Category: tilonia

girl power

MAHILA – the movie

In MAHILA (women), the filmmaker steps between different worlds, going from West to East, from urban to rural surroundings. Her encounters with the experiences and observations of rural Rajasthani women provoke reflection on the process of empowerment. In an artistic ethnography we see and hear how they are using education, technology and politics to redefine their destinies. As we trace the film-maker’s memories we are taken into questions about story-telling. How are the women fighting to get their stories heard? Can the filmmaker tell other women’s stories?

Signals from the South, Muu Gallery Helsinki 2009
Finnish Cultural Institute, Damascus , november 2009
Brigittines Brussels, 5 december 2009 19u
Lazareti Dubrovnik (croatia), 10 december 2009 19u
Netwerk Aalst, 17 december 2009 19u
okno Brussels, 17 january 2010 20u
Pixelache Festival Helsinki 2010
medialab Vienna, 20 february 2010 20u
happy new festival Kortrijk , may 2010
KASK Gent, june 2010
Soft Borders exhibition Sao Paulo, october 2011

questionnaire01 / Barefoot College, Rajasthan

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tilonia map

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Barefoot College, Tilonia, Rajasthan, India.

thoughts – kristin prevallet

I am in India, in a small village, where an ashram has been built for women and girls to learn about their right to be educated.
As with all the houses in the village, the ashram is made out of clay. Slogans are painted onto the walls to help boost the revolutionary spirit of the place.
“Lack of knowledge is the cause of fear,” You can kill the body but never the spirit,” Work is worship.”

The ashram also serves as ground zero for a group of poor farmers attempting to seize land from the wealthy, large landowners who live in the cities. The farmers have successfully seized 20,000 acres.
The man in charge of this struggle was educated in Deli, and his philosophy of land ownership is derived not from Marx, but rather from the true democracy established by tribal systems-particularly the Iroquois constitution, which historically is the document on which America’s constitution is based.

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women thoughts – solar engineers

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Women from several African and Asian countries in a training/workshop in India learning about photovoltaic solar energy.
streaming movie — 02:30 // free art license CIK.

women thoughts – rose akumu

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Interview with Rose Akumu, as part of the Politics of Change project.
streaming movie — 04:30 // free art license CIK.

thoughts – Sarju Bhanwar Gopal Panwar

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interview with Sarju Bhanwar Gopal Panwar, handicraft designer at Barefoot College, Rajasthan, India.
streaming movie — 04:30

My name is Sarju, I’m 50 years old and I work at Barefoot College since 1981. I lead the handicraft department. I never got a proper training as a designer. I learned everything myself, and now I teach other women. I get my inspiration for the designs out of our daily life. I’ve never seen any books, I work with my imagination.

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interview with Vasu, facilitator at Barefoot College

Barefoot College has changed a lot compared to 36 years ago when we started. What is applicable in Tilonia – its overall vision – can be replicated anywhere else. In this country and abroad, but it needs a change of mindsets.
We are organized in a disorganized way. We have small committees for different topics. We have the housing committee, the water committee, the salary committee. Salaries can go up and down, depending on your performance. You have also the possibility to evaluate yourself. Poverty, teamwork, gender are all issues coming into play for evaluation. Points are added up, but nobody can get more than 100 U$.
The options are open. The organization is set up as a community so obviously there will always be somebody to run it.

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Mangi Devi :: Educator.

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Mangi Devi. Educator.
streaming video — 03:20

My Name is Mangi Devi, I am a resident of Tilonia village. The Tillonia organisation ‘Barefoot College’ is about 30 years old now . I have worked in four different departments. I started in the handicraft section and now I am in the education department.
My fathers village is about 35 kms away from here, it’s called Bhiwanwadi. I was illiterate when I arrived here and the organization provided me with education and now I am literate. I belong to the Barwasamaj caste, people from this caste usually are into fieldwork and farming.
I don’t remember when I got married, it was a child-marriage. It was not common to give a dowry in our caste. My family gave a few small items but my in-laws were not asking for money.They wanted the girl and it was good so. My in laws are good and till this date me and my husband don’t fight. We work independently.
My husbands’ name is Tejaram. He works in Kishangar and he has no issues with the organisation here. He is very supportive and we don’t interfere in each others professional life. It has been said that a car has 4 wheels and if one wheel doesn’t work then car doesn’t move and my life with him has been like that.
I have 2 sons and they also have kids who are 28 and 25 years of age. And I have an older daughter too. I am a great-grandmother. I am about 55 years old.

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