This Stained Dawn: IWD film screening and Q&A with Anam Abbas

We are delighted to host This Stained Dawn film director and producer, Anam Abbas, for an International Women’s Day film screening and Q&A.

This Stained Dawn is a documentary about Aurat March (Women’s March) in Pakistan. The screening will be followed by a question and answer session with the film director and producer Anam Abbas, and will be chaired by Deepta Chopra, SuPWR Princicple Investigator.

Illustration. Text in the middle saying 'This Stained Dawn' on an orange cloth. Women's faces surround the cloth and two surveillance cameras at the bottom of the illustration point toward them.

Film synopsis

Karachi’s feminists organise a woman’s march, coming up against Pakistan’s radical religious right, and negotiating a deeply surveilled, paranoia-inducing, and often physically violent space in the hopes of a revolution. A philosophical work, This Stained Dawn is not just about the march, but about the act of political organising itself.

Director’s statement

In 2018, I was able to participate in the organisation of a historic, diverse and joyous Women’s March in Karachi, which in 2019 and 2020 was replicated in 11 cities in Pakistan, resulting in heated, and much needed debates about the role of women in domestic and public spaces and a massive outcry from the religious right. As the state pushes a narrative that criminalizes feminists and accuses the movement of being anti-state and funded by anti-state actors, the film retorts by presenting a reality of grassroots work, political and ideological engagement and a multiplicity of voices that make the current moment.


Anam Abbas is a Pakistan-based Pakistani/Canadian filmmaker. As a producer and DOP, her first feature Showgirls of Pakistan, premiered in competition at IDFA 2020 and was released globally by VICE. This Stained Dawn is her debut feature as a Director. She is also one of the founders of the Documentary Association of Pakistan (DAP).


Deepta Chopra the SuPWR Principal Investigator, and is a Professorial Research Fellow at the Institute of Development Studies. She is a feminist social scientist working on women’s empowerment and gendered politics of policy processes.