Lea. Creator: Omar Gabriel. All rights reserved.

Film presentation and talk

Monday, 09. October 2023 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm Save in my calendar

Film presentation and talk

A letter to myself

LGBTQI+ in Lebanon

The fear of not being accepted for who one is by society and especially by one's parents is also a reality for queer people in Germany. The Lebanese mother Valerie sets a good example: she loves her son unconditionally and defies the  curious looks of her neighbours with openness: "Come by and meet Elias!”

Omar Gabriel dedicates one short film each to seven Lebanese in his documentary mini-series "A Letter to Myself". We will show four of them as part of our film series.

The camera accompanies them in Lebanon and in European exile as they write a letter to themselves. In doing so, they reflect on the difficulties of having an unorthodox gender identity or sexuality in a conservative society like Lebanon's; how they are overcoming discomfort in their own bodies and conquering fear, and what gives them courage.

Lebanon is in a downward economic spiral. The state is not fulfilling its duties, power cuts are a daily occurrence and crimes, such as the port explosion in Beirut, go unpunished by the judiciary. The LGBTQI+ scene in Lebanon, which is particularly active compared to other countries in the region, is used as a scapegoat. The state does not protect them from violent attacks by the civilian population and all too often, the state itself is the aggressor. Queer people live with the very real fear of arbitrary arrest and the mistreatment that comes with it. Yet many hold on to their homes, where they have found a vibrant queer community and where their family and friends live.

With Lebanese artist Omar Gabriel, we will talk about the challenges people belonging to the LGBTQI+ community face in Lebanon and what perspectives exist for queer life there.



  • Omar Gabriel, artist, Beirut

Presented by Zuher Jazmati, Host of BBQ - the BlackBrownQueer Podcast, board member of TakeOver - Verein für Intersektionale Kampagnenarbeit and expert advisor at VBRG e.V., Berlin


The film is in Arabic with English subtitles and in English with Arabic subtitles.
The discussion will be held in English.


Linda Böttcher
E-Mail boettcher@boell.de


Watch trailer
Part of the series
Aus nächster Nähe - Biographien aus Nahost und Nordafrika im Film
Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung - Headquarter Berlin
Schumannstr. 8
10117 Berlin
Heinrich Böll Foundation - Headquarters Berlin
In the original with subtitles
In the original with English subtitles