‘Faya Dayi - Jessica Beshir’

25 Feb.'22
- 19:00

The screening will be followed by a conversation with Jessica Beshir (director) moderated by Lyse Ishimwe (Recognition). 

Ethiopian legend has it that khat, a stimulant leaf, was found by Sufi Imams in search of eternity. Inspired by this myth, Faya Dayi is a spiritual journey into the highlands of Harar immersed in the rituals of khat, a leaf that Sufi Muslims chewed for religious meditations – and Ethiopia’s most lucrative cash crop today. Through the prism of the khat trade, Faya Dayi weaves a tapestry of intimate stories of people caught between violent government repression, khat-induced fantasies and treacherous journeys beyond their borders, and offers a window into the dreams of the youth who long for a better life.

Jessica Beshir is a Mexican-Ethiopian filmmaker, producer and cinematographer based in Brooklyn. She graduated in Film Studies and Literature at UCLA, after which she made several internationally acclaimed short films. He Who Dances on Wood (2016) and Hairat (2017) that premiered at Sundance, was screened at IFFR and IDFA and won several awards at various other festivals. Faya Dayi (2021) is her feature debut.


Recognition is a Brussels-based initiative with an aim of increasing the visibility of African and African diaspora art, literature and culture via community-based film screenings, workshops and expositions. It is an effort to identify, remember and acknowledge the work that has for so long been marginalized and left on the sidelines from mainstream media. Recognition was founded in 2016 by Lyse Ishimwe Nsengiyumva. Film screenings take place every month at various cinemas and cultural institutions in Brussels. The program focuses on films by and about people of African descent.

Practical information



Rue Ravenstein 23 1000 BRUSSELS


  • Subtitles: English

(ET, QA, US, 2021, DCP, 120')



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