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Films – If Only I Were That Warrior and Negotiating Amnesia

May 13, 2016 @ 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM

| Free

This special event will see a double-feature screening of two very anticipated- award winning and not yet debuted in the UK, documentaries on the fascist occupation of Ethiopia (1936-1941). The war that preceded it saw the usage of illegal weapons of war such as mustard gas and a vicious regime in action. The occupation was illegal under the charter of the League of Nations and yet it has largely gone under the radar of mainstream historical studies.

If Only I Were That Warrior is a feature documentary film focusing on the Italian occupation of Ethiopia in 1935. Following the recent construction of a monument dedicated to Fascist general Rodolfo Graziani, the film addresses the unpunished war crimes he and others committed in the name of Mussolini’s imperial ambitions. The stories of three characters, filmed in present day Ethiopia, Italy and the United States, take the audience on a journey through the living memories and the tangible remains of the Italian occupation of Ethiopia — a journey that crosses generations and continents to today, where this often overlooked legacy still ties the fates of two nations and their people.

Negotiating Amnesia is an essay film based on research conducted at the Alinari Archive and the National Library in Florence. It focuses on the Ethiopian War of 1935-36 and the legacy of the fascist, imperial drive in Italy. Through interviews, archival images and the analysis of high-school textbooks employed in Italy since 1946, the film shifts through different historical and personal anecdotes, modes and technologies of representation.

The screenings will be followed by a discussion led by an insightful panel (TBC) to explore the legacy the occupation has had on current day Italians and Ethiopians, as well as the large community of biracial Italo-Ethiopians that it has left behind.

You can view the trailer for ‘If Only I Were That Warrior’ here.

You can view the trailer for ‘Negotiating Amnesia’ here.

The event is FREE to attend but make sure you BOOK your place by emailing 633892@soas.ac.uk with your name and affiliation.



SOAS, Vernon Square Campus
Vernon Square Penton Rise
London, WC1X 9EW United Kingdom
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