PDC: Film screening on Dec 1

Film screening: IDA (2013)ida_2013_film

Polish Discussion Club: Dec 1, 2016
Buch B 309 at 5:00 pm

Directed by Paweł Pawlikowski.

A young woman is on the verge of taking vows as a Catholic nun. Her aunt tells her that her parents were Jewish. They embark on a road trip to learn the fate of their family.


2 thoughts on “PDC: Film screening on Dec 1”

  1. Amazing film! Though “Ida” is most often hailed as an important commentary on Polish-Jewish identities and relations since WWII, the film actually diverges from this at Ida’s moment of catharsis: Her transition from pious nun to woman of the world occurs not when she discovers that she is Jewish, but when her aunt, her only surviving relative from the time of the war, commits suicide. Ida’s transition from religious devotion to carnal exploration is an expression of grief as much as as self-discovery. Such a shift occurs not because she is Jewish or because she was brought up Catholic; she is simply a human being, searching herself out for the first time beyond the social constructions of religion and ethnicity. Coming to know of the familial context of her Jewishness was not where Ida departed from her way of life as a devout nun; in a much more personal vein rather, she takes on her deceased aunt’s way of life, figures out why her aunt lived as she did, what she experienced, how she went about her day. There, Ida transcends both Catholicism and Judaism; Polishness and Jewishness. Learning to side-step prescriptions as she grieves, she gains her agency as a person who makes her choices knowingly, who is aware of where she comes from, who has tasted enough of life’s palette to understand why she wants whatever it is she will choose for herself.

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