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DVD Sale $295.00
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DVD Sale $89.00

Women, Waitressing and the Art of Service
A film by Maya Gallus
Canada, 2010, 58 minutes, Color, DVD, French/Japanese/English, Subtitled
Order No. W111043
Why do women bring your food at local diners, while in high-end establishments waiters are almost always men? DISH, by Maya Gallus, whose acclaimed
(2007) won Canada’s Gemini Award for documentary directing, answers this question in a delicious, well-crafted deconstruction of waitressing and our collective fascination with an enduring popular icon. Digging beyond the obvious, Gallus, who waited tables in her teens, explores diverse dynamics between food servers and customers, as well as cultural biases and attitudes they convey. Her feminist analysis climbs the socio-economic ladder—from the bustling world of lower-end eateries, where women prevail as wait staff, to the more genteel male-dominated sphere of haute cuisine. Astute, amusing observations from women on the job in Ontario’s truck stop diners, Montreal’s topless"sexy restos," a Parisian super-luxe restaurant, and Tokyo’s fantasy "maid cafés", as well as male customers’ telling comments, disclose how gender, social standing, earning opportunities, and working conditions intersect in the food service industry.

Canadian customers please purchase the film at dishdocumentary.com.


  • Hot Docs International Film Festival
  • Rencontres Internationales du Documentaire de Montréal
  • DOK Leipzig
  • Bergen International Film Festival, Norway
  • Cuenca International Film Festival, Ecuador
  • St. John’s International Women’s Film Festival, Canada
  • Vermont International Film Festival
  • Citizen Jane Film Festival

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    "Filled with sharp observations about the social dynamics of customer relations and workplace solidarity, the film should be an excellent starting point for discussions of gendered and class-stratified labor."
    Fran Michel
    Women & Gender Studies, Wilamette University

    "DISH delves into… gender, power, and the art of service… What’s revealed are the fantasies, desires, and prejudices projected onto women servers - including those of substitute wife, girlfriend, and personal servant."
    Hot Docs International Film Festival

    "Dish is a highlight of Hot Docs. Beautifully shot with a clear line of sight to point and purpose, fast-paced with impressive attention to detail." —
    XTRA Magazine

    “…a very successful film, conveying a lot of cross-cultural information while making a number of salient points of service, gender, and society.”
    David Eller
    Anthropology Review Database

    “Recommended. Offer[s] an interesting glimpse of social and economic factors within the restaurant world.”
    Video Librarian

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    Dish is included in the following Special Collections.
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WMM offers film collections on a variety of specific subject areas, including the collections VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN: Ending the Silence, BODY IMAGE, and AFRICAN-AMERICAN: Celebrate the Lives of African-American Women.

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Women Make Movies is a multicultural, multiracial, non-profit media arts organization which facilitiates the production, promotion, distribution, and exhibition of independent films and videotapes by and about women. contact us