YEH FREEDOM LIFE (2018) with filmmaker Priya Sen: Block Museum - Northwestern University
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YEH FREEDOM LIFE (2018) with filmmaker Priya Sen

A colorful interior room with curtain draw, nearby are posters featuring women in sarees
Image credit: YEH FREEDOM LIFE
7 PM

Event Details

Date & Time:

Thu February 15, 2024
7 PM


The Block Museum of Art
40 Arts Circle Drive
Evanston, IL 60208


Open to the public



with filmmaker Priya Sen



In the Ambedkar Nagar district of South Delhi, working people pursue their dreams and aspirations amidst the constant activity of city life. Among those seeking fulfillment and love are
Sachi and Parveen, the subjects of Priya Sen’s moving, subtly expansive documentary YEH FREEDOM LIFE. Sachi, a beauty-parlor technician, claims the right to love another woman, even if that love is challenged by family and friends;  cigarette seller Parveen struggles to maintain romantic relationships with women who choose to marry men rather than live an openly queer life. Entering the homes and workplaces of ordinary people whose desires subvert social expectations, Sen adopts a patient form of observation that brings intersections of gender, age, and class into relief; roaming the bustling streets of Ambedkar Nagar, she conjures the urban polyphony from which their stories call out to us.

A 2023-2024 fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, director Priya Sen will appear in person following the screening for discussion.

About the artist:

Priya Sen is an independent filmmaker and artist who works across film and video, sound, and installation. Her work explores forms for tenuousness and ambiguity within realist documentary and simultaneously plays with narrative modes and cinematic gestures. She is interested in eclectic, itinerant, and egalitarian film forms and the manners of presence that accompany each work.

Sen’s latest film, No Stranger at All (2022), screened at the 73rd Berlinale, Forum Expanded 2023. Her work has previously screened at festivals and venues including the BFI London Film Festival, the Outfest Los Angeles LGBTQ Film Festival, Seoul International Women’s Film Festival, the Kitchen, LA Filmforum, Experimenta India, Images Festival, Dharamshala International Film Festival, the Kochi Muziris Biennale, and the Flaherty Film Seminar. She has been at artist residencies at Gasworks and Nottingham Contemporary, in the United Kingdom, and at Khoj, in New Delhi. Sen received an MA from Jamia Millia Islamia and an MFA in film and media arts from Temple University.

Presented with support from the Center for Global Culture and Communication, the Subcontinent Project and the MFA in Documentary Media at Northwestern. 

YEH FREEDOM LIFE is part of Block Cinema's Winter series, "Looking Carefully: New Observational Documentary," which brings together contemporary works of nonfiction cinema that depict, and enact, forms of care. 

Contact The Block Museum of Art for more information: (847) 491-4000 or email us at