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Entertainment of Monday, 15 November 2021


Unveiling: How a young woman, Kuukua Eshun, is drawing attention to sexual violence through film

Unveiling will be first shown at the Museum Ostwall im Dortmunder U from December 10, 2021 Unveiling will be first shown at the Museum Ostwall im Dortmunder U from December 10, 2021

• Films are avenues for highlighting challenges of society

• Many women experience various forms of sexual abuse

• Kuukua Eshun and Akpene Diata Hoggar are changing the narratives through storytelling the documentaries way

With growing cases of abuse and sexual exploitation of women and very few avenues for them to voice their concerns, a young Ghanaian woman has decided to use film to bring attention to sexual assault and violence among women.

Kuukua Eshun’s ‘Unveiling’ is a documentary that was created as a result of two women being vulnerable with each other, eventually deciding to reveal certain truths to each other.

It is estimated that approximately 35% of women worldwide have experienced some form of sexual harassment in their lifetime. In the majority of countries that have data available on rape, reports say that less than 40% of women who experience sexual violence seek help, with less than 10% seeking help from law enforcement.

Produced by Akpene Diata Hoggar (Miss Universe from 2018- 2020) and Kuukua Eshun, the fast-rising young female director is based in Ghana. She has worked with artists and platformers like Michaela Coel, Wizkid, Vic Mensa, Huawei, Facebook, Variety Magazine, Lifetime TV, The Economist, among others, is bringing this story to light.

Speaking with GhanaWeb ahead of the release of the film, Kuukua Eshun, who has built a legacy from telling stories that express strength and dominance through accessing spaces of feeling, sensitivity and dichotomous human experiences, explained that she hopes this will shed more light on sexual violence.

“Many women who experience sexual violence rarely report or come forward about their incidences, and exact rape numbers are challenging to report. While many countries have laws against the act of sexual assault and violence, many of them are insufficient, inconsistent, and not systematically enforced,” she said.

It is for such things that she has, in the past, championed gender-equality issues by protesting on the streets of Accra every so often.

Recently too, she collaborated with UNFPA Ghana to hold a healing session for young women who are survivors of sexual assault.

Together with the former beauty queen, they are creating a powerful documentary exploring the strength and healing process of rape/sexual assault survivors.

“As young African women, we believe in letting our voices be heard and standing up against wrong being done to our gender across the world and most importantly, telling it from the African perspective. It is imperative that we tell stories of violence against women as a form of raising awareness as an effort to putting a stop to rape, sexual abuse and assault.

“This project hits really close to home for both of us. We share that we’ve also experienced first-hand sexual assault on different occasions at different times in our lives,” she said.

Kuukua Eshun and Akpene Diata Hoggar believe they owe the generation of women who will come after them, with a desire to create a safer community than what it currently is.

It is the hope that this documentary film will start conversations around this important issue, becoming the norm in our society.

The ‘Unveiling’ documentary was commissioned by the ANO Institute of Arts & Knowledge and will be first shown at the Museum Ostwall im Dortmunder U from December 10, 2021, to March 6, 2022.

The two, Kuukua and Akpene, ultimately hope to set up organizations and collectives that will consistently create a safe space for survivors of sexual violence to be held a few times in a month, building a strong network of African/Black communities who will support and help each other grow beyond the shared trauma.