Guest Author - Andria Bobo
It’s a Girl is a documentary that addresses the issue of gendercide. Gendercide is the mass extermination of a gender group; in this case, girls. In the documentary, they mention abortions, babies killed after birth, and babies who are abandoned. Girls who survive are often neglected and abused.
This documentary focuses on India and China, where the issue of gendercide seems to be most prevalent. It includes lots of factual information and even interviews of women who have, by their own choice or coercion, have been compelled to kill their babies. It’s a Girl does a great job exploring cultural reasons as to why boy children are preferred over girls (boys are thought to bring strength, blessing, wealth; daughters are considered drains on family resources--in the case of India, their parents have to pay an expensive dowry to the future husband).
Something I really liked about It’s a Girl was how it uses different methods to teach about global gendercide: stories and interviews of real women, facts presented by the documentary makers, and facts presented by scholars/intellectuals. It created a nice balance of information for the viewer as it didn’t focus too much for too long in any one “teaching method.” The most mesmerizing to me personally were the stories told by the women. The stories were very sad and disturbing. To see the range of reactions to their trials was particularly interesting to me. Some women were absolutely heartbroken about the experiences they had faced. Others seemed very stoic about it. I wondered if the stoic women didn’t show much emotion because they couldn’t afford to show emotion. To show emotion would be draining, would take away needed energy from facing the realities of daily life.
I will admit to you that I had a very emotional response to the documentary. I was in tears from the very beginning and I had to pause the documentary frequently to take little breaks, because the material was so intense to listen to.
I have one criticism about this documentary. It says “take a stand against global gendercide today” at the end of the movie before the credits roll but it doesn’t list any ways of how to do that. After such an intense documentary, I’m sure lots of people would be very interested in knowing how to help fight against global gendercide in a practical way.
This is a documentary I overall enjoyed and would recommend, but not to everyone. If you feel you can handle watching an hour-long documentary about the topic about gendercide, then I think you’ll find this a very informative film. But if you are very sensitive and feel that a topic like this would be too much for you, then I would not recommend that you watch it. There is disturbing information and there are disturbing stories that might upset you and you might regret watching it.
Note: I watched this film using Netflix, a service I pay for using my own money.
Buy It’s a Girl on Amazon.com.