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Summary of Born Into Brothels

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  • Pages: 2
  • Word count: 338
  • Category: Camera

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Born Into Brothels, written by Zana Briski and her collaborator, Ross Kaufman was a humorous yet serious film about the children of the prostitutes trying to change their future. The film was recorded at the infamous red light district of overcrowded city of Calcutta. While trying to capture pictures of the prostitutes, Zana saw a bigger picture; to give opportunities to the children of the brothels for a better life (entering boarding school),by using money from the selling of their pictures taken around the brothels and Calcutta. With film cameras were equipped to the children, they were asked to take pictures with the camera in various scenes. The group of children consists of 8 children, Avijit, Kochi, Tapasi, Manik, Puja, Shanti, Suchitra and Gour. Zana Briski provided photography class or workshop for the children where she taught the children the basics of photography and particularly on how to use the 35-mm film camera. Furthermore, she also tried her best to make a difference out of their fate by sending the children to the boarding school.

There were so many obstacles faced by her in order to get a suitable boarding school for the children. As time went on, the children gradually improved on their skill and started to show their own talent on taking great pictures. Some of them showed a really promising talent such as Avijit. To generate funds, Zana Briski organized exhibitions of the children’s work. The first exhibition was in NYC had many positive responses. Later, the second exhibition was held in a bookstore in Calcutta. Zana’s hard work paid off eventually when most of the children got themselves a place in a boarding school. But only half of them decided to go, although their parents were reluctantly giving the permission. Avijit, the brightest child among them was chosen for a photography convention in Amsterdam. By the end of this film, several of the children who went for the boarding school returned to the brothels and unfortunately did not continue their studies.

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