October 7, 2012 • Podcasts
Feminism on Film
Continued from page 3
Nobuko Anan: My name is Nobuko Anan, and I’m from Japan, and I’m working on contemporary Japanese ways of performance in various different mediums such as theatre or streets, or manga or film or fashion and that kind of thing, and I’m a lecturer here at Northumbria.
JD: I asked Nobuko about the themes in the film and how they might relate to modern Japanese feminism, given that the film was made in 1989.
NA: Oh, it could be relevant, because I think Hanayugi, the protagonist, well, she really doesn’t reveal her age. But I feel like maybe she belongs to the generation of the second feminist, the second women’s liberation. So, the seventies generation. So I’m really curious what was happening around that time. People who started their work in the late seventies, there were a few people who were very feminist and they critiqued –well, like I said, they critiqued gender system, gender discrimination in relation to the empire system and all that. So, after that, there are no so-called feminist performers, like, um, feminist in a very direct way. But in my work, I’m arguing that we can look at their work from feminist perspectives, even that they don’t really claim that we are feminist. Especially younger generations, they don‘t really overemphasize the politics like the previous generations. But that doesn’t mean that they have no politics at all.
So, I think it’s the way of doing politics has probably changed. We might be able to learn something about that from that documentary.
JD: So, tonight’s the night of the screening, and I want to get some views from people who’ve attended in the past and hear what they think about tonight’s film. I ran into Lea and Natalie in the lobby and asked their opinion. What brought you out the cinema?
Lea: Yeah, I’d heard about this from the last event, and it sounded like something that I was particularly interested in, ‘cause I’m interested in Japanese culture. You know, a kimono takes a year to make and it takes about 5 hours to get on, so I’m quite interested to how long it would take to actually eat a kimono as well [laughter from all].
Natalie: Just in terms of feminism, I tend to see a lot of women’s films, read a lot of women authors, and that’s, that’s the way I like to get my feminist fix.
N: It’s really, sort of, a less self-conscious way, and, in a way that um, that just kind of shows women doing something pretty cool.
N:It’s kind of in the way that you would approach anything that you were interested in, or any, you know, something that you wanted to engaged with, I would tend to do it through the arts. Watch films with my friends, go to see bands that have a similar outlook to me. It’s a way of, like, engaging and supporting something.