Introduction to Watch and Listen: Films and Podcasts


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Introduction to Watch and Listen: Films and Podcasts

In recent years, documentaries, films, short films and podcasts have played a significant role in breaking the silence and overcoming the stigma surrounding menstruation. They have 
also increased awareness about the importance of MHH. Here are some recent examples. 
My Monthly Exile - Visualizing menstrual practices and motivations in the far west of Nepal using collaborative filmmaking 
Documentary by Sara Baumann, 2020 
Seven girls from a village in the Kanchanpur district of Nepal learn filmmaking to capture their experiences of menstruation in vignettes. They highlight the diversity 
of empowering and disempowering menstrual practices and beliefs in their community. Collaborative filmmaking, an arts-based participatory research method, allows community filmmakers to collaborate with researchers in collecting, analyzing and disseminating data. The method helped capture sensory knowledge, leading to a nuanced understanding of different menstrual practices and beliefs. The resulting documentary film not only raised awareness about traditional menstrual practices in the far west of Nepal, it also informed policymakers to help improve menstrual health for women and girls in the region. 
Period. End of Sentence. 
Documentary, Netflix, 2019 
In 2019 “Period. End of sentence.” won the Oscar for Best Documentary (Short Subject). It is a 30-minute film documenting the stigmas surrounding menstruation and follows a group of women in India that have started to work in a collective to produce sanitary pads for their 
communities. The documentary also shows interviews with Arunachalam Muruganantham (“Pad Man”). 
Pandora’s Box 
Lifting the lid on menstruation 
Documentary, Diva International, 2020 
Pandora’s Box is a feature-length documentary film presented by Diva. Produced and directed by a primarily female crew, it takes us on a global journey through India, Uganda, the UK and North America to explore the cultural and social subjugation of people who menstruate. Pandora’s Box asks us to lift the lid on menstruation and truly consider how eliminating period stigma can help create gender equality. 
Tackling Taboos #NepalsMenstrualMovement 
Short film, GIZ, 2021 
In this award-winning short film, Keki Adikhari — a well-known actress, model and film producer in her native Nepal, who has over 1.5 million followers on social media — wants to find out how far Nepal has come in the fight against menstrual taboos and restrictions. 
She takes the viewer on a journey to the far west of the country, where she visits a school and a village in a rural area to learn what has changed in girls’ and women’s daily lives — and what still needs to be done to ensure that every girl in Nepal can thrive during her period. 
28ish Days Later — Podcast 
Podcast, BBC, 2022 
This intimate, bold and taboo-busting podcast series explores the menstrual cycle — the science, drama, history, personal stories and politics in-between. India Rakusen explores the whole story, discovering facts that could change your life. Periods are just the beginning. In this BBC podcast series, the menstrual cycle is explored from the beginning of bleeding to the start of the next cycle. Listeners will discover how gaining knowledge about hormones and the menstrual cycle can change their lives, one day at a time. 
Posted by a member of the SuSanA secretariat held by the GIZ Sector Program Water Policy – Innovations for Resilience
Located at Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, Bonn, Germany
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