(Inter)National Commodities | Chicago Reader

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The talking-head shots of Cambodian survivors of sexual slavery in Sonya Shah's Something Between Her Hands (2003) demonstrate that sometimes the best choice a filmmaker can make is to dispense with artifice entirely. Haltingly but without self-pity, the women recount how they were duped, sold, drugged, and forced to service 30 clients and more a day. In Khmer with subtitles. Leena Manimekalai's harrowing Parai (2003), about India's Dalits (untouchables), analyzes sexual abuse as a weapon of class oppression. Many untouchables live in near slavery, the men beaten if caught studying, the women preyed upon by upper caste men—who compel Dalit children to relay sexual demands to their mothers. In Tamil with subtitles. 85 min.

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