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Angela Martin, „Chantal Akerman’s Films: A Dossier”

Feminist Review, No. 3 (1979), pp. 24-47 pdf

I’m a film-maker, but I won’t say I’m a feminist film-maker. Immediately you do an interview, they say – oh, you’re making a woman’s film. No, I’m not making women’s films, I’m making Chantal Akerman’s films. I didn’t decide to make films with feminist points or to change social structures; I decided to make films, to work in that medium, with that art. It so happens I’m a woman and aware of certain problems, but that isn’t my main concern in making movies. But, you know, the way I am feminist – to a certain extent – is that I’m very confident in my feelings about what I should do. I’m not someone who thinks that because I’m a woman my thoughts are less good. In that respect I can say I am feminist but not in others. I mean, sure, I think about all the obvious questions about women – like work and abortion. It’s certain that women are oppressed and I’m not unaware of it, but I didn’t feel it myself, because I started in a marginal way. Which means I wasn’t confronted with the system. I worked myself to put money together – in offices, coffee bars and things like that; I didn’t go to institutions or financial backers. I provided the money myself by working in another field, then working at night in the editing room, getting a camera for nothing, with £300, £100, £500 – that kind of budget. So with no money and no confrontation with the industry-just very marginal – I wasn’t ashamed to do it and I didn’t care whether anyone was interested or not.

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