When Dian was six years old, she heard a deep rumble and turned to see a tsunami of mud barreling towards her village. Her mother scooped her up to save her from the boiling mud. Her neighbors ran for their lives. Sixteen villages, including Dian’s, were wiped away, forever buried under 60 feet of mud.
A decade later, 60,000 people have been displaced from what was once a thriving industrial and residential area in East Java. Dozens of factories, schools and mosques are completely submerged under a moonscape of ooze and grit. The cause? Lapindo, an Indonesian company drilling for natural gas in 2006, unleashed a violent, unstoppable flow of hot sludge from the earth’s depths. It is estimated that the mudflow will not end for another decade. Shot over the course of six years, GRIT bears witness to Dian’s transformation from young girl to a politically active teenager as she and her mother launch a resistance campaign against the drilling company.
Sponsored by: Southeast Asian Approaches, Carolina Seminars, Carolina Asia Center, and the Department of Geography