Between 15 and 19 June Scottish Documentary Institute ran a series of online events on the theme of women, democracy and documentaries.

Thank you to our speakers, and those in the audience, for making these such informative and enjoyable sessions.

To watch the events please use the links below. 

1. Moara Passoni (Edge of Democracy) Q&A. Monday 15 June, 2-3pm BST. Film available on Netflix.


Watch the Q&A here.

The opening film of Phenomenal Women 2020 series was Edge of Democracy, a captivating documentary made by Brazilian filmmaker Petra Costa, taking us deep inside the end of democracy and remarkable political upheaval in Brazil over the last decade. It’s an astounding inside look at the recent political shake up in Brazil, examining and showing us directly how democracy is collapsing thanks to political power grabs.

2. Rachel Leah Jones (Advocate) Q&A. Thursday 18 June, 2-3pm BST. Film available here.


Watch the Q&A here.

Lea Tsemel defends Palestinians: from feminists to fundamentalists, from non-violent demonstrators to armed militants. As a Jewish-Israeli lawyer who has represented political prisoners for nearly 50 years, Tsemel, in her tireless quest for justice, pushes the praxis of a human rights defender to its limits.

3. Mila Turajlic (The Other Side of Everything) Q&A. Friday 19 June, 2-3pm BST. Film available on Amazon Prime.


Watch the Q&A here.

A locked door inside a Belgrade apartment has kept one family separated from their past for over 70 years. As the filmmaker begins an intimate conversation with her mother, the political fault line running through their home reveals a house and a country haunted by history. The chronicle of a family in Serbia turns into a searing portrait of an activist in times of great turmoil, questioning the responsibility of each generation to fight for their future.

4. Keynote Panel discussion – women, democracy and documentary.

Friday 19 June, 3.30pm BST.

Watch the panel discussion here.

The Phenomenal Women 2020 keynote panel discussion bought together different perspectives on women making documentaries and fighting for democracy.  Chaired by equalities champion Talat Yaqoob, with guest speakers Rachel Leah Jones (Dir. of Advocate) and Mila Turajlic (Dir. of The Other Side of Everything), Isabel Moura Mendes, Arts Partnership Manager at the British Council, Hannah Bardell (MP), Ruth Maguire (MSP) and Alison Johnstone (MSP). 

Phenomenal Women was supported by Film Hub Scotland, part of the BFI’s Film Audience Network, and funded by Screen Scotland and Lottery funding from the BFI. 

Image credit: Petra Costa, Dir. Edge of Democracy

Scottish Documentary Institute


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