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Spring 2024
Human Rights
Film Series

and Elder-in-Residence Jean Whitehorse (Navajo Nation)

“Amá” April 10th, 2024
Free and open to the public

Photos courtesy of Madan Sara and Amá

The WVU Native American Studies Program hosted two Human Rights film screenings and discussions

“Amá” (April 10), the poignant story of 

involuntary sterilization of thousands of Native American women, 

and “Madan Sara” (March 27), the rich story of women entrepreneurs

who are the foundation of Haiti's markets.


April 10th, 7:00-9:00pm

AMÁ” is the Navajo word for Mother.

This film screening & discussion with Elder-in-Residence Jean Whitehorse (Navajo Nation), was moderated by Bonnie Brown.

Jean Whitehorse sits on a futon with brightly patterned blanket. She wears all black and has grey hair styled in two braids.

About the Film

“Amá”, by filmmaker Lorna Tucker, addresses the involuntary sterilization of thousands of Native American women at U.S. government-run hospitals and clinics and elsewhere, a practice that continued into the 1970s and included other women of color. Ms. Whitehorse is one of the Native women who experienced sterilization without consent and is a key figure in this moving documentary film. Jean Whitehorse will be on campus the second week in April, having classroom and faculty dialogues and engaging with Health Sciences graduate students. This is a rare opportunity for community members to learn directly from a Navajo Nation elder. The daughter of a Navajo code talker, Ms. Whitehorse attended government boarding schools, was part of the U.S. government's Indian Urban Relocation program, was active in the Civil Rights/Native Rights movement, incl. the Alcatraz Island occupation, and worked for New Mexico’s State Tribal Library Program for over 26 years before retiring.

“Madan Sara”

(Held on March 27, 2024)

The film screening & discussion included virtual guest, co-executive producer Lulaine Childs, and was moderated by Gwen Bergner Professor of English, Harriet E. Lyon Professor of Women’s & Gender Studies. Attend on campus or virtually, via Zoom. 


Haitian market woman standing in market area

About the Film

This film is about market women in Haiti, collectively called “Madan Sara”, who serve a vital role in the country’s economy by tirelessly transporting food, clothing, and other basic necessities from farmers and producers for sale at the open markets. Without these entrepreneurs, Haiti's economy would come to a standstill, and yet the “Madan Sara” occupies a precarious financial position and risks bodily harm due to the country's political instability.  Lulaine Childs is co-owner of New York City-based Street Team Productions, creating content for different platforms, including the Behind the Boards Podcast. Street Team distributes the short film “N'AP Boule” by Haitian filmmaker Alexandrine Benjamin and is currently working on a documentary on the 1974 Haiti World Cup team.

The Film Series is made possible by the WVU Community Human Rights Film Festival fund (established by Morgantown residents Carol Howe Hamblen and Don Spencer), and is overseen by WVU’s Native American Studies Program.

Additional support is provided by partners throughout the University: Department of History, Department of English, Department of Political Science, Department of World Languages, Literatures, & Linguistics, the Center for Women’s & Gender Studies, the Reed College of Media, the WVU Humanities Center, the WVU Health Sciences Center Graduate Women Advocating Science organization, the Health Science Center Graduate Student Organization, and a community partner: the Monongalia Friends Meeting (Quakers).