Carolina will host the premiere of a faculty member’s documentary film about an Argentinian human rights organization of grandmothers committed to finding their lost grandchildren, who they believe were stolen by their country’s government some 30 years ago.
C.A. Tuggle, a professor in UNC’s School of Journalism and Mass Communication, will premiere his film “Las Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo and the Search for Identity” Jan. 17, at 7 p.m. in the Carroll Hall auditorium.
The screening is free and open to the public.
At least 10,000 — and some estimate as many as 30,000 — dissidents of the military dictatorship were kidnapped, tortured and killed during Argentina’s Dirty War from 1976-1983. Those kidnapped became known as Los Desaparecidos or “the disappeared.” Some of the women were pregnant or new mothers when captured, and infants ended up in homes of people sympathetic to the regime. The babies’ names, birth dates and other identifiers were changed.
“This isn’t something that happened years ago and has no relevance now,” Tuggle said. “The grandmothers continue to find missing grandchildren. This is an on-going injustice, and it’s ordinary women who are fighting the battle and serving as an example to all of us that we can make a difference.”
Las Abuelas has located more than 100 missing grandchildren, many who had no knowledge of their true identities.
Tuggle’s daughters Brynne Tuggle Miller and Bethany Tuggle Parker, both graduates of the school, served as coordinating producer and writer/editor, respectively, for the documentary.
“Working on this documentary has been a labor of love,” said Miller. “But it’s also been such a rewarding experience to work on telling a story that my family is so passionate about and, in the process, complete a work that we are so proud of.”
Dylan Field, a TV director and producer in the school, served as the film’s audio editor and videographer.
Screenings at universities throughout the U.S. will follow the premiere.