortable. I'd never thought about my friends from Arabic school. I'd never thought about my cousins. I'd never thought about Jojona and Lileh and Saanat. They're happy, but would I be? I've never been told that marriage is my end goal. My Dadi takes great pride in the fact I've been raised the same way she raised her sons. It's not a source of shame, but I am the source of her pride. I live life on my own terms. I live vicariously for her. I make my own decisions and I cherish the way that tastes because not every woman in my family has been able to. I wear trousers. I drink tea with my uncles and watch the cricket instead of always going into a back room with the women. (Don't get me wrong. I like drinking tea with my aunts. But sometimes I just wana watch the cricket. And I have that choice.) 

Not every girl does. 

Full disclosure: we saw this film at the Barbican - White middle class Meccah. I think my main problem was the context or situation i viewed it in. I can't put my finger on where the problem I had rests. I can't quite chew it. It wasn't that I was thinking about things I'd never questioned. It was where and how I was being made to think about it. 

This is a conversation that needs to happen, but on our own terms.

By viewing this film with the edge of a white - gaze - typa - thing, it became something else. Gabrielle described it like open heart surgery and sent me this: ‘It’s like some intensively sensitive story turned inside out, and for the body on the table the film might work to recuperate and heal them, but like operating theatre becomes cinema, I wonder where I am in relation to this patient? Like I’m standing behind the surgeons like the most insidious voyeur, amongst culture vultures eating overpriced jellybeans. And all the while (in spite of this structure) the most careful operation is carried out, and it’s poetic and expert and sincere. I'm not oppressed for my race, I don't need operating on, Mustang isn't for me; so what does it mean to enjoy and witness and believe in it anyway? What good does my crying do?'

The way we view things changes them. It's like the dress (u kno the dress. The blue&black/white&gold one). The science broke it all down and in the end the scientists decided it was all about the surrounding light in the room and how ur eyes adjusted to it. As a non-White artist, you can make a piece of work that addresses a specific audience but you have no guarantee, no safeguard that your message//meaning//whatever is as intended. The things you make are never yours fully. They are subject to context and space and format and actually audiences are never gona receive work in the same way. We never come into a gallery or a theatre or anywhere fresh and new like babies. We bring bags with us, coats, daily banalities and all sorts of preoccupations that affect and divert and change us. That's not a fault. It's just something I've never had to think about until now. 

The way I saw this film felt like I sat down in a dark room, and slowly slowly a hand came and started stroking a massive scab in the palm of my hand. As the film went on the fingers on the hand applied more pressure and started scratching. I didn't feel myself bleeding. But when i walked out I was covered and sticky and raw and it stung when I tried to touch things. I had no idea how it happened. 

By Zarina

b͓̽e͓̽s͓̽t͓̽ ͓̽v͓̽i͓̽e͓̽w͓̽e͓̽d͓̽ ͓̽i͓̽n͓̽ ͓̽l͓̽a͓̽n͓̽d͓̽s͓̽c͓̽a͓̽p͓̽e͓̽
͓̽o͓̽r͓̽ ͓̽o͓̽n͓̽ ͓̽a͓̽ ͓̽d͓̽e͓̽s͓̽k͓̽t͓̽o͓̽p͓̽

{ 𝔱𝔥𝔢 𝔬𝔫𝔩𝔶 𝔯𝔢𝔞𝔰𝔬𝔫 𝔗𝔥𝔢 𝔚𝔥𝔦𝔱𝔢 𝔓𝔲𝔟𝔢 𝔠𝔞𝔫 𝔰𝔱𝔦𝔩𝔩 𝔢𝔵𝔦𝔰𝔱 𝔦𝔰 𝔟𝔢𝔠𝔞𝔲𝔰𝔢 𝔰𝔬𝔪𝔢 𝔬𝔣 𝔬𝔲𝔯 𝔯𝔢𝔞𝔡𝔢𝔯𝔰 𝔠𝔥𝔬𝔬𝔰𝔢 𝔱𝔬 𝔰𝔲𝔭𝔭𝔬𝔯𝔱 𝔲𝔰 𝔢𝔞𝔠𝔥 𝔪𝔬𝔫𝔱𝔥 𝔳𝔦𝔞 𝔓𝔞𝔱𝔯𝔢𝔬𝔫. 𝔚𝔢 𝔰𝔬𝔪𝔢𝔱𝔦𝔪𝔢𝔰 𝔡𝔬 𝔱𝔞𝔩𝔨𝔰 𝔞𝔫𝔡 𝔬𝔱𝔥𝔢𝔯 𝔧𝔬𝔟𝔰 𝔟𝔲𝔱 𝔓𝔞𝔱𝔯𝔢𝔬𝔫 𝔦𝔰 𝔥𝔬𝔴 𝔴𝔢 𝔤𝔢𝔱 𝔭𝔞𝔦𝔡 𝔣𝔬𝔯 𝔱𝔥𝔢 𝔞𝔠𝔱𝔲𝔞𝔩 𝔴𝔯𝔦𝔱𝔦𝔫𝔤 𝔥𝔢𝔯𝔢 - 𝔱𝔥𝔢 𝔯𝔢𝔳𝔦𝔢𝔴𝔰 𝔫 𝔞𝔯𝔱 𝔱𝔥𝔬𝔲𝔤𝔥𝔱𝔰 𝔞𝔫𝔡 𝔰𝔬 𝔬𝔫. 𝔄𝔫𝔡 𝔦𝔱'𝔰 𝔰𝔬 𝔦𝔪𝔭𝔬𝔯𝔱𝔞𝔫𝔱 𝔱𝔬 𝔲𝔰 2 𝔱𝔥𝔞𝔱 𝔴𝔢 𝔠𝔞𝔫 𝔰𝔱𝔞𝔶 𝔦𝔫𝔡𝔢𝔭𝔢𝔫𝔡𝔢𝔫𝔱 𝔠𝔯𝔦𝔱𝔦𝔠𝔰 𝔴𝔦𝔱𝔥𝔬𝔲𝔱 𝔱𝔦𝔢𝔰 𝔱𝔬 𝔟𝔦𝔤 𝔣𝔲𝔫𝔡𝔢𝔯𝔰 𝔬𝔯 𝔦𝔫𝔰𝔱𝔦𝔱𝔲𝔱𝔦𝔬𝔫𝔰, 𝔭𝔲𝔟𝔩𝔦𝔠 𝔬𝔯 𝔭𝔯𝔦𝔳𝔞𝔱𝔢. 𝔗𝔥𝔞𝔫𝔨 𝔶𝔬𝔲 𝔣𝔬𝔯 𝔟𝔢𝔦𝔫𝔤 𝔬𝔲𝔯 𝔬𝔩𝔡 𝔱𝔦𝔪𝔢𝔶 𝔭𝔞𝔱𝔯𝔬𝔫𝔰 - 𝔴𝔢'𝔩𝔩 𝔡𝔬 𝔬𝔲𝔯 𝔟𝔢𝔰𝔱 𝔱𝔬 𝔭𝔯𝔬𝔡𝔲𝔠𝔢 𝔮𝔲𝔞𝔩𝔦𝔱𝔶 𝔬𝔲𝔱𝔭𝔲𝔱; 𝔴𝔯𝔦𝔱𝔢 𝔰𝔱𝔲𝔣𝔣 𝔱𝔥𝔞𝔱 𝔦𝔰 𝔱𝔥𝔬𝔲𝔤𝔥𝔱𝔣𝔲𝔩 𝔞𝔫𝔡 𝔰𝔦𝔫𝔠𝔢𝔯𝔢. }

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