Elena-Maria Dirstaru

IT Student Assistant
Innovation and Technology Solutions - Technology for People and Place
Vodcasting Assistant
Innovation and Technology Solutions - Technology for People and Place
 Elena-Maria Dirstaru



Elena is a documentary filmmaker and a research student at the University of Essex, studying towards getting a PhD in Film with Creative Practice. Her first film, Bethnal Green (2012) tells the story of the 1943 London tube disaster, focusing on the stories of two survivors. Her second film, Monashay (2013) is a documentary that focuses on the lives of Roma women living in rural Romania. The project applied Feminist Film theory to practice and had an intersectional approach to the representation of the lives of the people on screen, being primarily concerned with foregrounding the influence the means of representation can have on the construction of an identity outside of the dominant hegemonic culture. She is currently working on her third documentary film which focuses on womens rights in Nepal. The film follows the feminisation of a national trauma, documenting the effect the civil war had on women and how womens lives are shaped by political instability and cultural norms that place them in domestic roles, documenting activists roles in Nepali society, as well as the personal stories of women living in rural Nepal.


  • BA Film and Creative Writing (Essex), MA Film Studies (Essex)

Research and professional activities


Interviewing the interviewee: an interdisciplinary approach to the documentary interview

Supervisor:  John Haynes



Colchester Campus