Life and Debt
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Life and Debt

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  • Directed by: Stephanie Black
  • Produced by: Stephanie Black
Released: 2003
Running Time: 86 min
Subtitles: English


Jamaica, land of sea, sand, and sun... and a prime example of the complexities of economic globalization on the world's developing countries. This scathing film is an unapologetic look at the "new world order" from the point of view of Jamaican workers and farmers, as well as government and policy officials. With twenty-five years of "help" from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank intended to bring Third World nations such as Jamaica into the fold of free market economies, these "restructuring" policies have crippled Jamaica's efforts toward self-reliant development while enriching the lenders. Featuring a dynamic reggae soundtrack and a searing voice over based on text by Jamaica Kincaid, as well as interviews with former Jamaican Prime Minister Michael Manley, former Deputy Director of the IMF Stanley Fisher, and former President of Haiti Jean-Bertrand Aristide, LIFE AND DEBT portrays the relationship between Jamaican poverty and the practices of international lending agencies while driving home the devastating consequences of globalization.



"**** Powerful!...Offers the clearest analysis of globalization and its negative effects that I've ever seen."
—Stephen Holden, The New York Times

"A must-see film."
—Michael M. Thomas, New York Observer

"Eye opening... Powerfully illustrates what globalization has been doing to underdeveloped countries."
—Jonathan Rosenbaum, The Chicago Reader