‘Gendercide’ documentary at the Angelika Thursday night

Spotlighting this injustice is “It’s a Girl,” a powerful documentary to be followed by a panel discussion Oct. 17 from 6:30–8:30 p.m. at the Angelika Film Center in Dallas.

Admission will be $5, with the advance purchase of tickets recommended by visiting gendap.org or dfwworld.org. The Gendercide Awareness Project-sponsored event is co-sponsored by SMU’s Embrey Human Rights Program, the World Affairs Council of Dallas/Fort Worth and Shadowline Films.

“It’s a Girl” tells the stories of abandoned and trafficked girls, women who suffer extreme dowry-related violence, brave mothers fighting to save their daughters’ lives and other mothers who literally would kill for a son. Such atrocities are rampant in India, China, Africa and, increasingly, Mexico, but also exist in other regions. Global experts and grassroots activists put the stories in context and advocate different paths toward change. They also lament the lack of effective action against the cultures that secretly or openly support gendercide.

“It’s unthinkable that parents can be conditioned to believe it’s acceptable to kill or abandon their own child,” says Rick Halperin, director of the Embrey Human Rights Program in SMU’s Dedman College of Humanities & Sciences. “It’s vitally important to see that the announcement, ‘It’s a girl,’ is seen as an expression of elation, rather than a death sentence.”

Halperin, three-time board chair of Amnesty International USA, will serve as moderator of the post-screening discussion to feature Karisa Cloward, an SMU political science professor associated with the John Goodwin Tower Center for Political Studies and focused on gender and politics and transnational activism; Hind Jarrah, co-founder of the Texas Muslim Women’s Foundation, which promotes understanding and respect for multicultural diversity; and Reggie Littlejohn, an internationally recognized expert on China’s one-child policy and founder-president of Women’s Rights Without Frontiers, a global coalition to expose and oppose forced abortion, gendercide and sexual slavery in China. (Littlejohn also led the international effort to free blind activist Chen Guangcheng, allowed into the United States this May.)

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