Back to All Events

The Panguna Syndrome

  • ACMI Federation Square, Flinders Street Melbourne Australia (map)

Dir. Olivier Pollet & Alexandre Berman | France | 2017 | 52 mins

On the island of Bougainville, an autonomous region of Papua New Guinea, a revolution rages. The Bougainville Crisis – a civil war waged by colonial powers to crush the Indigenous resistance and protect interests in the giant mine of Panguna – may be just the tip of the iceberg. From 1998-2001, 20,000 lives were lost. The spirits of the land were violated. And if the Bougainvilleans have come out, against all odds, victorious of the physical war, they now have to face a psychological one.

The referendum on Independence planned for 2020 is inching closer. In the North, the government is attempting to resuscitate the Panguna copper mine. In the Centre, around the mine site, many are attempting to imagine a new future for themselves, inclusive of their traditional cultures and identity. The film tells of the past, the road to emancipation, the feeling of abandonment of the rural areas, and of unresolved issues that may resurface should the Panguna copper mine reopen.

Dr Ruth Soavanna (who features in the film) and Luke Fletcher (Executive Director of Jubilee Australia) will conduct a Q&A after the film.

Seed_Water_is_life_image_only_2.jpg

The Panguna Syndrome will screen with Australian short film Water Is Life (26 mins) directed by Cam Suttie.

film introduction.png
amelia-telford.jpg

Amelia Telford, a young Aboriginal and South Sea Islander woman from Bundjalung country is the National Director of Seed Indigenous Youth Climate Network. Amelia is passionate about supporting a national grassroots network of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people to protect land, culture and communities from the impacts of climate change and fossil fuel extraction and be a part of creating positive change for young people. Amelia was awarded National NAIDOC Youth of the Year 2014, Bob Brown's Young Environmentalist for the Year 2015 and Australian Geographic Young Conservationist of the Year 2015 for her commitment to building a more just and sustainable future for all young people.

web banner meet the speakers.png
  Dr Ruth Saovana-Spriggs   Dr Ruth Saovana-Spriggs is a linguist and socio-political scientist based in Bougainville after more than 20 years of working in the linguistics department as tutor, researcher, and lecturer at the Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies (now the School of Culture, History and Language) at the Australian National University, and at the Kiel University’s linguistics department in Germany. She currently leads a couple of projects. One is the establishment of the Bougainville People’s Research Institute and the second project is a work in partnership with local researchers in expanding the work of the Bougainville National Heritage Foundation based in Arawa, Central Bougainville.

Dr Ruth Saovana-Spriggs

Dr Ruth Saovana-Spriggs is a linguist and socio-political scientist based in Bougainville after more than 20 years of working in the linguistics department as tutor, researcher, and lecturer at the Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies (now the School of Culture, History and Language) at the Australian National University, and at the Kiel University’s linguistics department in Germany. She currently leads a couple of projects. One is the establishment of the Bougainville People’s Research Institute and the second project is a work in partnership with local researchers in expanding the work of the Bougainville National Heritage Foundation based in Arawa, Central Bougainville.

  Dr Luke Fletcher   Dr Luke Fletcher is Jubilee Australia’s Executive Director. He has been involved with Jubilee Australia since 2005 in various staff and Board roles. He has co-authored many of Jubilee's major reports including Risky Business (2009), Alternatives to Debtor's Prison (2011), Pipe Dreams (2012), Double or Nothing (2018) and On Shaky Ground (2018). Luke has a PhD from Cambridge in Politics and International Studies (2015) and a Masters from UC Berkeley (2009)

Dr Luke Fletcher

Dr Luke Fletcher is Jubilee Australia’s Executive Director. He has been involved with Jubilee Australia since 2005 in various staff and Board roles. He has co-authored many of Jubilee's major reports including Risky Business (2009), Alternatives to Debtor's Prison (2011), Pipe Dreams (2012), Double or Nothing (2018) and On Shaky Ground (2018). Luke has a PhD from Cambridge in Politics and International Studies (2015) and a Masters from UC Berkeley (2009)

the panguna syndrome banner.jpg
Earlier Event: October 16
The Experimental City
Later Event: October 17
Living the Change