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Film Summary: In Jogjakarta, Indonesia, the Muslim women’s headscarf is distinctively colorful, fashionable, fun and expressive. What are the dreams and commitments behind the choice to veil or not to veil? JILBAB, a documentary named after the Indonesian word for the Muslim hijab, is about veiling trends for women in the city of “Jogja.” It features students from Universitas Gadjah Madah, designers of local women’s fashion boutiques,and Muslim women from outside of Indonesia speaking about the significance of veiling (or not veiling), veiling ideology and fashion, and the history of veiling in Islam. This film explores uniquely Javanese Islam, its unmistakable religious aesthetics, and what the jilbab suggests in an Indonesian context as opposed to Middle Eastern, North American or European Muslim contexts.
An engrossing and detailed look at a small Fundamentalist congregation in Massachusetts in the mid- 1980s. It follows several families, detailing their views of their religion and of the world. It provides an insider’s view without varnishing away negative details. First rate!
I find the shorter version more useful for the classroom, as it leaves time for a quick debriefing in an 80-minute class period. The discussion during the next class period works best if I give students study questions and ask them to relate the film to their reading.
Leave plenty of time for talk! Most students need it. (JS)
Keywords: Fundamentalism, worldview, conversion, family life, sects
Film Title: “Parish Portaits” — by James Ault — 1999 — 51 minutes Distributor: James Ault Productions — www.jamesault.com Summary: (from the distributor’s website)
Portraits of four diverse Episcopal churches for the Zacchaeus Project and Trinity Institute’s national teleconference “Roots and Wings,” September 27-9, 1999. Includes short scenes on different themes–Episcopal identity, youth, women clergy, etc.–and a longer version of challenges faced by an Anglo-Latino congregation in Oxnard, California.
Keywords: American religion; Episopalians; parish life
Film Info: The Hutterites – National Film Board of Canada (1964) – 28 minutes B/W
Summary: Documentary (without shooting restrictions) of life in a Hutterite colony in Western Canada. [See also the color documentary Hutterites, from the Canadian Broadcasting Company (1984), 59 minutes.]
Film notice taken (with permission) from the “Teaching Resources” list in Meredith McGuire’s Religion: The Social Context, third edition. Her 5th edition (available from Waveland Press: see www.religionthesocialcontext.com) does not contain the resource list. I have only traced some of these films to current distributors. Please post updated information about them, if you have it. – JS
Summary: Traces the Indian religious experience in two highly contrasting locations: the bustling city of Benares where millions come to bathe in the holy waters of the Ganges, and the small village of Bhith Bhagwanpur, unvisited except by professional story tellers and itinerant priests. The film concentrates its attention on the Hindu approach to God. But which God? For there are 330 million of them.