We’re happy to announce the publication of BioScope vol. 11. no. 1.
This special issue is a step towards mapping a different landscape. It features filmmakers from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Pakistan working in fiction and, in a few instances, documentary cinema, with feature-length and short films. The focus and scope are resolutely contemporary and pan-South Asian, foregrounding directors who emerged from the early 2000s and where the term ‘regional cinema’ refers not, as is habitually the case in discussions of Indian cinema, to films in an Indian language other than Hindi, but to the variety of cinemas made in the countries that make up South Asia, as defined by the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) and People’s SAARC. We use the term ‘region’ here much in the way it applies in histories of Chinese, Arab, African or Latin American cinemas, to demarcate a geographical area that, while inhabited by diverse linguistic, ethnic and religious communities, shares a history of British colonial occupation. In this sense, regional cinema points to a cluster of national cinemas that have to contend with Hindi cinema’s invasive operation, both legitimate and pirate. However, as we hope it will become apparent from both the essays and the interviews included in the Fieldwork section of this issue, neither Bollywood nor Hindi cinema delimit the channels which connect contemporary women filmmakers across South Asia.
Introduction: Why a Special Issue on Women’s Cinema?
Behind the Scenes: The Women Filmmakers of New Pakistani Cinema