VICKIE ZHANG



cultural geographer

of
affect, mobilities, work
negativity
    affective transitions






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Film review — Holding Tightly: Custom and Healing in Timor-Leste

In early 2022, we held the first screening of Lisa Palmer and Susanna Barnes’ newest documentary, Holding Tightly: Custom and Healing in Timor Leste, in the Geography Seminar Series at the University of Melbourne.

I had the honour of being the discussant for the screening, and wrote up my comments in a film review for The AAG Review of Books. You can read the review here.

The 30-minute film explores seven different approaches to healing in Baucau, Timor-Leste’s second-largest city, as seen through the eyes of practitioners, patients, people and place. It explores the, variously complementary and antagonistic relation between folk remedies and western medicine, ultimately demonstrating how pharmacological intervention and spiritual connection are profoundly entangled in customary practices of healing in Timor today.

Watch the full film at Wai Mata Films, part of the Arkivu Dijitál Kultura No Ekolojia Timor-Leste, or stream the film alongside other films by geographers at IAG Film Shorts.
04/2022