Making women amateur filmmakers visible: Reclaiming women’s work through the film archive

Keith Johnston, Sarah Hill

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
36 Downloads (Pure)


This article considers the place of women’s amateur film within regional and national film archive holdings through a specific case study of the ‘Women Amateur Filmmakers in Britain’ project at the East Anglian Film Archive (EAFA). Reflecting on the process of cataloguing and presenting this collection, the article will explore the challenges of making women’s creative filmed work visible, suggesting that women’s amateur films exist at a crucial overlap of archival oversight and cultural stigma. We argue that prevailing associations of archive film with space, place and location could prevent feminist-led projects from gaining traction in the contested world of exhibition where locality often overshadows other thematic or stylistic approaches. We argue that only by reconsidering the types of films that are prioritised for preservation and presentation can women’s films be made fully visible.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)875-889
Number of pages15
JournalWomen's History Review
Issue number5
Early online date7 Jan 2020
Publication statusPublished - 28 Jul 2020


  • feminism
  • film
  • archives
  • women
  • history

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