Orania - Q&A with director Tobias Lindner

• February 10th, 2015

Orania is situated in South Africa’s Northern Cape province. All of the 800 inhabitants are white Afrikaans people, also referred to as Boers. They refuse to be part of the “Rainbow Nation”. With their own flag and currency the inhabitants create a cultural homeland to preserve their heritage and live independently from the state.

Director Tobias Lindner carefully observes this culturally homogeneous society situated in the middle of a multicultural country, and explores the mechanisms behind the societal experiment. It would be easy to play on the town’s eccentricities, instead Lindner thoughtfully portrays a community where the lines are blurred between open discrimination and the right to self-determination and preservation of tradition.

Directed by Tobias Lindner
Duration: 94′
Year: 2012f

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Photography Networking Party

• February 3rd, 2015
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Insight with Michael Žantovský: Havel and the Velvet Revolution

• November 3rd, 2014

his event is organised by the Czech Centre London.

Twenty five years ago in December 1989, Václav Havel was elected as President of Czechoslovakia, marking the end of the Velvet Revolution and with it, the culmination of 41 years of communist rule.

Before becoming a statesman, Havel was a playwright, essayist, dissident and philosopher. His political activities during the communist regime brought him under the surveillance of the secret police and led to multiple prison stints, including a four-year incarceration between 1979 and 1983. His Civic Forum Party played a major role in the Velvet Revolution, and Havel himself was instrumental in dismantling the Warsaw Pact and expanding NATO eastwards. Above all, however, he remained an intellectual and an artist.

By his side throughout was Michael Žantovský, Havel’s press secretary, speech-writer, translator and close friend. The pair met as dissidents under communist rule and remained close until Havel’s death in 2011. Žantovský will be joining us in conversation with Edward Lucas, senior editor at The Economist, to bear witness to Havel’s extraordinary life as documented in his new bookHavel: A Life, and to share his own experiences of living through the Velvet Revolution and the formation of the Czech Republic.

Michael Žantovský is the current Czech Ambassador to the Court of St James. He was among the founding members of the movement that coordinated the overthrow of the communist regime. In January 1990, he became the spokesman, press secretary and advisor to his lifelong friend, President Václav Havel. He has combined a career in politics and the foreign service with work as an author and translator into Czech of many contemporary British and American writers.

Part of the Made in Prague Festival, 17 October – 30 November 2014.

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Insight with Gabriella Coleman: Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy

• October 30th, 2014

Anonymous, a group of hackers, activists and technologists, came to the fore in 2008 when they attacked the church of Scientology. Since then their coordinated collective action has come up against global corporations and supported the Arab revolutionaries, but how much do we know about who they are and what motivates them?

Six years ago Gabriella Coleman, an anthropologist, set out to study the rise of this global phenomenon just as some of its members were turning to political protest and dangerous disruption.

Coleman will be joining us in conversation with Ben Hammersley, presenter of the new BBC World News series Cybercrime with Ben Hammersley, to share her story of becoming an Anonymous confidante, interpreter, and erstwhile mouthpiece. She will be talking about the motivations of the group, the meaning of digital activism and the many facets of culture in the Internet age.

Gabriella Coleman holds the Wolfe Chair in Scientific and Technological Literacy at McGill University. Trained as a cultural anthropologist, she researches, writes about, and teaches on computer hackers and digital activism. She is the author of Coding Freedom: The Ethics and Aesthetics of Hacking and most recently Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy: The Many Faces of Anonymous.

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Conflict and Disaster Reporting: Does the Public Still Care?

• October 23rd, 2014

This event is organised by the Overseas Development Institute (ODI).

On 23 October 1984, the BBC aired a landmark report on the famine in Ethiopia. Describing the crisis as a ‘biblical famine’, the report galvanised the public, spurred the UK government into action and prompted the creation of the infamous Live Aid concert.

Now 30 years on, is media reporting of today’s conflicts and disasters having the same effect on the public and has the nature of conflict and disaster reporting changed? How are journalists adapting to these changes?

How are humanitarian organisations working with media outlets to help generate interest and understanding of the crises affecting millions of civilians around the world?

Join the Overseas Development Institute (ODI) as they examine the current state of conflict and disaster reporting and how humanitarian agencies can work with the media to raise awareness and much-needed funds.

Chaired by Ben Parker who has worked in media and humanitarian response for over 20 years. He co-founded the IRIN humanitarian news service in 1995. As well as a reporter and editor, he has been an aid worker, most recently as head of UN’s humanitarian office in Syria in 2012, and as UN director of communications in Somalia.

The panel:

Juliana Ruhfus, senior reporter for the People and Power programme on Al Jazeera English, specialising in investigative work. Her journalistic work with Channel 4, BBC and now Al Jazeera has taken her to over 30 countries, including Somalia, Yemen, Haiti, Libya and Sri Lanka after the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami.

Marc DuBois was the head of Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) UK from 2008–14. He has worked in the front lines of humanitarian crises for MSF in countries including Sudan and Angola.

Jon Snow, Channel 4 News anchor since 1989. During his career he has covered conflicts in countries including Iraq, Afghanistan, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Angola as well as the Haiti earthquake and the recent crisis in Gaza.

Eva Svoboda, research fellow in the Humanitarian Policy Group at the Overseas Development Institute. She has worked for various NGOs and the ICRC in emergencies in the Middle East, Africa and Asia.

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Eyes Wide Shut? Will the Future of Journalism Mean We Are Better Informed?

• October 22nd, 2014

The discussion will tackle questions about whether changes within journalism will leave the public knowing more or less than they have in the past. Will new technologies bring us greater depth of information? Will news survive or will celebrity gossip take over? Will citizen journalism carry more weight than traditional TV channels?

The debate will be introduced by magazine editor Rachael Jolley and hosted by columnist, author and Index on Censorship chairman David Aaronovitch.

Speakers include:

Richard Sambrook, professor of journalism and director of the Centre for Journalism at Cardiff University and former director of global news at the BBC.

Raymond Joseph, data journalist and former regional editor of the South African Sunday Times.

Rachel Briggs, director of Hostage UK and deputy director of the Institute of Strategic Dialogue.

Amie Ferris-Rotman, John S. Knight Journalism Fellow at Stanford University and former senior correspondent for Reuters in Afghanistan.

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First Wednesday: The Fight Against Ebola

• October 1st, 2014

he World Health Organisation (WHO) has described the Ebola epidemic in West Africa as “unparalleled in modern times”. In the largest and most complex outbreak since the virus was discovered in 1976, more than 3,000 people have died.

Originating in Guinea, the virus has spread to Sierra Leone, Liberia, Nigeria and Senegal. Now six months into this epidemic, we will be asking why has it taken so long for the international community to act?

We will be joined by a panel of experts to take a view of the situation on the ground, how Ebola is being combated and what more needs to be done. We will also be looking at the stigma that surrounds the virus and the long-term impact this outbreak will have on the region.

Chaired by Ade Daramy, chair and spokesperson for the UK Sierra Leone Ebola Task Force.

The panel:

Dr Tim O’Dempsey, a senior clinical lecturer in tropical medicine at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine. He was seconded to WHO as clinical lead for the Ebola Treatment Centre in Kenema, Sierra Leone (July-August 2014). He is currently advising DFID and Save the Children regarding the Ebola epidemic response in West Africa and is due to return to Sierra Leone in October 2014 as clinical lead for the newly constructed Ebola Treatment Centre in Kerrytown.

Colin Freeman, the chief foreign correspondent for the Sunday Telegraph and author of Kidnapped: Life as a Somali Pirate Hostage. He has recently returned from West Africa.

Dr Ike Anya, a Nigerian public health doctor, writer, co-editor of Nigeria Health Watch and co-founder of the Nigeria Public Health Network. He is an honorary lecturer in public health medicine at Imperial College and a TEDGlobal Fellow.

Professor David Heymann CBE, chairman of Public Health England, professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and head of the Centre on Global Health Security at Chatham House.

Meinie Nicolai, president of both MSF Belgium and MSF’s operational directorate in Brussels. She first worked with MSF in 1992, as a supervising nurse in Liberia. She has since gained a decade of field experience in Angola, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Somalia and South Sudan. She has recently returned from West Africa.

The following day the Fleet Street Clinic will be giving a briefing and a practical update on personal protection for journalists covering the Ebola outbreak. 

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From Al Qaeda to ISIS: Terrorists Tactics

• September 24th, 2014

Thirteen years on from the 9/11 terrorist attack on the US by Al Qaeda, how has the organisation evolved around the world and what are its links with developing groups such a ISIS and al-Shabaab?

With sophisticated social media strategies and professional promotional videos, we will be looking at the tactics being deployed, both on the ground and online, and how they differ from what we have seen from Al Qaeda.

A panel of experts will be joining us to examine the tactics and strategies these affiliated groups have developed and what is being done to combat them.

Chaired by foreign affairs editor of Sky News, Sam Kiley.

The panel:

Peter Neumann is professor of security studies at the department of war studies, King’s College London, and serves as director of the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation (ICSR), which he founded in early 2008.

Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi is a student at Brasenose College, Oxford University, and a Shillman-Ginsburg fellow at the Middle East Forum. He focuses on developments in Syria and Iraq, particularly jihadist militant groups.

Patrick Cockburn, a Middle East correspondent since 1979, first for the Financial Times, then for The Independent. He has covered the conflict in Syria extensively since protests began in 2011. He is author of several books including The Occupation: War and Resistance in Iraq, Muqtada Al-Sadr and the Battle for the Future of Iraq and most recently The Jihadis Return: Isis and the New Sunni Uprising.

Dr Alia Brahimi is a visiting research fellow at the Oxford University Changing Character of War Programme at Pembroke College, Oxford. She was previously a research fellow at LSE and a research fellow at St Antony’s College, Oxford. She is the author of Jihad and Just War in the War on Terror, as well as a number of academic and press articles on al-Qaeda’s evolving ideology and strategy.

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Preview Screening: In the Shadow of War + Q&A

• September 22nd, 2014

This screening will be followed by a Q&A with co-directors Sophia Scott and Georgia Scott and executive producer Christopher Hird.

Almost 20 years ago, the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina came to an end. Children born after the fighting stopped are entering adulthood today, but are still facing violence, abuse and abandonment. Through the stories of four remarkable young people, filmmakers Sophia Scott and Georgia Scott capture the hopes and dreams of this new generation, forced to live with the ongoing effects of the war.

Ante is struggling to define his own identity after his father was convicted of war crimes, for which he is now serving a 20-year sentence. Magdalena’s abusive father struggles to recognise his post-traumatic stress disorder. Ilija has been rejected by his mother who refuses to tell him who his biological father is.

In the Shadow of War is a poignant account of the ongoing consequences of war – of its psychological effects that can last for decades and the great strains it imposes on society as a whole.

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Screening: The Process + Q&A

• September 19th, 2014

Journalist and filmmaker Joshua Baker documents the stories of three lives caught up in the on-going Israeli–Palestinian conflict. He highlights the void between the political negotiations around the peace process and the reality on the ground.

This reality is depicted through the life of a 20-something Israeli settler, a seven-year-old Palestinian boy and the ambitions of an over-confident 17-year-old Palestinian. Their stories illustrate the human dimension of the recently collapsed Middle East peace talks.

The Process gives a snapshot of contemporary life inside the conflict, revealing what the politics mean for those who are waiting for peace. It is a tale from the ground, of life governed from above.

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Libya: A Failed State?

• September 17th, 2014

Is Libya on the brink of becoming a failed state? Three years after Nato-backed rebels overthrew Muammar Gaddafi and the country was held up as the success story of the Arab Spring, Libya is deeply divided.

The fragile government, which has seen three prime ministers since March, has been unable to impose authority on militia groups who refuse to disband. Power, fuel and water shortages disrupt daily life, the economy has not been restored, and the planned new constitution remains as yet unwritten.

As Libya’s parliament calls for foreign intervention to protect civilians from deadly clashes between rival militia groups, we will be asking what has gone wrong in the country. Where do the divisions lie and what can be done to pull the county away from becoming a failed state? We will be examining what the role of the international community should be in supporting Libya in its transition to democracy.

Chaired by Lindsey Hilsum, international editor at Channel 4 News and author of Sandstorm; Libya in the Time of Revolution.

The panel:

Huda Abuzeid is a filmmaker and TV producer who has been based in Libya since the start of the revolution in 2011. She is currently the director of the Rashad Foundation, a Tripoli based NGO, which initiates projects to support Libya’s transitional process.

Chris Stephen, Libya Correspondent for The Guardian and author of Judgement Day: The Trial of Slobodan Milosevic.

Ghazi Gheblawi, a writer, surgeon, public speaker and the editor of el-Kaf online newspaper on Libyan affairs.

Hassan al-Amin, a human rights activist and founder of Libya al-Mostakbal (The Future Libya). He is a former member of Libyan General National Congress and head of its Human Rights Committee.

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Preview Screening: Night Will Fall + Q&A

• September 16th, 2014

This screening will be followed by a Q&A with director André Singer and producer Sally Angel.

In 1945, a team of top filmmakers came together to make a documentary about the horrific findings in the concentration camps. This film would provide lasting, undeniable evidence of the Nazis’ unspeakable crimes. Led by Sidney Bernstein, founder of Granada TV, the making of the film also involved editor Stewart McAllister, writer and future cabinet minister Richard Crossman, and, as treatment adviser, Alfred Hitchcock. Despite initial support from the British and US governments, the film was never finished. Today, 70 years on, it has been restored and completed by Imperial War Museums.

Using original archive footage and eyewitness testimonies, Night Will Fall tells the extraordinary story of the filming of the camps by British, American and Soviet cameramen. Acclaimed filmmaker André Singer chronicles the untold story of this film’s history and the fate of Bernstein’s project.

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Forget the Future: What’s Happening in Journalism Now? Part 2

• September 11th, 2014

With everyone talking about the future of journalism, it’s easy to forget what’s happening now. Do paywalls work? Is the industry still in crisis? Is it still too white and middle class? And where are the jobs?

Grapevine Events will be inviting some of the country’s top editors for a night of questions – and answers.
Second Panel 8:50 – 9:50 PM
Chaired by George Brock.
Amol Rajan, editor, The Independent.
Emma Tucker, deputy editor, The Times.
Ian Hislop, editor, Private Eye.
Alex Miller, editor, VICE.

This event is the third in a series organised by Grapevine Events.

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Forget the Future: What’s Happening in Journalism Now? Part 1

• September 11th, 2014

With everyone talking about the future of journalism, it’s easy to forget what’s happening now. Do paywalls work? Is the industry still in crisis? Is it still too white and middle class? And where are the jobs?

Grapevine Events will be inviting some of the country’s top editors for a night of questions – and answers.

Doors 7:00 PM

First Panel 7:30 – 8:20 PM
Chaired by Archie Bland.
Zing Tsjeng, digital news editor, Dazed Magazine.
Stephen Bush, assistant comment editor, The Telegraph.
Emma Hogan, Britain correspondent, The Economist.
Alex Hern, tech reporter, The Guardian.

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Insight with Nick Davies: Hack Attack

• September 9th, 2014

In July 2011, revelations that journalists from The News of the World hacked the phone of murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler created public outrage. But we were soon to learn this was just the tip of the iceberg. The revelations that followed revealed a scandal that has since engulfed Fleet Street, Scotland Yard and Downing Street.

The man behind that story, and the years of investigative work that came before it, was Nick Davies. In his new book Hack Attack: How The Truth Caught Up With Rupert MurdochDavies recounts his painstaking investigation and exposes the inside story of what went on in the newsrooms and the corridors of power.

Nick Davies will be joining us in conversation with Stewart Purvis, to talk about the investigation, the revelations and the future of press regulation. We will be asking how the press have changed in a post-Leveson world and whether they have really reformed.

Nick Davies writes investigative stories for The Guardian, and has been named Journalist of the Year, Reporter of the Year and Feature Writer of the Year in British Press Awards. He has written five books: White LiesMurder on Ward FourDark Heart,School Report and Flat Earth News.

Stewart Purvis is professor of television journalism at City University. He is a former editor-in-chief and CEO of ITN, Ofcom’s Partner for Content and Standards, and author of When Reporters Cross The Line: The Heroes, the Villains, the Hackers and the Spies.

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