Gender SEAMS Research Team
Gender SEAMS Research Projects
Lights, Camera, Activism: Sexism | Cinema
- John Purcell, Rebecca Oldham, Dana Weiser, and Elizabeth Sharp
"Sexism | Cinema" is an interdisciplinary film series which considers how sexism is embedded, endorsed, and/or challenged in cinema. To date, there have been nine films screened, each of which has been followed by a 30-minute discussion led by TTU faculty members and/or expert guest speakers.
We examine the use of an interdisciplinary film series "2015 Sexism | Cinema: 50 years on the Silver Screen" as a space for discussion where community members, students, and feminist scholars can discover allies, express critical thought, and advance their own thinking. A film series is a useful response to the widespread problem of campus sexual assault in three critical ways: (1) a theater provides an informal, recreational space for discussion of feminist thought, (2) the content of the films highlight the insidious nature of sexual violence and gender inequality in our culture and (3) there exists a degree of separation that subverts defensiveness while inspiring a critical dialogue. We discuss the utility of a film series as a way to create feminist-informed dialogue about and accessibly approach the cultural antecedents of sexual violence on college campuses. We offer our own experiences of the film series and recommend film inside and outside the classroom as a feminist pedagogical tool.