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Saul Landau Film Series: The Sixth Sun: Mayan Uprising in Chiapas (1997)

October 24, 2012 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Saul Landau Film Series: The Sixth Sun: Mayan Uprising in Chiapas (1997)

DVD coverAs a lead up to The Institute’s 50th birthday, IPS will host a film series on the 4th Wednesday of each month featuring eleven of the widely respected film productions of our colleague, Saul. After each screening participants will have the opportunity to discuss the films with distinguished guests.

Saul Landau, is an Emmy-winning, internationally-known scholar, author, commentator, and filmmaker on foreign and domestic policy issues. Landau’s most widely praised achievements are the over forty films he has produced on social, political and historical issues, and worldwide human rights, for which he won the Letelier-Moffitt Human Rights Award, the George Polk Award for Investigative Reporting, and the First Amendment Award, as well as an Emmy for Paul Jacobs and the Nuclear Gang.

The Sixth Sun: Mayan Uprising in Chiapas (1996) – Just before dawn on New Year’s Day 1994, armed Mayan Indians declared war on the government. They immediately seized eight towns in Chiapas and set in motion events that ripped away a facade of prosperity and stability to reveal ‘the other Mexico’. They demanded land, public services and Indian autonomy – the right to communally own and farm land. They called themselves the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN). This documentary features in-depth interviews with people from the EZLN, among them Subcommandante Marcos, with Bishop Samuel Ruiz from San Cristobal de las Casas, who is an outspoken practitioner of liberation theology and human rights activist. And all other sorts of actors in the conflict: peasants on the estates they have occupied, angry ranchers forced from their land, church activists, conservative Catholics, government officials, and the notorious ‘guardias blancas’, the private army of the landowners. The Sixth Sun portrays an epic confrontation pitting impoverished peasants against large landowners and government forces in Mexico’s poorest state, Chiapas. The film raises important questions as to what is to be judged expendable in the rush to global economic integration – whether the destruction of whole peoples and cultures that have survived over centuries is simply to be accepted as the price of ‘progress’. Best Director Award, First American Indian Intercontinental Film Festival, Santa Fe, 1996; Golden Apple Award, 1997: Best Picture, North Carolina Smoky Mountain Film Festival, 1997.

These screenings are free and open to the public but a suggested $5 donation will be appreciated. Popcorn and beverages will be provided. Please note: The location for any particular screening may vary. Please let us know you’re coming by sending an RSVP to

Films in the Series:


October 24, 2012
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
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Netfa Freeman, IPS


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