About this film screening and conversation

Please join the Center for the Study of Women and Society for a screening of No More Tears Sister, featuring guest speakers Dr. Sharika Thiranagam and filmmaker Helene Klodawsky.

A story of love, revolution, and betrayal, No More Tears Sister explores the price of truth in times of war. Set during the violent ethnic conflict that has enveloped Sri Lanka over decades, the documentary recreates the courageous and vibrant life of renowned human rights activist, Dr. Rajani Thiranagama. Mother, anatomy professor, and symbol of hope, Rajani was assassinated at the age of thirty-five. Stunningly photographed, using rare archival footage, intimate correspondence and poetic recreations, the story of Rajani and her family delves into rarely explored themes - revolutionary women and their dangerous pursuit of justice. This film screening is free and open to all.


About the Speakers

Sharika Thiranagama

Sharika Thiranagama is Associate Professor of Anthropology at Stanford. Her research has examined how political mobilization and domestic life intersect, focusing on highly fraught contexts of violence, inequality, and intense political mobilization. Her work on Sri Lanka explores changing forms of ethnicisation, the effects of protracted civil war on ideas of home in the midst of profound displacement and the transformations in and relationships between the political and the familial in the midst of political repression and militarization. She has also conducted research in Kerala, South India based in the Palakkad district, primarily on caste and with Dalit communities. She examines how communist-led political mobilization reconfigured older caste identities, re-entrenching caste inequities into new kinds of private neighborhood life. Her work focuses on the household as the prime site of the inheritance of work, stigma and servitude, as well as the possibility of inheritance, dignity, and social mobility.

Helene Klodawsky

Independent filmmaker Helene Klodawsky is a Montreal-based storyteller committed to portraying political and social struggles, as well as to exploring the documentary art form. Her award-winning work, spanning thirty-five years, is screened and televised around the world in venues as diverse as New York’s Museum of Modern Art and Kenyan refugee camps.

Her work includes Painted Landscapes of the Times (1984), Shoot and Cry (1986), Motherland (1994), What If? (1998) Undying Love (2002) No More Tears Sister (2004) Family Motel (2007) Malls R Us (2009) Come Worry With Us! (2013) Grassroots in Dry Lands (2015) From Janet With Love (2017) and The Invisible Everywhere (2019). Helene most recent work is Stolen Time, produced by Intuitive Pictures and The National Film Board of Canada. The feature documentary follows elder rights lawyer Melissa Miller as she confronts the financialization of elder care.

Helene’s films have received awards and nominations from the Academy of Canadian Cinema, Hot Docs, Les Rendez-vous du Cinema Quebecois, Rencontres Internationales du Documentaire de Montréal, The World Press Photo Festival, The Montréal International Festival of Films on Art, Columbus Film Festival to name a few. The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, POV/PBS, CTV, Channel Four, Canal+, and The Australian Broadcasting Corporation are among the broadcasters she has collaborated with.

Reviews and articles about her documentaries have appeared in The Globe and Mail, New York Times, Newsweek International, Variety, Hollywood Reporter, La Presse, Le Devoir, Nouvelle Observateur, The Independent, BBC News, Asian Tribune, Art in America, and Art Forum. Helene's films appear in university curricula worldwide.

Helene is also a script consultant who works with emerging documentary directors, both in Canada and around the world.

A graduate of the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Klodawsky is a member of the Writer’s Guild of Canada, The Documentary Organization of Canada, Film Fatales and Réalisatrices Équitables.

This event is organized and hosted by the Center for the Study of Women and Society, and co-sponsored by the Queens College Women's and Gender Studies Department, the Women's Studies Quarterly, the Center for the Humanities, and the Film, Anthropology, and Critical Psychology Departments at the CUNY Graduate Center.