'Feminists: What Were They Thinking?' A story told through photographs

The Netflix documentary is becoming a trend, being fashion its central theme

'Feminists: What Were They Thinking?' A story told through photographs

Feminists: What Were They Thinking? The latest Netflix documentary that aims to capture the spirit of an era by returning to its images. Its premiere was on October 12 of this year and after two weeks on the streaming platform has already given something to talk about. Here we tell you what is going to encourage you to see it.

Leer en español: “Feministas: ¿qué estaban pensando?” Una historia contada a través de fotografías



What is it?

According to the synopsis of IMDB, a website specialized in film premieres, "In 1977, a photo book captured an awakening: women shed the cultural restrictions of their childhood and embrace their complete humanity." Feminists: What Were They Thinking? revisit those photos, those women and those times and point to our current culture, very vividly rebelling the urgent need for continuous change."

Thus, this documentary that Netflix brings today tries to revive a time of awakening of women, tries to understand what went through the heads of these women who in the years of the 1970s seem to have emerged from a long dream and have awakened to a reality , to their own reality, which showed them the urgency of a struggle for their own lives, the lives of women.

In this way, Netflix reveals a wave of new thoughts that occurred in a moment and relives that precise moment in conversation with those who participated in it. This documentary that lasts an hour and a half, is something like a time machine that will transport the viewer to another time, at the time in which this awakening happened.

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And it does it?

The viewer can make this journey to other times through the study of a photographic archive around which the documentary revolves. "In the mid-70s, photographer Cynthia McAdams asked me if I could take a picture for her book, she said that she thought women looked different because of feminism and wanted to see if that difference was evident in the photos," says one voiceover at the beginning of the documentary. What this film is looking for then is to go back to that moment and see if, in effect, the difference is noticed.

This is, without a doubt, another way of studying feminism, through images. The documentary, then, focuses on this question that was asked more than 50 years ago by photographer Cynthia McAdams: can we see feminism? Beyond the words and speeches, this documentary is concerned about the appearance of this movement that is now worldwide. How do free women look? Did feminism change women? Did he make them what we are today?

To answer these questions, the documentary takes a tour of the artist's photographic archive and interviews some of the photographers, women who were young in the 1970s and who now see young women and live in a different world of his youth.

Then, who participate?

Among the interviewed are:

  • Jane Fonda: Actress, writer, and blogger, this woman was already 40 years old (she is now 80) when in 1977 the photographer began with the realization of her book. Thus, this actress could see with maturity the feminist movement that took place during this decade and compare it with current feminisms.
  • Gloria Steinem: Activist and writer. Since always very close to the feminist movement, this journalist was also already an adult in the 70s. She was a strong member of many feminist movements and claimants of race during the 60s and 70s. She is considered the author of some speeches and opinion columns that they shaped what many call the second wave of feminism. Together with Jane Fonda, she has an organization called Women's Media Center, which is responsible for giving visibility to women in the media.
  • Lily Tomlin: co-stars with Jane Fonda the Netflix series Grace and Frankie. She talks about what it was like to be a young woman in the middle of the birth of this wave of feminism in the United States.
  • Judy Chicago: She is an American painter, an important representative of the seventies feminist movement in art. She became famous for her work The Dinner Party, in which she gathered tableware for women who had changed history for her.

All these women who belonged to a movement and who help to relive that moment of explosion of thought and liberation meet in this documentary to talk about issues of gender, identity, race, abortion, and motherhood. It is perfect for those who want another look on this subject and for those who want to spend a time of nostalgia for another time.

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LatinAmerican Post | Juliana Rodríguez Pabón

Translated from: '“Feministas: ¿qué estaban pensando?” Una historia contada a través de fotografías'

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