It is often said that all television is documentary because television reflects what we are doing and thinking and, perhaps, hoping. But in a direct sense, BBC Television produces two kinds of documentary: the dramatic document and the feature based on the facts of real life. In the past ten years viewers have seen many vital subjects dealt with in a documentary way, from the colour bar to foot-and-mouth disease. And they have given these programmes high praise. Documentary can combine studio, film, and outside broadcast facilities. By their very nature such programmes take a long time to prepare and mount. Behind them are weeks of writing and investigation. For a documentary must be accurate and, in the finished product, it must be telling.
Documentary turns its attention to women – in the first instance to look at Women Alone and in the second to report on her work for the community.
The nurse (below) is in San Salvador; and her role was part of The World is Ours series of filmed documents, produced in co-operation with the United Nations.