Pride & Progress - Film festival and symposium


Friday, October 25, 2019 (All day)




The Carr Center for Human Rights Policy, David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies - Central America and the Caribbean Program, Harvard Business School, Harvard University Center for African Studies, Program on Law and Society in the Muslim World at Harvard Law School, Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute, Cambridge Human Rights Commission, Cambridge LGBTQ+ Commission, HKS Women Network, and Harvardwood welcomes you to Pride & Progress: Film Festival and Symposium.


Pride & Progress: Film Festival and Symposium brings together diverse human rights filmmakers and activists who are leading the cultural fight against laws that criminalize and discriminate against LGBTQ+ people in the former British colonies. These ancient vestiges of imperialism are used to police and punish LGBTQ+ peoples, identities, and relationships in 37 of the 53 Commonwealth countries, leading to persistent prejudice from both the government and broader public that prevent queer people from enjoying basic freedoms, equal rights, and human dignity.


The principal aims of this film festival and symposium are to highlight the brave cultural work being done through film and to motivate audiences to stand up against these unjust laws and take action to change them. We also recognize that some countries have recently taken strides to overturn these oppressive and outdated laws, and Pride & Progress will highlight this promising work as well. Join us!


9:00 - 9:30 am Opening of Pride & Progress: Film Festival & Symposium (RUBENSTEIN R-414 A.B)
Introduction: Timothy Patrick McCarthy and Yasmin Padamsee Forbes, Curators of Pride & Progress


9:30 – 12:00 pm Best practice from Africa (R-414 A.B)

Documentary: Call Me Kuchu (1 hr 30 mins)

Moderator: Timothy Patrick McCarthy



Qwin Mbabazi - Community Engagement Coordinator, GLBTQ Legal Advocates

John Abdallah Wambere - Activist and star of the documentary Call Me Kuchu

Katherine Fairfax Wright – Director/Cinematographer/Editor, Call Me Kuchu

Audience Q&A


9:30 – 12:00 pm Best practice from the Caribbean (WEX-434 A.B )

Documentary: The Abominable Crime (1 hr 6 mins)

Moderator: Ming Li (Ari) Wu



Micah Fink – Director/Producer of The Abominable Crime

Maurice Tomlinson ­ – Lawyer, gay rights activist, and educator

Audience Q&A


12:15 – 12:50 pm Forging New Paths: Telling LGBTQ Stories on TV (Brown Bag R-414 A.B)
Dr. Neal Baer – Lecturer, Doctor, Executive Producer of Designated Survivor, ER, and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit

Audience Q&A


1:00 – 3:00 pm Best practice from Middle East and North Africa (WEX-434 A.B)
Documentary: A Jihad for Love, 2008 (1 hr 20 mins)

Moderator: Eric Mawira Gitari



Sa’ed Atshan – Assistant Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies at Swarthmore College

Parvez Sharma – Director/Actor, A Jihad for Love

Audience Q&A


1:00 – 3:00 pm Best practice from Asia (R-414 A.B)

Documentary: A simple love story (20 mins) Myanmar

Documentary: I am (1 hr 15 mins) (India)

Moderator: Yasmin Padamsee Forbes



Hnin Pa Pa Soe – Director, A simple love story

Sonali Gulati – Director/Actor “I am”

Esther Htusan – Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and former Nieman Fellow

Audience Q&A


3:15 - 5:15 pm Legislating Change: Decriminalization across the World and Social Movements (R-414 A.B)

Documentary: Out & Around (60 mins)

Moderator: Erica Chenoweth, Professor of Public Policy at Harvard Kennedy School



Lisa Dazols – Director of Out & Around

Yee Htun – Lecturer, Harvard Law School

Eric Mawira Gitari – S.J.D. Candidate, Harvard Law School

Audience Q&A


5:20 – 6:00 pm Fireside Chat with movie clips influencing social change (R-414 A.B)

Tom DeSanto - Kidnapped For Christ, Lost in America, X-Men, Transformers

Indrani Pal-Chaudhuri – Director, Photographer, Author, Activist

Audience Q&A


6:00 pm Closing remarks (R-414 A.B)

Mark Elliott, Vice Provost of International Affairs at Harvard University