Screening – Death of Fear

Screening November 14, 2011 7:00 PM

On 17 December 2010, Mohammed Bouazizi set himself on fire in the small Tunisian town of Sidi Bouzid. According to his family, the 26-year-old street vendor had been stopped by a local official who, when he was unable to pay the bribe she demanded, confiscated his goods and slapped him twice across the face. It was one humiliation too many for a young man already struggling to survive and, unable to recover his goods, he poured fuel over himself and set himself alight.

What made Mohammed’s story different was that his cousin filmed the immediate aftermath on his mobile phone and posted the video on Facebook. Hundreds and then hundreds of thousands saw stark evidence of both the brutality of the regime and their shared sense of despair.

Death of Fear examines how the self-immolation of a penniless fruit seller in Tunisia first ignited mass revolt in the country, then across the region in what we now call The Arab Spring.

Directed by Damian Clarke
48 mins