Occupying the western ⅓ of Hispaniola Island (shared with the Dominican Republic), Haiti’s population is nearly entirely of African or mixed European-African descent. The country is the poorest in the entire Americas, and faces a number of development challenges. Perhaps the most widely-known disruptive event is the 2010 earthquake, which devastated the capital and caused over 200,000 deaths (although the exact number is unknown). In addition to natural disasters (including hurricanes), Haiti faces challenges that emanate mainly from its high poverty rate, including high infant mortality rates, disproportionate levels of violence and an ever-worsening hunger crisis.
An intrinsic aspect of Eureka’s motivation is to promote and give visibility to local, national and regional content, in particular that of women, people of color and Indigenous people. This effort has a double objective: a) to promote representation and give visibility to voices that are unfortunately still marginalized, and b) to challenge dominant narratives based on content closer to local realities. Given the structural inequalities in both the publishing and cinema industry, we know that by default, people predominantly consume content produced by white men (and do so without realizing it). The first step is to make this systematically visible, so it can be taken into account in people’s choice. To do so, we are designing a “diverse representation notation” to be assigned to every book and movie listed in the platform, specifically in terms of authorship (i.e. female, male, non-binary, trans, other) and content (i.e. percentage of female vs. male dialogues). These notations will be based on how authors self-identify, and will be designed with the ability to become more complex in order to include new categories as needed.