Scheherazade’s Diary, Dir. Zeina Daccache, 2013, Lebanon, 80 min, Arabic with English subtitles
This engaging documentary follows women inmates through a ten-month drama therapy and theatre project established in 2012 by director Zeina Daccache at the Baabda Prison in Lebanon. Through their unprecedented theatre initiative entitled Scheherazade in Baabda, these “murderers of husbands, adulterers and drug felons” – as they are deemed – reveal their stories of domestic violence, childhood trauma, failed marriages, forlorn romances and being deprived of motherhood. Drawing on the folk tales of One Thousand and One Nights, the women of Baabda Prison use ancient Arab traditions of storytelling to share their personal stories and in doing so, hold up a mirror to Lebanese society and all societies that repress women.