Of the Dust

Created by Anatole Sloan

Description:

Our story follows Diago Acosta. A representative of the government, he has been sent into the Amazon jungle to begin a dialogue with indigenous communities, encouraging them to move from their land. The film starts in an agricultural plantation within the Amazon, growing corn on an industrial scale. This is the last outpost of his world. As he journeys further into the Amazon, he encounters a small, isolated tribe. Whilst he is welcomed, most members are cautious around him, following the warning of their chief. Yet two in particular do not share the same caution – Damiana and Marco, young members of the tribe. Diago focuses his attention on them. He shows them wonders from his world, and they are a delight to Damiana and Marco's eyes. Succumbing to the temptations of the modern world, they choose to support Diago in his mission. Their choice causes a crisis in their community, and Damiana and Marco instead return with Diago, where they begin to understand the terrible consequences of their choice.

Biblical Connection:

Genesis 2-3. 1. Ecological narrative. The Genesis creation stories are hugely important in any Christian discussion of our relationship with nature, showing our place as stewards of this world. The film combines this theological narrative with a highly poignant and current story of deforestation and displacement of peoples in the Amazon. 2. Anthropological connections. There is a fascinating parallel between the early Genesis stories and the development of societies. Adam and Eve reflect an early (hunter) gatherer community. Cain and Abel are the first agrarian community, and Babel is the first great city. Anthropologists talk of the increase in conflict and power structures as societies become more complex; hunter/gatherer communities for example tend to have very little internal conflict. This is reflected also in the exponential increase in conflict within the Genesis narratives – beginning with the taking of the fruit, to the first murder with Cain and Abel and then challenging God in the tower of Babel. 3. Eden as home; the Fall as a state of homelessness. The film's narrative of loss of home through a fall from grace directly reflects the state of homelessness into which we are cast upon our expulsion from Eden.

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