Music By Prudence

T he Academy Award Winning Music by Prudence tells a self-empowering story of one young woman’ struggle who, together with her band overcomes seemingly insurmountable odds, and in her own voice conveys to the world that ‘disability does not mean inability.”

Prudence lives in Zimbabwe, and for a long time almost no one knew about that hauntingly beautiful voice.  No one knew the strong, resilient woman that owned it.  Born with a debilitating condition called arthrogryposis, they were unable to overlook her body.

I’ve never been to Zimbabwe; I was in Mali and it felt like this film. While there, amid all the chaos and poverty, I encountered wonderfully optimistic and loving people. The same is true of those featured in Music by Prudence. If ever there were a place where where you’d think people might feel sorry for themselves and give up, it’d be in a school for the disabled in one of the poorest nations on earth. Not a chance. The humor and hope in this film overcomes any sense of “whoa is me.” This story, not only of Prudence, but her band mates at the King George School, should inspire anybody who moans about their ongoing first world problems.

We came across Prudence in Senior Current Issues because Sam Fox and Jessica Carrier have chosen Zimbabwe as a country of study in the class.  In Economics we’ve talked at length about the differences between life in the first and third world.  Music by Prudence tells not only the uplifting story of girl born with a punishing disability, and her efforts to overcome that disability, it also provides an insight to life in a place like Zimbabwe.  Take a look around Prudence and see just how life is like for even non-disabled Zimbabweans.

If nothing else, this movie should encourage you to roll up your sleeves, push past your first world problems, and get moving.  It’s time to change the world people.  It shouldn’t be so difficult; you have both of your arms and legs.

The Assignment for Sixth Period Government – must be posted on Google Docs by 11:59 PM on Sunday March 18.

While you may go wherever you want to go with this,   you have a few requirements…compare the first world and the third.  Also, bring your life into the mix as well as Prudence’s life.  You do not have to support my way of thinking to get a good grade.  You know how I feel about first world problems…the key here is how well you support the position that you’ve chosen, not the position itself, and that you cover the issues I’ve asked you to touch upon. That being said, it would be really cool if you could stay away from first vs third world generalizations and get specific to particular stories in the move.

Sixth Hour Government class – please ignore the following…

A few added extras for Senior Current Issues (required) and for Economics students who would like a little extra credit. 

In addition to the 33 minute movie (2010 Academy Award Winning Best Documentary Short) the video provides ten special features – vignettes (5:00 to 12:00) of separate topics.

  • Concert by Liyana
  • Hair & Witch Doctor (you must do both)
  • Pru’s House
  • Healers
  • Morning Rituals
  • Going Nowhere
  • Dates and Girls
  • iThemba
  • KG8

For SCI students – you must pick one of the ten vignettes (your choice) get the dvd from Mr. Wood and watch it on your own or with a friend in class.  Then go to Google docs and post your thoughts / summary / anything really about the vignette (150 words) – this will be a part of your 50 point grade.  300 on the general question.  150 on the vignette.  Label it as Part II – with the title of the short.

For Economics students you may pick up an extra 10 points possible if you choose to watch and google docs one of these shorts.  Come in after school or during lunch (just bring lunch down – tell me first) and watch it.  Then go and post.  I will add the points to your original assignment.  All of it is due by Friday at 11:59 PM.

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