ASAFilm, is the part of our website featuring short ethnographic films for general viewing from our 2009 film competition.

In our aim to make anthropological research relevant and more accessible to a wider public, the ASA has launched a new initiative to complement the Royal Anthropological Institute's longstanding efforts to promote visual anthropology as a means of extending ethnographic representation beyond text. Much of what we study as a discipline contains a strong visual component and film provides a highly appropriate vehicle for conveying rich and complex information. Our intention is to encourage greater awareness of ethnographic film and promote dialogue between anthropologists and a general viewing audience. The ASA encourages a wider distribution of ethnographic film in festivals, conferences, library holdings, course curricula and television programming. We are currently developing new visual anthropology strategies to further build on the ASA Film competition in 2009.

ASAFilm 2009 competition

The winner of the competition was Joanna Lai for her film 'In Motion'. Runners up were David Picard for his film 'Salama Vazaha (Hello Stranger)' and Edward Owles for his film 'Rig Life - Jacqui'. These films can be seen here. The winning films were screened at the 2009 RAI film festival.

Short documentary submissions were welcome from anthropologists and students of the discipline who employ film as a means of recording and communicating field research. Films of maximum five-minute duration and with clear ethnographic content were welcome. The ASA encouraged filmmaking of the highest quality as well as experimental films that challenge documentary conventions. Submissions could be stand-alone shorts or trailers for longer works.

All submissions were reviewed for approval by the ASA Committee and an editorial board, and abided by ASA ethical guidelines.

Accepted works were streamed on the ASAFilm site and on the ASA's channel on for an extended period. Visitors could express views and rate films by commenting on the pages.

Watch movies - see competition winners

Review board and editors

Read the submission guidelines

Other online film links