Questions for feminist film studies

Document Type

Journal article

Source Publication

Journal of the Moving Image

Publication Date

Fall 1999



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Jadavpur University


This paper grew out of my conviction that the current critical practice of film studies in India ought to more centrally include (a) modes of critical cultural analysis inspired by feminism, (b) theorization of gender questions and/ in their intersections with other crucial political issues of our time, and (c) investigation of film studies questions in relation to women (relating to cinematic apparatus, spectators, textual analysis, etc.). The paucity of serious feminist film criticism in our context is all the more apparent when we see the work being done in related areas such as literary studies or historiography.

This is not, however, a call for the formation of a separate branch of film studies but an attempt to take stock of interventions which have already been made, and pose some further questions to be addressed. I would like to make an attempt to list out the preoccupations of a few contemporary feminist writers, and to see if there are any commonalities among them. The four writers are Shohini Ghosh, Dulali Nag, Lalita Gopalan and Patricia Uberoi, and their essays cover popular cinema in Hindi, Telugu and Bengali. While Ghosh and Gopalan examine films from the 1980s and 90s, Uberoi talks about a film from the 60s and Nag about one from the 50s.

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Recommended Citation

Niranjana, T. (1999). Questions for feminist film studies. Journal of the Moving Image, (1), 91-101. Retrieved from http://jmionline.org/article/questions_for_feminist_film_studies