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January 21st, 2009

Women have become primary targets in today’s armed conflicts and are suffering unprecedented casualties. Simultaneously, they are emerging as necessary partners in brokering lasting peace and as leaders in forging new international laws governing conflict. Yet the image of war portrayed by the media covers very little of either end of this spectrum — until now. Discussions about the multiplicity of women’s roles in war and peace are underway in boardrooms, conference halls, and on the floor of the U.N., but the media has lagged behind, offering images of women in conflict situations that are rarely nuanced and portraying them solely as collateral damage — when they are seen as “a story” at all.

THIRTEEN and Fork Films are producing a bold new mini-series Women, War & Peace to challenge the conventional wisdom that war and peace are men’s domain and to place women at the center of an urgent dialogue about conflict and security. Women, War & Peace will focus on women’s strategic role in the post-Cold War era, where globalization, arms trafficking, and illicit trade have intersected to create a whole new type of war.

Women, War & Peace will present its groundbreaking message across the globe using all forms of media, including U.S. and international primetime television, radio, print, and web. PBS is proud to be the first to bring this conversation to primetime national television. Planned for broadcast in early 2011, Women, War & Peace will be the most comprehensive global media initiative ever mounted on the roles of women in war and peace.

Women, War & Peace is spearheaded by Executive Producers Abigail E. Disney, Pamela Hogan, and Gini Reticker.  The 5-part series will include the U.S. television premiere of Reticker and Disney’s previous collaboration, the acclaimed Pray the Devil Back to Hell, about the role women played in bringing peace to Liberia after 14 years of civil war. The film won the Best Documentary Prize at the 2008 Tribeca Film Festival and the Silverdocs Witness Award, among others, and was the first film to be shown at The World Economic Forum at Davos. Hogan and Reticker won an Emmy for their previous collaboration, WIDE ANGLE’s Ladies First, about the leadership role of Rwandan women 10 years after the genocide.

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