Teenage Afghan refugee Sonita Alizadeh lives in a Tehran shelter, dreaming of a future as a rap superstar despite Iran’s prohibition against women singing in public, performing for kids at the shelter, and working as a cleaning woman. Her family has a different future in mind for her: her mother announces that they plan to sell Sonita as a bride for $9000 so the family can buy Sonita’s brother a wife. Sonita makes a bold request to director Rokhsareh Ghaem Maghami, reigniting the discussion about how filmmakers should relate to their subjects. Purdue University professor Su’ad Abdul Khabeer, author of Muslim Cool: Race, Religion, and Hip Hop in the United States, introduces the screening.
(Rokhsareh Ghaem Maghami, Iran, 2015, 91 min., DCP)
Su’ad Abdul Khabeer is a scholar-artist-activist who uses anthropology and performance to explore the intersections of race and popular culture. She is the author of the groundbreaking study of Islam, hip hop, and race in the US, Muslim Cool: Race, Religion and Hip Hop in the United States and founder of sapelosquare.com, an online resource on Black Muslims in the US. Su'ad is currently an assistant professor of anthropology and African American studies at Purdue University.
Co-sponsored by the Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality.