Distributor:  Icarus Films
Length:  26 minutes
Date:  2001
Genre:  Expository
Language:  Arabic / English subtitles
Grade level: 9-12, College, Adult
Color/BW:  Color
You must register and login to preview and purchase items.

Birth

New to Docuseek2? Please register and login to preview and/or license this film. If your institution has already licensed this film, you will need to access this page from your institution's network to watch the film. For help on using Docuseek2, please visit our help wiki.

The story of a woman caught up in a cycle of pregnancies because of social pressure to produce a male child, and two other stories of babies, in need, or absent, in Arab countries.

Birth

Three powerful stories are told in this film: the story of an unwanted baby, the story of a baby whose future is in jeopardy, and the story of an absent baby.

The story that opens and closes the episode takes place in Palestine. Fatima is caught up in a cycle of pregnancies because of the social pressure to produce a male child. Her current pregnancy is her sixth. Fatima's determination to give birth to yet another child is motivated primarily by her fear that her husband will marry another woman, if she cannot give him a son.

In Baghdad, Daoud is a sick baby born under the international sanctions against Iraq. Providing basic nourishment and vaccinations is an uphill struggle. His parents discuss their fears about the fate of children born in Iraq today.

Roza lives in a Syrian village. After many years of childless marriage, she has learned that her husband has the fertility problem, not her. This is a revealing and moving saga of a woman caught between yearning to have a child and trying to assert herself within the traditional codes and expectations of her society.

'[ARAB DIARIES] presents a rare critical insight into contemporary life in the Arab world. The quality of sound and cinematography of this series is superb. The films contain a rich source of information on a culture that is often guarded from the west. It dares to bring up strong issues without imposing judgment on the values discussed. The series is a good example of how much more we have to learn about the Middle East - the films managed to raise an eyebrow once or twice, even though I spent almost 20 years in that region. Highly recommended to all kinds of libraries, especially academic libraries with undergraduate studies related to culture, anthropology, or Middle Eastern studies, as well as libraries with internship programs in the Middle East.' - Educational Media Reviews Online

Citation

Main credits

Davies, Deborah (film producer)
Kuttab, Daoud (film producer)
Ziv, Ilan (film producer)
Ferraj, Suheir (filmmaker)
Hashim, Abbas (filmmaker)
Esber, Abeer (filmmaker)

Other credits

Editor, Nahed Awwad; music, Ross Lossing.


Distributor credits

Filmmakers: Suheir Farraj (Palestine), Abbas Hashim (Iraq), and Abeer Esber (Syria)
Producers: Deborah Davies, Daoud Kuttab and Ilan Ziv

Docuseek2 subjects

Syria
Iraq
Israel / Palestine
Maternal and Child Health
Women's Studies
Sociology

Distributor subjects

Adolescence
Middle East
Religion
Sociology
Women's Health
Women's Studies

Keywords

Film; Video; Documentary; Arab; Palestine; Iraq; Syrian; Pregnancy; Patriarchal Society; Birth; Mother; Islam; Muslim; ; ; "Birth"; Icarus Films

Welcome to Docuseek2!

Docuseek2 is a streaming platform of the best documentary and social issue films available for the higher education community.

Anyone may search for titles and find detailed information about the titles. To preview films or license them for streaming, you must register and login.

Currently, we support online registration for anyone affiliated with a higher education institution. Please inquire if you are with a K-12 district or school or with a public library.

Click the Close button to get started!