Doha Debates– Don't settle for a Divided World
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Short Films

Our short films aim to tackle tough social issues and global problems by putting the spotlight on underrepresented stories. These productions are about raising the voices of the people directly affected by the world’s most pressing and complex issues –– climate change, inequality, globalization, discrimination, displacement. Take a deep dive into our film archive and explore these topics with our film guides and discussion activities.

4 lessons

01. Exodus



Exodus is a short documentary about three young Rohingya Muslims living in the world’s largest refugee camp in Bangladesh after being driven out of Myanmar. Armed with just their phones and photography skills, they are using the power of social media to raise awareness about their situation. Consider these essential questions while watching the film.

  1. What role can social media play to improve life for refugee communities around the world?
  2. How have the Rohingya been dispossessed of their identity?
  3. How can the art of photography influence global decision makers?
  4. Can refugees ever truly be in control of their own narrative?

Complete film guide and activities for educators: Exodus Film Guide

02. (Un)divided

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This Doha Debates production tells the true story of Amina, an Iraqi-American refugee and Muslim, and Joseph Weidknecht, a Trump supporter who was afraid of Muslims in America — until he met Amina. The film captures the essence of how people at opposite ends of the political divide can actually find common ground and put that at the service of a better conversation. Consider these essential questions while watching the film.

  1. Is it possible in today’s polarized world for people from opposite extremes to have constructive, civilized conversations about their views on tough issues like politics, immigration, racism, etc.?
  2. What are the factors driving us apart and how can we better understand them, put them in context and find common ground in our common humanity?
  3. What are the communication skills needed to build better conversations with people we disagree with?

Complete film guide and activities for educators: (Un)divided Film Guide

03. Cherán: The Burning Hope

Cherán: The Burning Hope documents how the Purépecha people of Cherán, Mexico, took back their city by exercising their right to self-determination as an indigenous people. Consider these essential questions while watching the film.

  1. What is the right to self-determination and how is it related to citizen action in situations where people feel powerless?
  2. What can we learn by examining seemingly unrelated situations of power imbalance in different parts of the world, such as indigenous communities in Latin America or urban blight in U.S. cities?
  3. In what ways is personal autonomy related to collective self-determination?
  4. What are some tools of filmmaking that can give us a new perspective  to see local problems in global terms?

Complete film guide and activities for educators: Cherán Film Guide

04. Into the Sea

Into the Sea is a short documentary about a refugee family hoping to resettle in Greece after fleeing Afghanistan. It documents the precarious uncertainty of their present situation as well as their hopes for the future. Consider these essential questions while watching the film.

  1. What does “home” mean to you? Think about all the elements, both tangible and intangible, that you would include in your description. What would you miss most if you had to leave your home and your city?
  2. If a refugee or migrant family moved in next door to you, think about what their needs might be. Would you offer to help in some way? How?
  3. Were you surprised by the boy’s description of what he expected his new home to have? Why or why not? How does it compare to your own description of home?
  4. Discuss the significance of the film’s title. Do you think it is a good one? Why or why not? How do the filmmakers use the sea to frame the story visually and metaphorically?

Complete film guide and activities for educators: Into the Sea Film Guide


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Short Films