International Videoletters: Washington, D.C. (January 1976) & Rochester (March 1976)

Two videoletters made by women's collectives, covering a women's martial arts conference and a women's basketball team in Washington, D.C., and the "New Women's Times" newspaper in Rochester, NY.

00:27Copy video clip URL Onscreen text: “Wash., D.C. Jan. ’76.” Nina Simone’s “New World Coming” plays on the soundtrack. Significant distortion. 

00:58Copy video clip URL The narrator introduces the “Second Continental Teachers’ Conference of Women in the Martial Arts and Self-Defense, taking place in Washington, D.C., the weekend of January 8 through the 11th.” Dim, distorted footage of women practicing martial arts. A conversation with an organizer of the conference about the aims of the conference and the interests of the attendees. 

01:55Copy video clip URL The make-up of the conference attendees, who have come from across North America and who are trained in a variety of martial arts. A demonstration of judo techniques by students. 

05:12Copy video clip URL Lois Jankowski, sports reporter, interviews the all-women Llamas basketball team before their game with a team from the Navy. 

05:34Copy video clip URL Team captain Mary Farmer speaks about the game. 

06:25Copy video clip URL Footage from the game. 

07:11Copy video clip URL A conversation about increasing awareness of laws dictating equal treatment of women that governments around the world are violating. Defining “political prisoner.” Justifications for arresting women for ideological reasons in Indonesia, in Spain. 

09:40Copy video clip URL Political prisoners in the United States. Joan Little.

10:32Copy video clip URL A close-up of the June 15, 1975 edition of New Women’s Times, published in Rochester, NY: “the hometown of Susan B. Anthony.” A monologue: “A woman trying to make it alone in this society is news. A married woman trying to make a marriage work is news. A woman filing a sex discrimination case is news. A woman who has become a plumber is news. A woman who feels her life has been unconditionally programmed is news. All women are newsworthy. All women make news. As Rochester’s All Women’s Newspaper, we plan to print all the news that is fit for print for women. Women are the majority in this country and yet it takes a magnifying glass to find out about us in the available media. Now we plan to begin our own archives in years to come. Our children and grandchildren will be able to look up our own herstory as told by ourselves. But why a new newspaper? Rather than working within the established media? 100 years ago in Rochester, New York, Susan B. Anthony answered this best. Just as long newspapers and magazines are controlled by men, every women among them must write articles which are reflections of men’s ideas. As long as that continues, women’s ideas and deepest convictions will never get before the public…”

12:55Copy video clip URL The Rochester Women’s Video Collective interviews Maxine Sobel of the New Women’s Times. Sobel discusses the process of founding the newspaper and the current staff of more than 60 women, ranging from teenagers to retirees, “and we have radical feminists, lesbians, suburban housewives, secretaries, you name it.” “The whole range of womanhood.” An inclusive approach to feminist philosophies within the publication. The freedom for women to express their own opinions, whatever they may be. 

15:57Copy video clip URL The response in Rochester to the publication. Letters to the editor. The difficulty in finding advertisers when so few businesses are owned by women. Rochester being “almost a complete reactionary city” despite the rich history of prominent feminists from the area. 

18:30Copy video clip URL A woman mechanic who became a regular contributor writing articles about cars and car care. Attracting contributors from the community. 

19:01Copy video clip URL Running a series of columns on sexual assault. Finding women to discuss the issues from a range of perspectives. 

19:30Copy video clip URL The standard structure of each issue. Giving adequate space to “feedback.” Other contributors and staff speak about the newspaper. Writing about issues most important to them personally: daycare, marital problems, social problems. Not feeling like all women need to have the same views. 

21:49Copy video clip URL An old man goes over his finances with a young woman. Discussion of government assistance. 




You can be the first one to leave a comment.

Leave a Comment


Copyright © 2024 Media Burn Archive.
Media Burn Archive | 935 W Chestnut St Suite 405 Chicago IL 60642
(312) 964-5020 | [email protected]