JUMP CUT
A REVIEW OF CONTEMPORARY MEDIA

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Consciousness-raising and difference in The Woman’s Film and Self-Health

 

Shilyh Warren

Shilyh Warren is Assistant Professor of Aesthetics and Film Studies at The University of Texas at Dallas. She has also taught courses on documentary and women’s cinema at North Carolina State University. Her research and teaching interests span the field of documentary studies and also include experimental film.

In her graduate work, she struggled to understand how women’s documentary films of the 1970s both shaped and reflected feminist and film activism and theory. Currently at work on a book project about women’s cinema, she seeks to forge unlikely connections between contemporary feminist cinema and forgotten films of the 1970s.

Happily, since she first began this research in the early 2000s, films that once existed only in their original formats in the basements of select institutions or in the private archives of filmmakers are now available digitally from distributors such as Women Make Movies, Icarus Films, and Third World Newsreel. Programming and researching these films has become easier and more affordable, and scholarship about these films and their lasting influence continues to expand. Part of her own commitment to these films happens through programming, including a series titled, “The Features (and shorts) of the Feminist Seventies” commissioned by the Women’s Studies Program at Duke University.