Writer, Director to attend Screening of Post-9/11 Documentary
October 24, 2006
BLOOMINGTON, Ill. - Illinois Wesleyan University's South Asian Student Association
(SASA) will host the Midwest premiere of the documentary Divided We Fall, Americans in the Aftermath Friday, Oct. 27, at 7 p.m. in the Hansen Student Center, 300 Beecher, in Bloomington.
Co-producers Valerie Kaur, who wrote the film, and Sharat Raju, who directed, will
attend the event and answer questions after the screening.
The film documents the largely untold stories of violence against Sikh and Muslim
Americans in the aftermath of September 11. According to the FBI, in 2001 there were
1,501 recorded hate crimes against Muslims-four times more than in 2000-and nearly
80 percent of the 2001 crimes took place in the month of September.
Prompted by episodes of violence in her community, Kaur left Stanford University during
her junior year and began filming the documentary less than a month after 9/11. Over
four months, she and her cousin, who was her cameraman, traveled to 14 cities to capture
the sense of fear, loss, resilience and hope expressed by Americans in the wake of
the tragedy. Kaur then returned to Stanford and incorporated her findings into an
honors thesis, which won Stanford's Golden Medal for the Humanities in 2003.
In 2004, award-winning director Raju and his film crew joined Kaur, retracing her
steps across the United States in order to turn her amateur film into a feature-length
documentary. Five years after Kaur began her trek, the team released the film on
Sept. 14, in commemoration of the death of Balbir Singh Sodhi, the first victim of
a post-9/11 hate crime.
For additional information about the film screening, contact SASA President Amee Patel
Contact: Rebecca Welzenbach, (309) 556-3181