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A story of she: collective feminist film making at home (between Japan and Scotland).

Clarke, Jennifer; Duffy, Fionn; Grant, Rachel; Homma, Mei; Sakamoto, Natsumi; McWhinney, Sarah; Taki, Asako


Fionn Duffy

Rachel Grant

Mei Homma

Natsumi Sakamoto

Sarah McWhinney

Asako Taki


‘Speculative Fiction: Practicing Collectively’ is the title of the ongoing collective film practice, produced between different people and places, on screen, and in homes, in Scotland and Japan. Situated in critical feminist perspectives, the authors collective approach uses digital spaces as a platform for collaboration and co-learning opportunities, meant as explicitly feminist acts of sharing knowledge and ways of knowing, and mutual learning. In this contemporary moment when COVID-19 has forced the authors to “socially” distance, the online format and cross-cultural nature of the project supports such deliberate sharing practices, and their dialogue across disparate geographies and perspectives. The film is made of three sections, each of which has been produced in different constellations of collaboration, different ways of being together. It will be shown in its entirety at an exhibition at Tokyo Arts and Space in December 2020; the first section of the film, which you can view alongside this short article, was also exhibited online, via a Japanese art and cultural support project in August 2020. This first film was created collectively in response to a theme devised by Natsumi Sakamoto and Rachel Grant: attending to everyday labour, care, and gender roles at home. Sakamoto, a member of Back and Forth Collective, a transnational feminist artist collective founded in Tokyo, invited two Japanese artists from the collective. Duffy, Clarke and McWhinney were invited as artists based in Scotland. This article is also collectively written and edited. The film is still being produced, emerging through three stages of production. The central point of departure for our collaboration was the essay ‘The Carrier Bag Theory of Fiction’ (1986) by speculative feminist writer Ursula K. Le Guin. The first film involved the authors producing short films as individuals, with explicit instructions, to create a narrative around a fictional ‘she’ and to visualise it with film, animation, and performance documentation. This was followed by a lively discussion that addressed gender issues and stereotypes in Japan and the UK, including the controversies around women breastfeeding, motherhood, housework, childcare and care work, which remain too often invisible, un-paid, and undervalued. The following section presents diverse reflections on the key idea –home– in relation to the artists’ individual practices, their work, and/or the making of the first part of our film, which was made in the Spring of 2020, under lockdown. The final section addresses the collective nature of this ongoing experiment.


CLARKE, J., DUFFY, F., GRANT, R., HOMMA, M., SAKAMOTO, N., MCWHINNEY, S. and TAKI, A. 2020. A story of she: collective feminist film making at home (between Japan and Scotland). Entanglements [online], 3(2) pages 97-102. Available from:

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Nov 23, 2020
Online Publication Date Dec 6, 2020
Publication Date Dec 31, 2020
Deposit Date Dec 7, 2020
Publicly Available Date Dec 7, 2020
Journal Entanglements
Electronic ISSN 2516-5860
Publisher S-M. Nolas and C. Varvantakis
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 3
Issue 2
Pages 97-102
Keywords Feminist perspectives; Digital spaces; Knowledge sharing; Gender issues; Stereotypes; Japan; United Kingdom; Multimodal anthropology; Multimodal ethnography
Public URL
Publisher URL


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