Film Screening of Granito followed by Q&A with Kate Doyle, Senior Analyst for the National Security Archive
Date: 5:30pm PDT March 19, 2015 Location: Miller Hall, Room 105
Miller Hall, Room 105
Kate Doyle is senior analyst of U.S. policy in Latin America at the National Security Archive, a research institute and advocacy organization based at George Washington University that campaigns for the citizen’s right to know, investigates U.S. national security and foreign policy, and uses the Freedom of Information Act to obtain and publish declassified U.S. documents. She directs several major research projects, including the Guatemala Project, which collects declassified U.S. and Guatemalan government documents on the countries’ shared history from 1954, and the Evidence Project, connecting the right to truth and access to information with human rights and justice struggles in Latin America. Since 1992, Doyle has worked with human rights organizations, truth commissions and prosecutors to obtain government records from secret archives that shed light on state violence. She has served as an expert in many human rights criminal cases, including the 2008 trial of Peru’s former President Alberto Fujimori for his role in overseeing military death squads, a the case currently before the Spanish National Court of the 1989 assassination of the Jesuit priests in El Salvador, and the 2013 trial of Guatemalan dictator Efraín Ríos Montt for genocide and crimes against humanity. She edited the Archive’s digital collections of thousands of declassified records on El Salvador and Guatemala and has published dozens of reports, book chapters, articles, and blogs in Spanish-language and U.S. media. In 2012, Doyle was awarded the ALBA / Puffin Foundation prize for Human Rights Activism, which she shared with Fredy Peccerelli of the Forensic Anthropology Foundation of Guatemala.
Granito Plot Summary
Granito: How to Nail a Dictator is a story of destinies joined by Guatemala’s past, and how a documentary film intertwined with a nation’s turbulent history emerges as an active player in the present. In Granito our characters sift for clues buried in archives of mind and place and historical memory, seeking to uncover a narrative that could unlock the past and settle matters of life and death in the present. Each of the five main characters whose destinies collide in Granito are connected by Guatemala’s past. In 1982, Guatemala was engulfed in an armed conflict during which a genocidal “scorched earth” campaign by the military killed nearly 200,000 Maya people including 45,000 disappeared. Now, as if a watchful Maya god were weaving back together threads of a story unraveled by the passage of time, forgotten by most, our characters become integral to the overarching narrative of wrongs done and justice sought that they have pieced together, each adding their granito, their tiny grain of sand, to the epic tale.