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Voices Unveiled: Turkish Women Who Dare
A film by Binnur Karaevli
US/Turkey, 2010, 69 minutes, Color, DVD, English, Subtitled
Order No. W111030
Can Islamic values co-exist with full equality for women? VOICES UNVEILED examines this timely issue through portraits of three women pursuing life paths and careers of their own choosing in present-day Turkey.

Each has defied social expectations in a democratic, secular nation where religious fundamentalism has re-emerged as a political force and patriarchal values still prevail. Well-known textile artist Belkis Belpinar, whose work combines science and kilim rug traditions, resisted her father’s wishes that she study engineering. Dancer and psychologist Banu Yucelar braved family opposition to modern dance, widely perceived as a form of prostitution. Women’s rights activist Nur Bakata Mardin helps women in underserved communities, where old beliefs hold sway, form small business cooperatives.

As engaging as its subjects, VOICES UNVEILED punctuates its in-depth portraits with insights from other Turks and lively discussions that include intergenerational debates over veiling. The film is a valuable companion to WOMEN OF TURKEY, which offers a different take on gender roles that embrace modern lifestyles and Islamic culture.


  • Rome Independent Film Festival, April 2010
  • London International Documentary Film Festival, April 2010
  • SEE Los Angeles Film Festival, May 2010, Audience Award
  • Napa/Sonoma Valley Film Festival, September 2010
  • Landlocked Film Festival, August 2010

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    “Binnur Karaevli brings to life the changing and sometimes contradictory gender identities and the search for a synthesis between the West and Islam in Turkey…highly recommended to those interested the fields of international development, sociology, political science, international relations, gender and women's studies at the graduate and undergraduate levels.”
    Nüket Kardam
    Professor, Monterey Institute of International Studies

    “Presents the face of Turkish women, despite any current political party leanings. Should Turkey abandon this path of personal expression, promoted since Ataturk, they will do [so] at the peril of the entire Middle East.”
    Linda Alepin
    Founding Director of the Global Women’s Leadership Network

    “Emphasizes that education and persistence in the pursuit of individual freedom are key to improving political and social conditions. Highly recommended.”
    Video Librarian

    "Voices Unveiled can be utilized by educators to highlight women’s issues and the struggle of women’s movements in non-Western contexts and predominantly Islamic cultures. Courses that focus on gender and society in the Middle East, women’s movements, and feminism in diversity might incorporate discussions which build upon this film."
    Films for the Feminist Classroom

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    Voices Unveiled: Turkish Women Who Dare is included in the following Special Collections.
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WMM offers film collections on a variety of specific subject areas, including the collections VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN: Ending the Silence, BODY IMAGE, and AFRICAN-AMERICAN: Celebrate the Lives of African-American Women.

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Women Make Movies is a multicultural, multiracial, non-profit media arts organization which facilitiates the production, promotion, distribution, and exhibition of independent films and videotapes by and about women. contact us