Autodéfense

HD video
Color
Arabic with French subtitles
3 minutes
2013

As in Mahmoud Darwish’s poem, culture and identity are not only ways to read and discern reality but also a tool to protect oneself in the face of it. Self-protection (“autode?fense”) is sometime a way to re- sist oppression. The city of Marseille where the video is recorded is now the scene of a massive influx of institutional culture. The video follows a figure through this lands- cape of cultural modernity built on the ruins of what was before, where curious tourists wander stunned by the site’s beauty. Au- tode?fense is an invitation to reflect on the meaning and impact produced by the word culture. Under the blue veil, this women is not just a symbol of “inexistent tradition” (as Edward Said would write), she is neither archaic nor modern; she is just contempo- rary. Protected by this blue veil she exists; walking and knowing herself, she is resis- ting.