Chanda Prescod-Weinstein Reviews Woman in Motion

Woman in Motion is streamable now on Paramount+ so if you don’t have a log in, maybe ask a friend who does if they’d like to host a movie night (inside or outside of course 😉)! In the meantime, we highly recommend Chanda Prescod-Weinstein’s thoughtful review on Astronomy:

Notably, the documentary does not discuss how many people fell into both categories, “women” and “minority.” This is a symptom of a larger production problem: Almost everyone who appears in the documentary besides Nichols herself is a man, and when women do appear, almost all of them are white. The total amount of on-screen speaking time for Black women who are not Nichols is under one minute. There are no non-Black women of color, either.

Nearly the entire production team also seems to have been men. This appears to be reflected in the storytelling, where we sit through descriptions of von Puttkamer’s comments on Nichols’s legs, as well as commentary from various astronauts and actors about how attractive they found her. At no point do we see new interview footage of a Black woman scientist or astronaut, though three have been to space. The absence of a conversation with the first — Mae Jemison — is especially notable because Jemison has credited Nichols with encouraging her to pursue a career as an astronaut.

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