Link Pack // Best Girl Grip Episode 93: Jemma Desai

I don’t usually provide extracurricular reading beyond a podcast because making time for the podcast episode itself can feel like a stretch. But in this interview Jemma references a lot of her own work, as well as lots of other people’s and considering the brilliance of that work, I wanted to collate it all in one place (along with some of my own reading recommendations) in case you felt inspired to do some homework.

Jemma is is a writer, researcher and curator based in London, currently completing a PhD on practices of freedom in the arts. Most recently she was Head of Programming at the Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival and she has also held positions at the BFI London Film Festival, British Council and Independent Cinema Office. She is also the founder of a curatorial initiative called I Am Dora and is a fellow of the Clore Leadership programme. 

We talk about a myriad of things including her role as programmer and her ambivalence around that label, community, colonialism, the need to redefine or abolish the idea of linear progression, what leadership means to her, and why she hopes it will be dismantled, the issues at the heart of campaigns like #MeToo and #OscarsSoWhite, how to structurally enable care, out of office emails, embracing possibility and joy and much much more. 

The episode can be listened to here…


Jemma’s Work

Things Jemma talks about in the podcast

Reading & viewing recommendations

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