My Babushka: Searching Ukrainian Identities

This video documentary centers on the questions of civil liberties and cultural differences in a society beginning to open as one woman searches for her own ethnic roots, identity and family history in Ukraine. Issues of human rights, anti-Semitism, homophobia, feminism and a divided and economically-depressed country are encountered as I, a feminist activist and pioneer of lesbian cinema, return to a “homeland” full of struggling as people search for a new post-glasnost identity.

I found old political, societal and cultural barriers collapsing but without new ones to replace them. In this time of flux, there remains much conflict over the establishment of fixed points of social reference in Ukraine. That makes this tape in its search for personal and national identity even more compelling for Ukrainians, a general audience, and the many, many North Americans and Western Europeans who are from a Central European heritage.

53 min., Color/Sound. (2001)

The website of visual artist and filmmaker Barbara Hammer. View clips, read synopses and information about the films, and purchase DVDs.