MIWENE follows Anita Enomenga, a Waorani woman living deep in the Amazon jungle, during a crucial period of change for her family, culture, and environment. Told from Anita's point of view, the film captures her transition from a quiet teenager into a confident young mother, driven to preserve her unique cultural identity. At sixteen, she lives with her parents and grandparents in the remote community of Kewediono. Her 90-year-old grandmother, Weba, is one of the last living Waorani elders old enough to have lived in complete isolation before first contact by missionaries. Anita attends the unique new high school in Kewediono, where they are challenging the old education system imposed on their territory, which has separated students from their culture and devalued their heritage. The students are consulting their elders and building a comprehensive guidebook to Waorani culture and scientific understanding of their rainforest--a textbook rife with ancestral knowledge that risks being lost completely with the passage of each Waorani elder. Shot over the course of ten years with intimate access to Anita’s family and community, the film captures what the subtle yet relentless creep of assimilation looks like at a personal level, reframing the simple narrative of ethnocide, from the destruction of a culture, to the complex stories of the individuals experiencing it first-hand. It is a story about reclaiming cultural identity and agency within a dramatically shifting world.
Magic Forest Kevin by MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Spirit of the Girl Kevin by MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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