Dying for Gold
"It's the Economy, Stupid!" • 1h 38m
Directed by Catherine Meyburgh & Richard Pakleppa • Documentary • 2019 • 98 minutes
In the biggest class action law suit the country had ever seen, South Africa’s largest gold mining companies were accused of knowingly exposing miners to deadly dust and disease.
Now, harrowing underground footage, intimate interviews with miners and their families, and rare archival material come together in DYING FOR GOLD, the untold story of the making of South Africa.
Coerced by colonial laws, hundreds of thousands of men left their families in Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland and Zimbabwe and and to feed a seemingly endless need for cheap gold-digging labor. They became fodder for companies including Anglo American, AngloGold Ashanti, Goldfields who reaped vast profits at the cost of human lives a system of modern slavery.
After more than a century of this practice, communities have been decimated. Poverty is overwhelming. Decades of men’s absence has left communities broken and unsustainable without their meager salaries. With the miners' inevitable illnesses, including silicosis and tuberculosis, their families are further burdened. The personal stories from miners across the sub-continent is visceral, intensely personal and devastating.
In their gripping documentary, South African director and longtime William Kentridge collaborator Catherine Meyburgh and South African-Namibian director Richard Pakleppa expose a century of deplorable environmental, labor and human rights practices, bringing to light the real cost of gold at last.
Up Next in "It's the Economy, Stupid!"
Directed by Jason Barker • Documentary • 2011 • 52 minutes
Today a new generation of philosophers, artists and political activists are returning to Marx's ideas in order to try to make sense of the crisis and to consider whether a world without or beyond capitalism is possible. Is the severity o...
Directed by Wang Bing • Documentary • 2016 • 152 minutes
The people in Wang Bing's BITTER MONEY lie in filthy, cramped apartments, stare at their phones for far too long, spend time on their balconies overlooking drab streets in which all the buildings look the same, and work long hours for litt...
Directed by Hatuey Viveros Lavielle • Documentary • 2014 • 80 minutes
Jorge is preparing to graduate from law school-the first person from his mountain village in Mexico ever to do so. Chayo, his pregnant 16-year-old sister, faces the most difficult decision of her young life. Meanwhile their qu...