World Trust Films

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92 min DVD & downloadable Conversation Guide

Shakti Butler

The Way Home:
Women Talk About Race in America


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The Way Home:
Women Talk About Race in America

Over the course of eight months, sixty-four women representing a cross-section of cultures (Indigenous, African-American, Arab/Middle Eastern, Asian, European-American, Jewish, Latina, and Multiracial) came together to share their experience of racism in America. With uncommon courage, the women speak their hearts and minds about resistance, love, assimilation, standards of beauty, power, school experiences, and more. Their candid conversations offer rare access into multi- dimensional worlds invisible to outsiders. The abundance of photographs, dance, and music provides a sensual richness to this provocative piece. The Way Home is rich with stories and experiences that will provoke conversation, and is designed to be viewed and then discussed using the download-able Conversation Guide above.

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Frequently Asked Questions about The Way Home

Why does this documentary only include women?
In our work facilitating dialogues using various films that address culture and race, one of the most commonly asked questions was, “Where are the women’s voices?” In spite of the overall success of using these works, it was obvious to many that the voices of women need to be heard. The Way Home is a celebration of the power that women’s perspectives, voices, and ways of knowing bring to the dialogue.

Why are there separate ethnic councils of women within the film?
We often express ourselves differently when we are among people who we consider to be most like us. The councils provide a safe forum for women to open themselves up authentically while giving us an opportunity to hear conversations we generally are not privy to in interethnic circles. The council process opens a window into how we are both similar and different and how we might begin to respect the complexity of a diverse society.

What is the value of story?
Historically, stories have been used to teach and to heal across communities and nations. An individual story has been known to inspire a movement. A collective story has been known to liberate a people. We honor the power of storytelling to reveal our humanity, transmit wisdom, and create change.

How did the women come together?
An interracial council representing each of the eight councils met for one year. These women then formed and became the co-facilitators of the eight separate councils. The only guidelines were that each group should be diverse in terms of age, class, education, sexual identity, etc. Each ethnic council convened four to six times before being videotaped.

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Who Should Use This Film

What People are Saying

  • The Way Home was an essential element of ethnic studies curricula while I was an undergrad student. It illuminated issues of race and power in the United States in a powerful and unique way. The film was part of what influenced my decision, as a young person, to spend my career working to advance social and racial justice – which I have now been doing for the past 15 years.
    - Vanessa Daniel Program Advisor, The Tides Foundation
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  • The Way Home is a fountain of healing truths… living proof that there are no important issues facing humanity that we can afford to tackle without the centrality of women’s leadership.
    - Victor Lewis National Diversity Trainer, Cast of The Color of Fear, Co-chair of the National Organization for Men Against Sexism
  • Breathtakingly frank, yet loving, conversations
    - San Francisco Weekly
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