Price: $310.00

    Code: 1739

    Directed by Mary Ellen Davis
    1996, 54 minutes
    Spanish and Q'eqchi dialog with English subtitles
    Purchase: $310 | Classroom Rental: $125

    Reveals the plight of landless peasants in Guatemala, where property ownership is restricted to a small percentage of the nation's most wealthy citizens. Most peasants, including the indigenous Indian peoples, own no land and continually seek a small patch of their own to cultivate for subsistence farming. This peasant labor force is brutally exploited by agricultural developers and when the peasants demand wages, decent working conditions, or a few acres of land for themselves, they are accused of being communist guerrillas. During the last few decades, the Guatemalan army has massacred thousands of peasants, forcing thousands of others to become refugees. In one such massacre, in 1982, the army killed eight hundred mestizo peasants--including men, women and children--who had attempted to found a village, a story movingly recounted here by survivors. Another Indian community is shown defending its ancestral rights--despite arrests, threats and destruction of their harvest--on the property of an agricultural exporter. Despite these terrible injustices and repeated human rights violations, Guatemala's dispossessed peoples are shown continuing to celebrate life through their music, dance, and religious ceremonies. Sacred Earth is thus a story of faith as well as courage, of peace as well as conflict.

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