I AM (NOT) A MONSTER – For release in March 2019

Dedicated project website: iamnotamonster.world


Featuring Noam Chomsky, Nadya Tolokonnikova of Pussy Riot, Arjun Appadurai, Richard J. Bernstein, Leon Botstein, Hiroshi Ishiguro, Nobumichi Tosa of Maywa Denki, living national treasure: Kanjuro Kiritake II, Hisa Uzawa and Takayuki Takahashi and more contributors;

with special appearance by Lucy, our ancestor; Hannah Arendt’s grave; monsters; the Rosetta Stone; a hip hop performer shinto priest; a liquid economic machine and much more…

I am (not) a monster is a multi-platform project (feature-length film, short films, events, musical record, and exhibition) demonstrating the state  of ideologies- their origins, formulation and power structures- in contemporary society. It investigates the means by which knowledge is interwoven with the idea of cultural heritage  while  current  development  in  AI  suggests  a  global  notion  of  ‘collectiveness’. 

An original, bombastic and unapolegetic performance of political theorist Hannah Arendt (1906-1975), whose book The Origins of Totalitarianism (1951) and essays such as Truth and Politics (1967) are introduced as ‘urgently’ relevant to our times with a recent spike of interest in her work now translated in more than dozens of languages. Interviewing Hannah Arendt’s former students and key philosophers and activists, ‘designer of experiences’ Nelly Ben-Hayoun takes Hannah Arendt on a world tour in 16 cities; an impossible pursuit to four continents – looking for the origins, mechanics and power dynamics behind knowledge. Trained by Noh theatre and Kabuki experts in Japan, with puppets in hand, Ben-Hayoun is questioning the ownership and plurality of our thoughts, and the means by which freedom of learning and innovative educative federations can exist in contemporary times.  She is hoping to return from her travels in Japan, Ethiopia, California, Arizona, New York State, United Kingdom, Italy, France and Germany with the source of knowledge in her suitcase so that she can share it with her students, down below, in the University of the Underground.