Have You Ever Killed a Bear? or Becoming Jamila

Marwa Arsanios

This video is no longer available

Marwa Arsanios, Have You Ever Killed a Bear? or Becoming Jamila (still), 2014.

Staff picks Have You Ever Killed a Bear? or Becoming Jamila
Marwa Arsanios

25 Minutes

Staff Picks

April 12–May 9, 2021

Join us on e-flux Video & Film for an online screening of Marwa Arsanios’s Have You Ever Killed a Bear? or Becoming Jamila (2014), on view from Monday, April 12 through Sunday, May 9, 2021. The film is presented as part of the monthly series Staff picks.

Have You Ever Killed a Bear? or Becoming Jamila is a video made after a performance whose starting point is an inquiry into Algerian freedom fighter Jamila Bouhired. The research focuses on the different representations of Jamila in cinema, as well as on her assimilation and promotion in the Egyptian cultural magazine Al-Hilal (The Crescent) during the 1960s and ’70s. The video also attempts to look at the history of Egyptian socialist projects and the Algerian anti-colonial wars, and the way they have promoted and marginalized feminist projects through the figure of Jamila. Indeed, the clear gender division used to marginalize women in the public sphere was overcome for a short moment during the Algerian war of independence—Jamila becoming its icon. But what does it mean to become an icon, and to play the role of the freedom fighter? Between role playing and political projects, where does the agency of subject constitution sit?

For more information, contact program@e-flux.com.

Feminism, Film, Performance
Revolution, Video Art, History, Libraries & Archives
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Marwa Arsanios is an artist, filmmaker, and researcher who reconsiders the politics of the mid-twentieth century from a contemporary perspective, with a particular focus on gender relations, urbanism, and industrialization. She approaches research collaboratively and seeks to work across disciplines. She is cofounder of 98weeks Research Project, and is currently a PhD candidate at the Akademie der bildenden Kunst in Vienna.

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