Radical media, politics and culture.

Meet the Shack Dwellers Movement of South Africa in New York City

“A slow revolution from below fought day by day across the country.” - S’bu Zikode, President of the Shack Dwellers Movement

Please join us for a very special evening of discussion and film about Abahlali baseMjondolo (the Shack Dwellers Movement) of South Africa. Two of their leaders, Mazwi Nzimande and Reverend Mavuso, will be in the United States building networks of solidarity with those engaged in similar struggles in this country. There will be a screening of DEAR MANDELA (15 min, 2009), a documentary work-in-progress about the Shack Dwellers Movement, directed by Dara Kell & Christopher Nizza.

DATE: Sunday, 16th August, 2009 TIME: 7pm (screening starts at 7:30pm) LOCATION: Bluestockings. 172 Allen St. New York, NY 10002. Ph: 212.777.6028 DIRECTIONS: Bluestockings is located in the Lower East Side of Manhattan at 172 Allen Street between Stanton and Rivington - 1 block south of Houston and 1st Avenue. By train: F train to 2nd Ave, exit at 1st Ave, and walk one block south. By car: If you take the Houston exit off of the FDR, then turn left onto Essex (a.k.a. Avenue A), then right on Rivington, and finally right on Allen, you will be very, very close.

Abahlali baseMjondolo is the largest social movement of the poor in post-apartheid South Africa. The movement’s key demand is for ‘Land & Housing in the City’ but it has also successfully politicized and fought for an end to forced removals and for access to education and the provision of water, electricity, sanitation, health care and refuse removal as well as bottom up popular democracy. Amongst other victories the Abahlali have democratized the governance of many settlements, stopped evictions in a number of settlements, won access to schools and forced numerous government officials to 'come down to the people'. For more information, visit www.abahlali.org

DEAR MANDELA is scheduled for release in June 2010. The South African government has promised to ‘eradicate the slums’ in time for the Soccer World Cup next year. Across the country, they are evicting families from their shacks, often at gunpoint. DEAR MANDELA follows three of the youngest leaders of the Shack Dwellers Movement - Zama, Mnikelo and Mazwi - from the chaos on the streets to the highest court in the land as they put Nelson Mandela’s promise of ‘a better life for all’ to the test. DEAR MANDELA is a cautionary tale as cities around the world embark on similar slum clearance programs, and serves as an urgent reminder of the right of all human beings to a decent life. For more information, visit http://sleepinggiantfilms.wordpress.com/