Take Action Around 'The World Before Her'
- Host a series of screenings for young people and use the film as an opportunity to talk about gender role expectations: Boys and Girls Clubs, Scout troops (both Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts), girl-only groups, such as Girls Inc.
- Have a Women's Pathways to Power event for girls and women (mothers, grandmothers, female community and business leaders, church elders). Invite the women to share the stories of their individual paths to success and compare those paths to those taken by the young women in the film.
- Invite a speaker who specializes in women and development issues to compare conditions for women in India with conditions for women in other developing and industrialized nations, and/or to compare conditions for women with conditions for men. Discuss which conditions provide women with the greatest amount of freedom, security, health and economic opportunity.
- Investigate the role that media play in perpetuating specific standards of beauty. Look at who sponsors and makes money from beauty pageants. Discuss how pageants are specifically designed to serve the economic interests of those sponsors or owners. Contact the sponsors to let them know what you think about their events' messages about women.
Get informed about the issues in the film and lead a discussion in your community.
This guide is an invitation to dialogue. It is based on a belief in the power of human connection, designed for people who want to use The World Before Her to engage family, friends, classmates, colleagues and communities. In contrast to initiatives that foster debates in which participants try to convince others that they are right, this document envisions conversations undertaken in a spirit of openness in which people try to understand one another and expand their thinking by sharing viewpoints and listening actively.
In this lesson plan, students will watch a segment of the film The World Before Her and then compare and contrast the very different visions of "true womanhood" endorsed by the film's two protagonists.
This list of fiction and nonfiction books, compiled by Rachael Weyand of Portland Public Library, provides a range of perspectives on the issues raised by the POV documentary The World Before Her.