Important Rwandan tragedy depicted in film/ Film Something in April depicts important tragedy

Sasha Anand, Assistant Entertainment Editor

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Twenty five years ago this April, the Hutu people killed as many as 800,000 of the Tutsi minority in Africa during the horrific Rwandan Genocide.

 

To honor the victims of the 1994 genocide, CSUSM’s History and Global Studies departments, along with the Global Commitment Committee, screened the film Sometimes In April starring Idris Elba.

 

Professors Elizabeth Matthews, Alyssa Sepinwall and Meshack Simati held a discussion after the film so they could hear people’s reactions to what they saw. Most people were shocked and saddened by the tragedy depicted in the film and many expressed anger and sadness.

 

Professor Simati in particular became emotional about the film and its subject matter. “I went to college with kids who went through [the Rwandan Genocide] and shared that experience with me and I thought that was behind me, but I’ve also lived through a different kind of violence. In Kenya in 2007 a lot of people died because they were part of a different ethnic group. People come to your house and cut you to pieces with machetes,” Simati said.

 

One student asked what the difference between the Hutu and the Tutsi was. Simati responded by saying “It is tribal, but by way of appearances you would not be able to tell who is a Hutu and who is a Tutsi. It is based on the fact that there are different languages and cultures in each area.”

 

The group held a moment of silence to honor this tragedy and the impact it had on those who experienced it.

 

Simati explained that Africa is still dealing with ethnic conflicts and violence.

 

Professor Matthews said that while the film accurately portrayed the event, “it is way worse than it looks.” The film includes real footage of the United States government neglecting to acknowledge the event as a genocide.

 

Matthews said that when she watched the news during the time of this event, there was “footage on the Newark of dead bodies clogging up the rivers in Kigali.”

 

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