Monthly Archives: March 2016

Sara Ross

Call for Papers: Zelikovitz Centre Graduate Symposium

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The Max and Tessie Zelikovitz Centre for Jewish Studies at Carleton University has released a call for papers to its annual Graduate Symposium. The event will be held at the centre in Ottawa on April 27th, 2016, and will feature paper presentations from both masters and doctoral students; the competition is also open to fourth year Honours Students. This year’s theme is “religion, politics, and culture,” and how they intermingle in modern society. Proposals require a short abstract of the paper (150-200 words) in addition to your personal information, emailed to . As of yet, there is no announced deadline, so make sure you submit your paper as soon as possible if you are interested in participating!

You can read the full call for papers here.

Sara Ross

A Girl in the River Oscar Win

A Girl in the River

This past Sunday the glitz and glamour of Hollywood was in full-effect. In addition to the political rancor of host Chris Rock’s comment on the boycott of the awards show by some high profile African-American industry stars, to a misguided Sam Smith claiming he was perhaps the first openly gay individual to receive an Oscar (he wasn’t, by a significant margin), there was plenty to talk about the next day around the metaphorical water cooler. However, the most impactful moment of the evening is one you may not have heard about.

The Oscar for Best Documentary (Short Subject) was awarded to a film called A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness, directed by Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy – it was her second win in the category in four years. A Girl in the River centers on the subject of honour killings in Pakistan, a practice where male relatives murder their female relatives perceived social indignations, such as the woman being the victim of rape. In 2016 it is significant that such practices are not only still in existence in some of the world’s largest countries, but that it is sometimes rampant and ignored by state actors.

The Oscar nomination in January made national news in Pakistan, so much so that Pakistan’s Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif screened the film before Obaid-Chinoy’s win. In response to the film, Sharif vowed to make tackling the issue of honour killings a top priority for his administration, and has vowed to change the laws that allow the practice to continue in his country of 200 million people. The film’s win only solidifies the movement that director Obaid-Chinoy has spurred; a bright spot in an awards season that was overshadowed by the problem of inequality and marginalization in the entertainment industry.