Feb 25 2022


7:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Film Screening – Faya Dayi

Ethiopian legend has it that khat, a stimulant leaf, was found by Sufi Imams in search of eternity. Inspired by this myth, Faya Dayi is a spiritual journey into the highlands of Harar immersed in the rituals of khat, a leaf that Sufi Muslims chewed for religious meditations – and Ethiopia’s most lucrative cash crop today. Through the prism of the khat trade, Faya Dayi weaves a tapestry of intimate stories of people caught between violent government repression, khat-induced fantasies and treacherous journeys beyond their borders, and offers a window into the dreams of the youth who long for a better life.

Jessica Beshir is a Mexican-Ethiopian filmmaker, producer and cinematographer based in Brooklyn. She graduated in Film Studies and Literature at UCLA, after which she made several internationally acclaimed short films. He Who Dances on Wood (2016) and Hairat (2017) that premiered at Sundance, was screened at IFFR and IDFA and won several awards at various other festivals. Faya Dayi (2021) is her feature debut.