Director: David Teague
Year/Length: 2009 / 47 min
Co-presenter: London International Documentary Film Festival
New York Festival Premiere
Filmmaker in person
Khalil Gibran International Academy, the first Arabic-language public school in the U.S., opened in Brooklyn in 2007. Almost immediately, “Stop the Madrassa” formed out of fear that the school would teach radical Islam or even produce terrorists. As critics and the mainstream media stoked the flames in post-9/11 America, the controversy forced the school’s Arab-American Muslim principal from her job. Weaving together interviews and cinema verité footage, the film is supplemented by graphic-novel style illustrations of closed-door proceedings. Built on the principal’s struggle to get her job back, Intifada NYC clarifies the ensuing public debate about tolerance and freedom of speech.