BETWEEN THE LINES: INDIA'S THIRD GENDER
pm, Sunday, November 12th, Roxie Cinema, San Francisco
Director: Thomas Wartmann
Country: Germany (2006)
Running Time: 80 min, 35mm, DV-Doc.
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Between the Lines perceptively explores the lives of India's 'Eunuchs' - The Hijras, living as outcasts on the edge of society.
Officially the existence of Hijras is denied and their universe itself
is highly inconsistent: Hijras are infertile - yet, according to the
Hindu religion they have 'a talent to spread fertility'. Although
they have no apparent sexual organs, the erotic is omnipresent in their
Laxmi, a glamorous dance teacher; Rambha, a romantic eighteen year old; and Asha, a jaded alcoholic, share the secrets of their spiritual, emotional and gender identities as Hijras in Mumbai.
Followed and befriended by a young female photographer Anita Khemka's, they take her to their homes, bars, brothels and temples-- windows into their dangerous yet liberated life on the margins-- often turning her inquisitive questions back on their questioner.
This visually stunning and powerful film makes us participants in a journey, Causing us to seek answers to the contradictory nature of our own lives as we witness Laxmi, Rambha and Asha bravely define their own identities.
(The well renowned cinematographer of Rivers and Tide, Thomas Riedelsheimer, shot and edited Between the Lines.)
Introduction by Professor Angana Chatterji from the Social and Cultural Anthropology Program at California Institute of Integral Studies.
MadCat Women's International Film Festival
Berlin & Beyond
Cultural and Social Anthropology, Stanford University
Chitresh Das Dance Company