Screening and filmmaker commentary: Bosnian women speak out in "I Came To Testify"I Came to Testify, one of the five episodes in the Women, War & Peace series.
I Came to Testify is the moving story of how a group of women imprisoned in the Bosnian town Foca broke history's great silence and stepped forward to take the witness stand in an international court of law. The film focuses on a crucial and all but forgotten turning point when wartime atrocities against women were first defined not as the inevitable byproduct of war but as punishable crimes in a court of law. When the Balkans exploded into war in the 1990s, reports that tens of thousands of women were being systematically raped as a tactic of ethnic cleansing captured the international spotlight. The film reveals how 16 women who had been imprisoned by Serb-led forces in the Bosnian town of Foca broke history’s great silence. When an innovative female-led legal team at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia shaped their case into the first trial in history to focus exclusively on wartime crimes of sexual violence, the women stepped forward to take the witness stand and changed the rules of war forever.
After the screening, there will be commentary and conversation with the filmmaker and Co-creator of Women, War & Peace, Pamela Hogan, and Refik Hodzic of the International Center for Transitional Justice. Discussion will explore the potential and the limitations of the law to transform the gender dynamic of war, and the ways in which a groundbreaking decision at the Hague - while a start - is only one step towards justice and reconciliation.
Wednesday, April 18th
7:00 PM, Case Lounge
Columbia Law School
View the film's trailer on pbs.org