Growing Up Married: Representing forced marriage on screen

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According to the UNICEF report entitled ‘Ending Child Marriage: Progress and Prospects’ (2014), there are 700 million women who were married as children, and 280 million girls are at risk of becoming child brides. In Turkey, according to the reports written by feminist organisations 1 in 3 marriages there is a child. These figures are alarming and signal the need for further and urgent research in the field. In 2016 I made my first ever film entitled Growing Up Married. The film explores what happens after child marriage by focusing on the stories of four women from Turkey and making their experiences visible and audible, in an attempt to contribute to and advance debates around this significant, complex and emotionally charged human rights issue which has often been discursively silenced. Working on a documentary film on forced marriage in Turkey poses challenges to me as a UK-trained and based academic, who focuses on theories around feminism and media rather than filmmaking practice. In this article, I critically reflect upon the process of making a documentary film, and theories around interviewing women to examine the tensions inherent within representing forced marriage on screen.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)229-241
Number of pages13
JournalCritical Discourse Studies
Issue number2
Early online date20 Sep 2019
Publication statusPublished - 14 Mar 2020


  • Forced marriage
  • child brides
  • practice research
  • public engagement with research
  • research impact

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