chapter  8
12 Pages

Stories of precarious lives

ByJoanne Richardson

Precarious Lives is a feminist documentary from 2007-2008 that mixes archival footage of women's labour over the past century with ten portraits of Romanian women working in 2007 in different countries. The idea for the video arose after a previous collaboration with Candida TV from Italy, in which we began with the intention to research and document precarious work in Romania, but found that the concept of precarity, which had been imported from Western Europe, didn't find a genuine corresponding reality. Precarious Lives sought to challenge the dominant Western discourse about precarity and its disregard of gender and economic inequalities that still divided the first and third worlds of Europe. Although the economic situation in Romania has changed during the seven years since the video was made, the stories of the ten women in the documentary still offer compelling insights into both the differences and the similarities that exist across European borders.