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This September Cinenova is working with the 17th Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival 2021  (BFMAF) to present the newly digitised ‘Back Inside Herself’ (1984) by S. Pearl Sharp, alongside a response commission by poet and writer Sarah Lasoye.

Back Inside Herself (4 minutes, 1984, USA) Described by S. Pearl Sharp as “a visual poem on identity”, Back Inside Herself shows a Black woman finding her own sense of self and rejecting hegemonic societal expectations of who she should be and how she should behave. Featuring Barbara-O Jones (Daughters of the Dust).

Sarah Lasoye’s response commission is a piece of prose writing titled On the Inside, the writing engages with the question of what happens when the protagonist of S. Pearl Sharp’s film returns. It explores internal conversations, cycles of retreat, rest and self-preservation. 

The following events form part of a new Cinenova programme launching October 2021 titled The Work We Share – a programme of 10 newly digitised films from the Cinenova collection, captioned by Collective Text alongside 10 new artist response commissions, touring the UK throughout 2021-22. Full programme announcement coming soon!

There will be four events (online and physical) over the duration of BFMAF:

LIVE EVENT — 11 SEPTEMBER 2021, 16:15
Back Inside Ourselves – Workshop
Sarah Lasoye will be presenting ‘On the Inside’ in an in-person workshop. Booking essential and more information click here 

LIVE EVENT – 12 September 2021, 16:15
One Way or Another + Back Inside Herself
Maltings Main House
Watch the newly digitised ‘Back Inside Herself’ (1984) by S. Pearl Sharp shown alongside Sara Gómez’s “bold work of revolutionary feminism” ‘One Way or Another’ (1977). More information click here.

Essential Cinema: Back inside herself – S.Pearl Sharp in conversation with Sarah Lasoye
This programme features a 24-hour online screening of S. Pearl Sharp’s Back Inside Herself (US, 1984)
More information click here.

Image description: A black woman is sat down at a domestic desk by a window, with one hand resting behind her head and her other hand caressing a small sculpture of a female bust.


Sarah Lasoye is a poet and writer from London. She is an alumna of the Barbican Young Poets programme and a current member of Octavia – Poetry Collective for Women of Colour. Her debut chapbook, Fovea / Ages Ago, was published by Hajar Press in April 2021.

S. Pearl Sharp (1942, Ohio) is an award-winning filmmaker, writer, activist and actress based in Los Angeles. In the 60s she studied acting in New York and attended John O. Killens’ Writers Workshop at Columbia University. During her studies, she completed two volumes of poetry and her first play, The Sistuhs, in addition to forming the literary performance troupe Poets & Performers. Sharp then studied film production at Los Angeles City College. In her work, she uses the medium of film to address community issues. She is one of the co-founders of the Black Anti-Defamation Coalition, which directly challenged the entertainment industry on the Black image in the media, and edited the group’s newsletter, Media Matters. Her published written works include The Evening News – Essays And Commentaries From NPR and Other Clouds, Black Women For Beginners (non-fiction) and two poetry w/jazz CDs.