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May 8, 2006

New documentary about Tijuana factory workers screens May 11

A new documentary about Tijuana's factory workers and their struggle for social change will screen Thursday, May 11, at 7:30 p.m. in Earth & Marine Building Room B206.

Photo of film poster

Maquilapolis looks at globalization through the eyes of workers.

Maquilapolis is a piercing look at globalization through the eyes of
workers who confront "labor violations, environmental devastation and urban chaos." The film's title comes from the word maquila, short for maquiladora, for the factories in Mexico that process or assemble components for export. Typically foreign-owned and concentrated on the U.S.-Mexico border, the facilities tap low-wage Mexican labor to produce goods for export back to the United States.

Codirector Vicky Funari and two organizers featured in the film will attend the "sneak preview" and field questions after the screening, which is being presented by the Latin American and Latino Studies and Community Studies Departments.

The film was directed by Funari and Sergio de la Torre in collaboration with Grupo Factor X, the Chilpancingo Collective for Environmental Justice, and women's rights activists. The women workers in the film were involved in every stage of production, from scripting to shooting to outreach. The film documents their efforts to "reach beyond the daily struggle of survival to organize for social change."

Maquilapolis is a unique film that "breaks with the traditional documentary practice of dropping into a location, shooting and leaving with the 'goods,' which would only repeat the pattern of the maquiladora itself," said the directors. "We seek to merge artmaking with community development and to ensure that the film's voice will be truly that of its subjects."

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