Tibetan Women Refugees Documentary Media Project

The following article is from the Summer, 1995 issue of the Snow Lion Newsletter and is for historical reference only. You can see this in context of the original newsletter here.

Documentary producers Vanessa Smith and Roslyn Dauber are seeking sponsors to enable completion of the video Tibetan Women Refugees. The work-in-progress will be screened in Beijing at the NGO Forum for the Fourth U.N. Women's Conference. The documentary focuses on tire status of Tibetan women refugees in India, Nepal, and the United States.

Since 1959 Tibetan exiles have been forced to adapt to difficult circumstances-illness, poverty, separation and loss, exile, disorientation and trauma. Tibetan Women Refugees is a personal look at how women perceive their own lives compared with those of their mothers and daughters. It foretells the continuing viability of traditional Tibetan culture in the modern world.

Inspired by the International Year of Tibetan Women, the film asks complex questions about how women refugees manage to keep themselves and their culture alive. The video explores the changing role of women in Tibetan communities; the old social patterns that support women and children in refugee settlements; their religion and spiritual culture; and the possibilities for achieving social and economic security. The video takes the viewer to diverse locations-Tibetan carpet factories in Nepal; government-in-exile sponsored nunneries; the Tibetan Children's Village; a suburban home in L.A.; remote village settlements; the Turquoise Tara Oracle; a traditional wedding in Kathmandu; and the Tibetan Institute of Medicine and Astrology.

As part of our fund-raising efforts we are offering a trek to Mustang Valley. Producer Smith resides in Kathmandu, and has been able to organize this insider's tour of Nepal based on extensive travel and research. The tour and trek runs from September 20 to Octobers, 1995. A noted anthropologist expert in the area will accompany us to the kingdom of Mustang, which was established in the 14th century. The area's Tibetan culture has remained undisturbed by modern influences. It is only accessible by foot. The trip begins in Kathmandu, where tours of holy sites and monasteries are set. A flight to Pokhara allows us to tour a refugee settlement. From Pokhara we fly to Jomsom, the launching point for the trek. We promise an unforgettable cultural experience for the serious trekker and the knowledge that the trip is also a contribution to the completion of our one-hour documentary on Tibetan women and their culture in exile.

For more information about the trek or our video, please contact Roslyn Dauber or Vanessa Smith, T.W.R.Mustang Tour, P.O. Box 2822, Malibu, CA 90265. Tel./fax 310-393-7322.email: rdauber@lgc.apc.org.

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