An Egyptian woman shares her story about a man who sexually harasses her while at the market. Instead of ignoring him as most women would do, she confronts him with a shocking and unexpected tone.
A film by Sharine Atif (Egypt | 2015 | 3 mins)
About Sharine Atif
Sharine Atif (1982) is an Egyptian-American filmmaker who grew up in both Cairo and New York. She currently studies Film Directing at California Institute of the Arts to obtain a Masters in Fine Arts. She is an activist with a mission and aims to make films that combat inustices of many kinds, and that in particular challenge sexism and militarism. She is an outspoken peace advocate and a feminist with a specific critique of gender discrimination and inequality in her native Egypt, and in the Middle East generally. She is experimenting with different strategies for how best to create change through cinema, discovering that she can yield very different responses by using confrontation, humor, subtlety, tenderness, or aggression.
As a Muslim child growing up in an undeveloped part of Cairo, I had an open-ended curiosity on what it would be like to leave the life I was born into and live the life of my choice. I was trained to do the right things; follow traditions and religion, even when some aspects of them were oppressive to women. We were trained in school to memorize textbooks, and not to question things or think critically, to obey and to not have a voice. The only one true freedom I had was my imagination, but it never flowed out beyond my mind. One of the only daily activities was to watch TV. We had a TV channel that showed American cartoons and films non-stop. I would see teenage girls living in college dorms, or studying abroad. I loved watching Walt Disney cartoons and related to most of the female characters. In The Little Mermaid, Ariel had a dream to live above of the sea, but her father did not allow it. In Aladdin, Jasmine was a princess with many riches but was forbidden to leave her palace. The movies I watched were what fueled me to not only break out of the oppressed world I was born into, but also to discover my passion for making movies in hopes to inspire young women, who perhaps might be in similar situations. Fortunately, I was accepted to the California Institute of the Arts, the very school that was founded by Walt Disney.