Shaykha, a feature documentary, will take us from a small mosque in Tribeca, NY to the streets of Istanbul to an annual pilgrimage in Senegal to witness the leadership of three women, all of them pioneers in the Muslim world. It will show a less-known side of Islam—Sufism, the mystical path– practiced by millions of Muslims across the globe. The film will weave together the stories of Fariha Freidrich, a western Shaykha who leads a large group of followers from western converts to traditional Muslims in New York City, with the stories of her disciple and burgeoning leader, Oumou Malick, who has moved back to Senegal to forge her own path as a religious leader in a predominantly Muslim culture and Cemalnur Sargut an internationally celebrated spiritual leader who is guiding thousands to a mystical calling in Turkey, a country where Sufism was outlawed but has thrived in secret. We will witness in real time their leadership to disciples as they question the more traditional tenets of Islam, as they become more connected to their faith, and as they themselves grow as leaders. We will learn how each Shaykha, against odds, ascended to leadership. In addition, our characters will speak to the power of their female predecessors: Aisha, Mohammad’s youngest wife, Fatima, his daughter, Rabia, the Sufi saint, to show us that female religious leadership is not in fact an anomaly in the Islamic world. Seeking to address misconceptions around women in Islam, the film will ask: why, in a religion notorious for disenfranchising women, are we seeing women in such powerful roles.
Savage Memory uses the controversies surrounding the legacy of the founding father of British Anthropology to explore powerful questions surrounding history and the ways in which it is created; memory and it's fluidity; and the imprints of the spirits of the dead. Told through the lens of Malinowski's great grandson, the film weaves familial and historical perspectives with rich verite moments in the site of Malinowski's field work - the Trobriand Islands, an archipelago off the coast of Papua New Guinea. Official selection: Boston International Film Festival, Ethnocineca Vienna, Globians Doc Fest Berlin, Tawain International Film Festival, Aspekty Poland and others. Screenings at the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, the British Museum, the Australian Museum and at over 50 universities globally. Watch on iTunes or Amazon, buy the DVD and visit our website! Watch the trailer for Savage Memory:
Savage Memory Trailer
Animated segments - Savage Memory