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A film by Maria Luisa Gambale & Gloria Bremer, Executive Produced by Steven Lawrence
US/Senegal, 2011, 60 minutes, Color, DVD, French/German/Diola/Wolof, Subtitled
Order No. W111036
Rapper, singer and activist, Sister Fa is hero to young women in Senegal and an unstoppable force for social change. A childhood victim of female genital cutting (FGC), she decided to tackle the issue by starting a grassroots campaign, “Education Without Excision,” which uses her music and persuasive powers to end the practice. But until 2010 there’s one place she had never brought her message – back home to her own village of Thionck Essyl, where she fears rejection. SARABAH follows Sister Fa on this challenging journey, where she speaks out passionately to female elders and students alike, and stages a rousing concert that has the community on its feet. A portrait of an artist as activist, SARABAH shows the extraordinary resilience, passion and creativity of a woman who boldly challenges gender and cultural norms. It’s an inspiring story of courage, hope and change.


WINNER Cine Golden Eagle
Movies That Matter Film Festival, Winner, Golden Butterfly Award
Best Mid-Length Documentary, Montreal International Black Film Festival

  • Mill Valley Film Festival
  • Heartland Film Festival
  • St. John's Int'l Women's Film Festival
  • Citizen Jane Film Festival
  • Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival
  • Salem Film Fest
  • Nashville Film Festival
  • Michigan Womyns Music Festival
  • Berkshire International Film Festival
  • Montreal Black Film Festival
  • Reykjavik Shorts&Docs Festival

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    "Highly recommended. A moving and hopeful documentary..skillfully addresses the complexities of social transformation that challenge traditions and beliefs about women’s socialization."
    Marianne Sarkis, Ph.D.
    Assistant Prof. of Int'l Development and Social Change, Clark University

    "Give(s) us the exuberance and drive of a young woman artist whose brand of stardom eschews designer gowns and red carpets. She is Sister Fa. Her medium is rap and hip-hop and her message is emancipation."
    Dr. Betty Levitov
    African Studies, Doane College

    “For a continent in which almost half the population is under 15 years old, Sister Fa’s fierce combination of talent and activism may be the most effective formula for social change.”
    Ms. Magazine Blog

    "Highly recommended… This film does a remarkable job of promoting education about "a painful tradition" without falling into clichés or stereotypes... Beyond this larger story, the film also demonstrates the power of music..."
    Educational Media Reviews On-Line

    "The film is a sensitive portrait of a woman whose artistic life has become wholly devoted to the awareness and education music can bring to people...Ultimately hopeful and inspiring, the film depicts strategies for education and organizing using music for social change."
    Films for the Feminist Classroom

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    Sarabah 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