The UNIR project starts with a session dedicated to the concept of “domination”
published on 16.10.20
The UNIR project began this Wednesday, October 14th, with the screening of two short films and a later debate in the TBS in Barcelona auditorium around the concept of “Domination”. Although the event took place on campus, most of the audience attended the debate remotely, connecting via the Internet.
It is a project that aims to carry out monthly meetings, to unite and put in common ideas that today are in vogue: digitalization, consumption, circular economy, common good… a series of concepts that regulate our lives without us surely realizing it.
TBS professor Wafa Khlif presented the short films at this first roundtable and moderated the discussion. “Debates are arenas that help us learn the practice of free rational thought,” Khlif said to introduce the project. “When we talk about domination, we are talking about the social and economic sphere at the same time, because companies transform the human into a resource,” she continued.
“When we talk about domination, we are talking about the social and economic sphere at the same time, because companies transform the human into a resource,”Wafa Khlif
The first short film of the afternoon was Leading Lady Parts by Jessica Swale. The short film premiered on the BBC in 2018 and was inspired by the Time’s up movement, the anti-harassment movement founded that very year by Hollywood celebrities in response to the Weinstein scandal and #Metoo. Some of the actresses we see in the film are Emilia Clarke, Lena Headey, Florence Pugh or Felicity Jones. Swale’s objective with the short film was to denounce the impossible demands that actresses suffer every time they appear at a test, highlighting the aesthetic pressure they are subjected to or the racism of the casting directors.
After the short film, Wafa Khlif explained the definition and etymology of the word domination, the “exercise of the condition of owner”, and initiated a debate on the social role of women, explaining that the oldest form of domination is precisely that of men over women.
Those attending gave their points of view on the short film, as well as on the situation of feminism in Spain, participating through the chat or connecting their microphones. They stressed that in the short film it was surprising that the casting directors, those who exercised the male-gaze over the actresses, were precisely two women and a racialized man, which led them to talk about how we internalize the male gaze or the different oppressions, harming ourselves.
The second short film was All that We Share, a short film about labels that invites us to get rid of them or to reorganize them. In the short, different groups of people separated by categories end up discovering that they have things in common and end up all together and mixed up.
Khlif introduced the second debate by asking the audience about the importance of the categories. Are we chained by them as the short film says? The teacher then took the debate into the company’s field, asking who the audience thought the short film was aimed at, and why she wanted to cover everyone without focusing on a specific audience, appealing only to the emotions. Finally, she made a final reflection on how in recent decades neoliberalism has learned to make itself invisible in advertising, to such an extent that we integrate the domination of the company into ourselves without realizing it.