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Meryl Streep defends her "we're all Africans" blunder: "I was not minimizing difference"

In a new HuffPo essay, Streep addresses criticism stemming from her Berlin Film Festival controversy


Brendan Gauthier
February 25, 2016 10:40PM (UTC)

Meryl Streep -- who faced criticism earlier this month for her "we're all Africans, really" comment during a press conference as president of the Berlin Film Festival -- penned an essay for The Huffington Post in an apparent effort to clear up any misconceptions as a result of "distorted reporting."

Streep leads with a description of a number of diverse winners from the Festival, which took place this past weekend, including "stories of people from China, Somalia, Mali, Sudan, and Tunisia."

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She calls the films, "testaments to the impact, importance and diversity of global cinema [that] have been smothered in the U.S. by the volume of attention given to five words of mine at an opening press conference."

Streep then offers a brief explainer:

"Contrary to distorted reporting, no one at that press conference addressed a question to me about the racial makeup of the jury. I did not "defend" the "all-white jury," nor would I, if I had been asked to do so. Inclusion -- of races, genders, ethnicities and religions -- is important to me, as I stated at the outset of the press conference."

She adds:

"I was not minimizing difference, but emphasizing the invisible connection empathy enables, a thing so central to the fact of being human, and what art can do: convey another person's experience. To be in Berlin is to see proof that walls don't work."

Read the whole thing at the Huffington Post.

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Brendan Gauthier

Brendan Gauthier is a freelance writer.

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Aol_on Berlin Film Festival Huffington Post Meryl Streep



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