This Stained Dawn
Dagh Dagh Ujala

Canada, Pakistan202189 minUrdu, English with English subtitlesNorth American PremiereDocumentary, Reel Asian Award Winner, Women Filmmakers

In the electrifying lead-up to the multi-city Aurat March (Women’s March) in Pakistan, director Anam Abbas follows grassroots organizers as they navigate a deeply surveilled and violent environment to assert a growing, nation-wide feminist movement. Negotiating freedoms with fearful relatives and dodging constant scrutiny, activists move with unbreakable commitment to galvanizing their communities with a radical feminist agenda.

Using observational footage of heated organizing conversations and extensive coverage of the movement and its backlash across 11 cities, Abbas constructs a layered narrative, astutely tracing state suppression of women’s resistance in Pakistan to the damage caused by its colonial past. This Stained Dawn (Dagh Dagh Ujala), which borrows its title from a verse by revolutionary poet Faiz Ahmed Faiz about the tainted dawn after a violent partition, is a powerful record of a turning point in Pakistan’s history, as one of the most urgent displays of large-scale feminist organizing gains remarkable momentum and promise.

- Mariam Zaidi



Sheffield DocFest

Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival


Director Bio

Anam Abbas

Anam Abbas is a Pakistani Canadian film producer, director and cinematographer. She is a 2018 Berlinale Talent, 2020 Berlinale Talents Project Market, 2019 Film Independent Global Media Maker, and 2020 Cannes Producers Network Fellow. Abbas is also one of the founding members of the Documentary Association of Pakistan.

Q&A moderated by Farrah Khan

Farrah Safia Khan has spent two decades raising awareness about the intersections of gender-based violence and equity through education, policy, and advocacy. She is the founder of Possibility Seeds, a member of the Government of Canada’s Advisory Council on the Strategy to Prevent and Address Gender-Based Violence and the Manager of Consent Comes First at Ryerson University.

Available to Ontario audience only

10 Nov, 2021

to 19 Nov, 2021




With Support From

Community Partner


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