Film Image
Audre Lorde - The Berlin Years 1984 to 1992
79 minutes
English subtitles

Audre Lorde - The Berlin Years 1984 to 1992

2012 marks the 20th anniversary of Audre Lorde’s passing, the acclaimed Black lesbian feminist poet and activist. Throughout the 70s and 80s, Lorde’s incisive writings and speeches defined and inspired the women of color, feminist and LGBT social justice movements in the United States.

AUDRE LORDE - THE BERLIN YEARS 1984 TO 1992 explores a little-known chapter of the writer’s prolific life, a period in which she helped ignite the Afro-German Movement and made lasting contributions to the German political and cultural scene before and after the fall of the Berlin Wall and the German reunification.

Lorde mentored and encouraged Black German women to write and publish as a way of asserting their identities, rights and culture in a society that isolated and silenced them, while challenging white German women to acknowledge their white privilege. As Lorde wrote in her book Our Dead Behind Us: Poems, “It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.”

Special features include footage of Audre Lorde in Berlin, Audre reading her poems, Audre on her work, deleted scenes, trailer, interview with filmmaker Dagmar Schultz and English, Spanish, German and French subtitles.

AUDRE LORDE - THE BERLIN YEARS 1984 TO 1992, winner of the Audience Award for Best Documentary at the Barcelona G&L Film Festival, contains previously unreleased audiovisual material from director Dagmar Schultz’s personal archive, showing Lorde on and off stage. With testimony from Lorde's colleagues, students and friends, this film documents Lorde's lasting legacy in Germany.
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"I believe that many different social movements can learn from one another. The documentary AUDRE LORDE - THE BERLIN YEARS 1984 TO 1992 by Dagmar Schultz shows this with great urgency. The film shows the various movements, the fight for black liberation, the emancipation of women and also the lesbian branch of feminism. The question of how the different groups have positioned themselves is made very clear here." - Wieland Speckm, Berlin International Film Festival
"Fellow writer and admirer, Dagmar Schultz, directed and produced AUDRE LORDE - THE BERLIN YEAR 1984 TO 1992. These years are somewhat lost in the public's memory of Lorde, but the impact of that period on her legacy and the good it did for her health, are rememebered in this documentary." - Sawyer J Lahr, Go Over The Rainbow
"Lorde’s own voice shines through this inspiring film, filling us with her poetry and conviction." - Fringe! Film Festival
"Twenty years after her passing, never-before-seen archives reveal the private life and passions of the award-winning, influential woman who ignited a worldwide movement. Exploring her brilliant writings and her inspiration to feminist lesbians around the world, Lorde’s profound legacy is honored in this engrossing film." - Outfest, Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Film Festival
"A revealing look at poet and activist Audre Lorde during her many travels to West Berlin to lecutre and visit friends. One gets a rare glimpse of this head-strong but self-effacing woman. For any fan of Audre Lorde, this film is essential viewing; for people who may not be familiar with her and her work, the film makes a perfect introduction." - Raymond Murray, Philadelphia Q Fest
"Feminist giant Audre Lorde wanted an ‘irresistible revolution‘, and as this lively documentary testifies, as a revolutionary, Lorde herself is irresistible.“ - Trista S. Kendall, publisher and film critic, 36 Frameline LGBT
“This film is a gift to history, for scholars, for revolutionaries, for women, especially lesbians, for people of color and is clearly a work of love.” - Kitty Cone, Berkeley, California
“With this film, through this film, Audre Lorde enters the room...“ - Prof. Sara Ahmed, Goldsmiths University of London, UK
"Written, directed and produced by German feminist publisher and professor Dagmar Schultz, the documentary provides an intimate portrait of the poet, professor, activist and cultural organizer who died of cancer in 1992 at age 58. Through never-released video, photographs and (sometimes hilarious) interviews with Lorde, her partner, Gloria Joseph, and a tight-knit group of Afro-German activists and writers, The Berlin Years tells the story of Lorde the genius facilitator." - Akiba Solomon, Colorlines
"The heart of the film is Lorde’s deep enthusiasm and commitment to fostering international solidarity, dialogue and exchange between all women, in particular women of color, women of the African Diaspora and queer women." - Elaine Castillo, Big Other Blog
"Audre felt familiar, like your neighbour full of extraordinary pearls of wisdom that your mum or aunt didn’t give you, she was challenging and warm all at once , all the time pointing the finger back at those who asked questions of her. It was so inspiring watching her weaving safe spaces of expression and questioning for many who never thought about questioning before." - Curvedmarginz2012
"The film works through the following question: what can we learn from our connected differences? It thus implores spectators to complicate difference and challenge the ways in which neoliberal multiculturalism has flattened, and often sought to tame, Lorde’s radical teachings." - Naimah Petigny, Films for the Feminist Classroom
"Poignant documentary... AUDRE LORDE - THE BERLIN YEARS captures how Lorde transceded borders through her literary works and and public engagements by emphasizing mutual understanding and the negotation of differences. A powerful tribute... the movie invites us to feel, listen, see, dance, and remember the legacy of Audre Lorde... as an indomintable spirit who appealed to and will continue to appeal to many individuals across the globe." - Tiffany N. Florvil, Black Camera Journal

• Festival Favorite Award, Palm Springs Gay & Lesbian Film Festival
• Best Documentary Award, Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film Festival & Lecture Series
• Best Documentary, Reelout Queer Film + Video Festival
• Audience Award for Best Documentary, Barcelona G&L Film Festival
• World Premiere, Berlin International Film Festival, 2012
• New York Premiere, The Brecht Forum, 2012
• San Francisco Premiere, Frameline Film Festival, 2012
• Los Angeles Premiere, Outfest, Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, 2012
• Philadelphia Q Fest, 2012
• Torino GLBT Film Festival, 2012
• FRINGE! Film Festival, London, 2012
• West Coast Premiere, Langston Hughes African American Film Festival, 2012
• BlackStar Film Festival, Philadelphia, 2012
• Michigan Womyn's Music Festival, 2012
• Congrès de Recherche Féministe Francophone, 2012
• Festival de Films de Femmes de Bruxelles Elles Tournent, 2012
• Audre Lorde Film and Cultural Festival, Spring and Fall 2012
• Berlin & Beyond Showcase, San Francisco, 2012
• Brüsseler Frauenfilmfestival, 2012
• Barcelona International G&L Film Festival, 2012
• Some Prefer Cake LGBT Festival, Bologna, 2012
• Out on Film, 2012
• Black International Cinema, Berlin, 2012
• Subversive Film Festival, Croatia, 2012
• Boston LGBT Film Festival, 2012
• Queer Film Festival, Lisboa, 2012
• International Queer Film Festival, Hamburg, 2012
• Florence Queer Film Festival, 2012
• Cheries Cheris FF LGBT, Paris, 2012
• PERLEN Queer Film Festival, Hannover Kustlerhaus , 2012
• Africa in the Picture FF, Amsterdam, 2012
• Free Zone Human Rights, Belgrade, 2012
• London Feminist Film Festival, 2012
• Siren Nation Arts Film Festival, Portland, 2012
• Image+Nation 25 Festival, Montreal, 2012
• Queering Roma, 2012
• Bimovie 18 Frauenfilmfest, Munchen, 2012
• Art for Action- Lesbian Activist Festival, Serbia, 2012
• Munster-Queerstreifen (Lesbisch Schwule Filmtage Munster), 2012
• Trenton International Film Festival, 2012
• Pink Life Juir Festival, Ankara, 2013
• Rainbow Reels Queer Festival, Ontario, 2013
• Miami Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, 2013
• Outfest Fusion LGBT People of Color Film Festiva, Los Angeles, 2013
• Immaginaria Film Festival, Milano, 2013
• Identities, Vienna, 2013
• Leeds Queer Festival, 2013
• Redmond Film Screening, Amsterdam, 2013
• Tel Aviv International LGBT Film Festival, 2013
• Palm Springs LGBT Film Festival, 2013
• Reel Sisters of the Diaspora Film Festival, NYC, 2013
• Zefestival, France, 2013
• 2013 International Black Women's Film Festival, San Francisco, 2013
• Uruguay International Film Festival on Sexual and Gender Diversity, 2013

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