Calling the Ghosts: a Story About Rape, War and Women

1996, 63 minutes
Directors: Mandy Jacobson and Karmen Jelincic
Executive Producer: Julia Ormond
Distributed by Women Make Movies

Courtesy of Women Make Movies

Additional Resources


Documentary Films

50 Years of Silence (1994, 57 minutes)
Director: Ned Lander with Carol Ruff and James Bradley
Distributor: First Run/Icarus Films (
      This film depicts the wartime experiences of Jan Ruff-O'Herne and other young Dutch women who were forced into prostitution in Semarang when the Japanese in Indonesia imprisoned them and their families in camps during World War II.

Against My Will (2002, 50 minutes)
Director: Ayfer Ergün
Distributor: First Run/Icarus Films (
Produced by Humanist Broadcasting Foundation and Ayfer Ergün.
      This program investigates violence against women in Pakistan, where concepts of family honor and the status of women as property perpetuate the practice of "honor" killing: the murder of women by male relatives for behavior deemed socially or morally unacceptable. One of the women interviewed at the women's shelter in Lahore, Kubra, is murdered three weeks after she returns to her family.

Environmentalists Under Fire: Defending Those Who Give the Earth a Voice (2000, 21 minutes)
Distributor: Amnesty International (
      Amnesty International and the Sierra Club draw attention to nations where human rights abuses are being committed against environmental activists, and take action to stop the abuses, which include beatings, harassment, detention, rape, torture and murder.

How Nice to See You Alive (Que bom te ver viva) (1989, 100 minutes)
Director: Lúcia Mura
Distributor: Women Make Movies (
Produced by Fundação do Cinema Brasileiro, et al., written by Lúcia Mura.
      This film features interviews with women who survived torture and imprisonment for political offenses following the Brazilian military coup of 1968, interspersed with a fictional dramatization of the life of a survivor.

Human Tragedy: The Faces of Kosovo (1999, 50 minutes)
Distributor: A&E Home Video (
CBS News Productions; A&E Television Networks; produced by Jonathan Talmadge, written by Harry Smith and Jonathan Talmadge, hosted by Harry Smith; originally produced for television in 1998.
      Harry Smith spends five days in a refugee camp in Macedonia interviewing Albanian refugees from Kosovo.

License to Kill (2000, 45 minutes)
Distributor: Filmmakers Library (
Originally broadcast on the BBC; produced by Fiona Lloyd-Davies, reported by Olenka Frenkiel.
      This video investigates cases of women murdered in Pakistan in the name of honor, and the impunity granted to perpetrators based on a fundamentalist interpretation of Islam.

Mirror to History: Confronting War Crimes in Bosnia (2000, 52 minutes)
Director: Christian DeFrancia
Distributor: Filmwest Associates (
Produced in cooperation with Witness; written by Christian DeFrancia.
      In this grassroots documentary, the film covers the international tribunal for the prosecution of persons responsible for serious violations of international humanitarian law committed in the territory of the former Yugoslavia, top political officials, civilians and victims help demystify the Bosnian conflict while exposing truths about the nature of prosecuting individuals for crimes against humanity.

Operation Fine Girl: Rape Used as a Weapon of War in Sierra Leone (2001, 43 minutes)
Director: Lilibet Foster
Distributor: Witness (
A Witness production in association with Oxygen Media; produced by Lilibet Foster.
      This documentary is about the use of sexual violence against women as a weapon in the Sierra Leone civil war.

Rights & Wrongs. (1993, 30 minutes)
Director: Eulogio L. Oritz, Jr.
Distributor: Video Project (
A co-production of Globalvision and WNET Thirteen; program producer, Howie Masters.
      Video 3 of 3 part series, Women Under Attack, this episode focuses on the universality of rape and the urgent need for human rights for women, revealed by the systematic rape of women in Bosnia by Serbian soldiers. It includes reports on worldwide state-sponsored violence towards women, and the international human rights movement's efforts to stop the violence by documenting events to establish criminal charges and bring the violators to justice. Victims offer testimony of events in Bosnia, Kashmir, and Peru. A rape room is shown in Kurdistan, Northern Iraq. Female genital mutilation in Africa and Asia is described in personal testimony as well as in an interview with Alice Walker about her documentary films.

Women's Rights, a Global Movement. (1995, 50 minutes)
Distributor: Chip Taylor Communications (
Produced by Globalvision, Inc.
      Part 1 of 3 part series, The Fight Against Rape, this film examines evidence indicating that rape has become a conscious war strategy in many conflicts, including Bosnia, Kashmir, and Iraq. It includes interviews with experts and activists. It also looks at the emergence of a global women's movement, which is trying to get rape classified as a "crime against humanity." The video includes a music video by Sweet Honey in the Rock.



Amnesty International. Bosnia-Herzegovina: Rape and Sexual Abuse by Armed Forces. New York, NY: Amnesty International U.S.A., 1993.

Askin, Kelly Dawn. War Crimes Against Women: Prosecution in international War Crimes Tribunals. The Hague; Cambridge, MA: M. Nijhoff Publishers; distributed in the USA and Canada by Kluwer Law International, 1997.

Barstow, Anne Llewellyn. War's Dirty Secret: Rape, Prostitution, and Other Crimes Against Women. Cleveland, OH: Pilgrim Press, 2000.

Human Rights Watch/Helsinki. Bosnia and Herzegovina: Hopes Betrayed: Trafficking of Women and Girls to Post-Conflict Bosnia and Herzegovina for Forced Prostitution. New York, NY: Human Rights Watch, 2002.

Power, Samantha. A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide. New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 2002.


Web Sites

Berlin Film Festival, Calling the Ghosts
      Contains background on the film and an interview with filmmaker Mandy Jacobsen.

Calling the Ghosts (film home page)

NONA, Calling the Ghosts
      Site devoted to Calling the Ghosts from NONA, the first gallery in Croatia that is exclusively dedicated to showing women's work. It includes audio and video clips and more information on the situation in Bosnia and Croatia. NONA Multimedia Women's Center is a place of conversation, creativity, and healing for women and children from Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina who live in Zagreb, the capitol of Croatia.

Reconciliation and Culture Cooperative Network
      Reconciliation and Culture Cooperative Network (RACCOON) is a nonprofit organization interested in providing space for like-minded people dedicated to conflict resolution among ethnic groups, particularly in post-Yugoslav societies, by means of contemporary culture exchange programs. While acknowledging the inability to eradicate all scars of ethnic cleansing, RACCOON aims to strike back at the politically manipulated cultural patterns, which helped support ethnic cleansing programs.

War Crimes Against Women aka Calling the Ghosts

Women Make Movies (Calling the Ghosts distributor)
      Women Make Movies is a multicultural, multiracial, non-profit media arts organization which facilitates the production, promotion, distribution and exhibition of independent films and videotapes by and about women. Women Make Movies was established to address the under representation and misrepresentation of women in the media industry.


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