User:Luisa Moura/reading/film/enjoy poverty
- FIELD WORKERS: men cleaning up a field; one of them complaining. too much work, making very little money. six days to make one dollar.
- HUMANITARIAN AID: village / settlement. tents and humanitarian aid. white people with very kind look handing in packages with clothes and food and taking pictures at the same time; the whole scene is surrounded by soldiers with guns;
- FISHERMEN: very little fish. Renzo: "Its that all you got?" "maybe you should do something else than fishing"
- CAMP: photographers taking photos of man inside a hut, right on his face. Armed men around the tents. refugees tents?
- WALKING: Scene with Renzo Martens walking with a few natives. They are carrying his stuff. He comments that we cannot give them anything they don't have already; we can only train them, empower them. Open them up to the world as it is now: new products, new values and other markets.
- FOREIGN AFFAIRS MEETING: crowd, political promenade. Lots of security and international press / photographers. Meeting foreign affairs taking place, including representative from the world bank (Which meeting exactly?) 1,8 billion dollars in donations. How much is the percentual value of this amount in the total 'revenue' of Congo, asks Martens. If its high, in how far is not poverty an important natural resource of Congo, if not the most important? The question is considered to be offensive "poverty is not a natural resource" the fact that it brings more money than copper and diamonds together is normal in a pos-conflict situation;
- PHOTOGRAPHY EXHIBITION: intense photos of workers, barely dressed, tired, emotional, clearly suffering. "these photo's make me think on the way our ancestors lived, the countryside" "They still live like that (...) makes me happy" "yes they suffer. but its like that. people in our country suffer"
- FIELD WORKERS AGAIN: didn't go much further. three days to finish a one's day quota. Interview with another worker: he tells who is in charge (owner: Blattner) and that the plantation is part of a group gathering 24 companies. This property produces palm oil and coffee and exports to Europe. They have 924 hired workers and 5000 temporary ones.
- WORKER'S HOME: he and his family eat mainly mandioca leaves. Little girl eating a mouse. Interview with a guy that has data on malnourished children, many of them, particularly from a couple of plantations. The data was collected with the help of Doctors Without Borders. Worker show his terminated contract based apparently on the lack of need for labour. He still works though, as much as before, but now without contract. His family lives miserably. His younger kid never sleeps, she has swollen eyes, her anus is infected and her feet full of blisters.
- INTERVIEW (CAR-DOCTOR): children from the plantation workers are mostly malnourished, its a fact. 4 dollars a month to feed a family with several children.
- INTERVIEW OWNER: plans for the plantation, remarks on maintenance and infrastructure. Showing the photos that he bought at the exhibition. Renzo asks him if he is aware that the children of the workers are starving to death. He comments that the data is only showing 16 deaths when there are actually maybe 8000 children in the plantations; if its about lack of food, how come only 16 starv to death?... He believes they died out of lack of care from their parents.
- HOSPITAL: woman comes with little girl; she is starving. The girls barely reacts. The mother doesn't have enough resources to save her.
- DOCTORS WITHOUT BORDERS TAKING OFF: why? interview. Local civil servant cannot explain why they left. Renzo remarks, looking at the map with their destinaton, that their are simply heading to where the resources are. (WALK AND 'SOUNDTRACK')
- THE LETTERING: ENJOY POVERTY. In a village. Translator explaing what this is about to the locals. It doesn't look they are getting it "let's enjoy poverty"
- UNITED NATIONS AND PROTECTION OF COMPANIES: guys putting bags with samples together. stones. Airplanes come to pick it up. Company looking for gold: "Anglo Gold Ashanti". Interviewing the guy that comes in the airplane. They also bring medicine for the locals. What, exactly, is unclear. "do you control everything, also samples?" he asks to a soldier "yes". He makes the remark "one thinks you should be rich with so much gold around" they reply that actually gold is lying underneath and that they don't have the means to reach it themselves. Renzo asks a white guy about the role of the United Nations troops in the control of the local militias (also intereste in the gold), he says the UN is fundamental in the process of keeping the way clear for the company.
WALK WITH SOLDIERS - corpses somewhere. Photographers already on site. It shocking to see how they keep on doing their job despite the violence of the scene. Keep on walking, now with other local group, dressed civilian. Are these the guys from the milita? They speak about the villagers that must look after them, pay for the war with what they have, pay for the protection. "Its like we are a well, americans, chinese, europeans, they all come here and take stuff back home (...) our gold should be used to build here before going any place else"
PHOTOGRAPHERS - "Bolingo - Paris Style Photography Studio". Interviewing international photographers on how much they are paid per photo. Commenting on the fact that only coverage of disaster and death is welcome in the contemporary market. The photographers sort of agree. Who is the owner of the photos? "Do people on the photos own anything?" "no, its my photo" "its me who make out of a certain situation a photo"
REFUGEE CAMP - tents, many unicef tents. People crying. Interviewing a woman from the UNHCR on the state of the refugees "very bad, very hard" "why have all the protection plastic sheets a logo?" she replies: "visibility" TALK ON THE PHONE - about 80% of the money given to humanitarian help returns in a way or other to the country of origin.
LECTURE ON: "to whom belongs poverty?" If it can be sold... its important to know who is in charge. Who is the boss.
PHOTO STUDIO: speaking with the photographers of marriages and parties. He explains that foreign photographers come for misery, war and death. Why is that? They don't understand... "they know what they need in America..." Renzo lectures them on what is profitable or not to photograph. they make one dollar a month photographing parties. With war photos (raped women, corpses, malnourished children) they could make 1000 dollars. One of the photographers remarks "we don't know were to sell those photos anyway. Can you hel us?" Practical workshops. Set up scenes, put a logo on the side, maybe. He explains ownership. Go for the woman with the child. Ask the story: title "widow of war with baby" Peole start asking them money. after, looking for the starving children. Undress the kids for the photos.
LIGHT INSTALLATION: "ENJOY please POVERTY" "Help Africa to take charge on heir own resources" people sing and dance in front of the sign. A guy switches the installation manually on and off.
POS-PARTY - community meeting with some journalists that he invites by phone call. They photograph the installation with interesse and make him questions.
PHOTOGRAPHERS - local photographers wish to have a journalist pass like Renzo has. They go for an authorization. He explains the concept and asks for equal rights for local photographers as those given to international ones. The guy (who? who has authority to give press passes?) refuses to see their case. He feels it as offensive. Intrenational journalists are not there to primarily make money but to "inform" He claims the photos are not good. Not professional. The young photographers look deeply disappointed and leave saying no word.
VILLAGE - talking to the locals. "If happines would come out of wealth you would always be unhappy. You will be poor whole your life. The only thing you can actually do is learning how to enjoy your poverty" A man says to Renzo that he has faith he will manage to bring a message out that can help them. Renzo replies saying that there is actually nothing prepared in that sense. "I came to tell you you better enjoy poverty, rather than fight it and be unhappy" a small group starts nodding with sudden faith in their poverty as source of happiness. They clap. the young man that first talked leave with a helpless look.
HOSPITAL - the little girl that was starving finally died. Her mother screams and cries. Other women help and take the child away.
BOAT - navigating with the light installation. a couple of canoos and three men rowing. Renzo gets to his e-mail. The United Nations is asked to revoke his license of journalist. By whom? Complains about his offensive approach.
WORKER PLANTATION - Renzo tells him that his situation won't probably ever change. The man replies that every working man deserves a salary. Renzo confronts him with his lack of property and long time of work. "If you haven't got anything in ten years is very unlikely you will ever get it in the future" Renzo brings food along and feeds the family. They are super happy. Kids smiling. "God exists" the worker said. " I never thought I would ever eat so well"