DER Documentary

Framing the Other

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by Ilja Kok and Willem Timmers
color, 25 min, 2011
In English and Mursi with English and French subtitles
Study guide available

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The Mursi tribe resides in the basin of the Omo River, in the east African state of Ethiopia. Mursi women are known for placing large plates in their lower lips and wearing enormous, richly decorated earrings, which has become a subject of tourist attraction in recent years.

Each year, hundreds of Western tourists come to see the unusually adorned natives; posing for camera-toting visitors has become the main source of income for the Mursi. To make more money, they embellish their “costumes” and finery to appear more exotic to the outsiders. However, by exaggerating their habits and lifestyle in such a manner they are beginning to cause their original, authentic culture to disintegrate.

Framing the Other portrays the complex relationship between tourism and indigenous communities by revealing the intimate and intriguing thoughts of a Mursi woman from Southern Ethiopia and a Dutch tourist as they prepare to meet each other. This humorous, yet simultaneously chilling film shows the destructive impact tourism has on traditional communities.

“A welcome addition to anthropology classrooms, as it provides plenty of fodder for students interested in debating the importance of dismantling the 'Other' and the perceived dangers of 'dressing up' culture.” — Shauna LaTosky, American Anthropologist.

Framing the Other Educational Guide

Training the Other Educational Guide

Training the Other: How to use the film as a basis for discussions, teachings and inspiration. Recommended for purchase along with the film, this guide includes a very thorough manual for shaping a discussion session, a workshop, or an interactive lecture. Its content is divided into three degrees of difficulty, focussing on various educational levels and purposes: from secondary schools and universities to the vocational sector. The film thus serves as a starting point to open up discussions within various fields and disciplines, such as tourism, (visual) anthropology, globalization, ethics, intercultural communication, human rights, international business, marketing, destination management and sustainable development.

  • The educational guide includes:
  • • The manual including a myriad of assignments for various purposes, and a guide for the trainer
  • Mursi's Case, a written background on the Mursi people and their relationships with tourism
  • • Director's statement
  • • Background information on the film production
  • • FAQs about the film
  • • Further readings

Film Festivals, Screenings, Awards
Jury Selection Prize, University of British Columbia Ethnographic Film Festival, Canada, 2014
Best Doc Short, Fargo Film Festival, USA, 2014
Winner, Best Film, Intimate Lens Ethnographic Film Festival, Italy, 2013
Winner, Best Short Film, Society for Visual Anthropology Film & Media Festival, USA, 2013
Silver Heart of Slavonia, Heart of Slavonia Film Festival, Croatia, 2013
Grand Prix Award, Montenegro Film Festival, Montenegro, 2012
Silver Horseshoe Award, Asterfest International Film Festival, Macedonia, 2012
Best Director, Bir Duino Human Rights Documentary Film Festival, Kyrgyzstan, 2012
Audience Award, Scenecs International Debut Film Festival, The Netherlands, 2012
NTR Special Mention, Go Short International Short Film Festival, the Netherlands, 2012
ETNOFilm festival, Croatia, 2014
ETHNOCINECA, Austria, 2014
The Archaeology Channel International Film and Video Festival, USA, 2014
Ethnografilm Festival, France, 2014
Days of Ethnographic Film, Slovenia, 2014
show more

TV Broadcasts
Korea Educational Broadcasting System, Korea, 2012
HollandDOC 24 — VPRO, The Netherlands, 2012

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Supported By Massachusetts Cultural Council National Endowment for the Humanities National Endowment for the Arts