Friday, March 30, 2007

Born into Brothels

Last night we watched the excellent documentary Born Into Brothels.

It chronicles the lives of kids of about 8-10 years old, whose mothers live and work in the red light district of Calcutta. An amazing woman named Zana Briski went to photograph the women and ended up finding the kids. The kids begged her to teach them about photography so she had a class, gave them cameras and critiqued their work.

In a way, I wish the title was different because the movie is really about art and creativity inspiring and engaging and offering a way out of a life that is not satisfying.

I think one thing that touched me is that it reminded me of the Clemente Course -- this is a pretty extreme analogy -- in terms of introducing people to a new "language" be it literature, art, history, and opening up their world to new possibilities and potential futures.

The film won an Academy Award and Briski sells the kids' photos (and in a book) to help pay for their educations. She also started a non-profit to continue this work called Kids with Cameras.

Check it out.

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