Show Less
Restricted access

Between Categories

The Films of Margaret Tait: Portraits, Poetry, Sound and Place


Sarah Neely

Margaret Tait – filmmaker, photographer, poet, painter, essayist and short story writer – is one of the UK’s most unique and remarkable filmmakers. She was the first female filmmaker to create a feature-length film in Scotland (Blue Black Permanent, 1992). Although for most of her career Tait remained focused on the goal of making a feature-length film, her most notable and groundbreaking work was arguably as a producer of short films. The originality of her work, and its refusal to accept perceived barriers of genre, media and form, continues to inspire new generations of filmmakers.

This book aims to address the lack of sustained attention given to Tait’s large body of work, offering a contextualisation of Tait’s films within a general consideration of Scottish cinema and artists’ moving image. Furthermore, the book’s grounding in detailed archival research offers new insights into Scotland (and Britain) in the twentieth century, relating to a diverse range of subjects and key figures, such as John Grierson, Forsyth Hardy, Hugh MacDiarmid, Lindsay Anderson and Michael Powell.

Show Summary Details
Restricted access



Aitken, I. (1998). The Documentary Film Movement: an Anthology. Edinburgh: University of Edinburgh Press.

Allen, D. (1982). ‘Workers’ Films: Scotland’s hidden film culture’. In C. McArthur (ed.), Scotch Reels: Scotland in Cinema and Television. London: British Film Institute, pp. 93–9.

Aurand, U. (2012). Susan+Lisbeth, programme notes, accessed 10 December 2015.

Balazs, B. (1985). ‘Theory of the Film Sound’. In E. Weis and J. Belton (eds), Theory and Practice: Film Sound. New York: Columbia University Press, pp. 116–25.

Barthes, R. (1981). Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography, trans. R. Howard. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Beugnet, M. and Ezra, E. (2009). ‘A portrait of the 21st century’, Screen. 50 (1), pp. 77–86.

Bingham, D. (2010). Whose Lives are They Anyway: The Biopic as Contemporary Film Genre. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press.

Blaetz, R. (2006). ‘Rescuing The Fragmentary Evidence of Women’s Experimental Film’, Camera Obscura. 21 (3), pp. 153–6.

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.

Do you have any questions? Contact us.

Or login to access all content.