When watching news about famines and starving people in foreign countries, we often feel removed from the problem, even as we express pity and regret. Beadie Finzi’s The Hunger Season shatters our illusions of distance, however, revealing the complex interconnections between global economic systems, the hunger for new biofuel sources of energy, global climate change, political unrest, and resulting devastation of drought and famine for millions of people around the world. Tracing the journey of food aid from the fields of Wisconsin farmers to USAID and finally to Swaziland, where Justice, a village leader, struggles to feed his neighbors, Finzi brings home our role in the hunger crises and also our ability to help avert such problems.
A moving experience, The Hunger Season had its sneak peek world premiere at a Tales from Planet Earth event in October 2008 and came back for the 2009 festival by popular demand. The screening event held a year ago was co-hosted by First United Methodist Church of Madison, the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, the Center for Culture, History and Environment (CHE) and Working Films. This event built the impetus for the event on Sunday – which is becoming a new national engagement project built around the film called “Meal & a Movie in a Box.”
In addition to the Meal & a Movie, two students in the Community Engagement through Film class, Sarah Obernauer or Tia Nowack, made a tie between Swaziland to Madison with Share the Shares which brought CSA and local food production into the mix.
Watch the video above to hear more about this innovative program.