Harvest of Light


Turkish capital Ankara’s district Evren is home to a community of seasonal workers from Urfa. The workers, who come to Evren with their families to harvest onions, are trying to cope with various difficulties while trying to hold on to life.
The documentary “Harvest of Light” is centered around the generator, used as a metaphorical beacon of hope in the film, and operates for only 2 hours a day. In this short time, the workers tell their stories amidst the chaos of labor, perseverance, and the struggle to catch up with life.
The women do the family’s laundry, prepare the next day’s meals, and take care of their children; in short, they never stop. Some of the children admire the lives of their peers on social media, which may or may not resemble their own. The workers try to catch up with life in just two hours… Alternating between light and darkness, these people forget their troubles with the light emitted by electricity, get away from their daily lives, and step into a completely different world.
As the documentary progresses, it crosses the boundaries of time and delves deeper into the lives of the workers. It captures their daily struggles, a mix of long working hours, meager wages, and the constant specter of exploitation. Their never-ending hopes illuminate their search for a better life for themselves and their families.
By exposing the plight of women, the film exposes the gender inequalities and social limitations they face. It reveals the indomitable spirit of these brave women as they challenge norms and pursue equal opportunities.
Through intimate interviews and captivating visuals, “Harvest of Light” interweaves the stories of seasonal workers to create a portrait of their dreams, aspirations, and daily struggles. The documentary seeks to raise awareness of workers’ rights, child labor, women’s empowerment, and the universal right to education.
Focusing on the lives of onion harvest workers in Evren, this documentary exposes a broader global issue, the vulnerability, and exploitation faced by seasonal workers around the world. The documentary invites viewers to reflect on their own consumption habits and reminds us of our responsibility as a society.
Through its compelling storytelling and visuals, the documentary encourages viewers to question the deeper consequences of their actions and reflect on what they can do for a more just and equitable society.


Non-European Documentary

Runtime 00:51:24

Directed by
Esin Özalp Öztürk