Documenting the Documentary: Close Readings of Documentary Film and Video, New and Expanded Edition

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Wayne State University Press, Dec 16, 2013 - Performing Arts - 600 pages
Originally released in 1998, Documenting the Documentary responded to a scholarly landscape in which documentary film was largely understudied and undervalued aesthetically, and analyzed instead through issues of ethics, politics, and film technology. Editors Barry Keith Grant and Jeannette Sloniowski addressed this gap by presenting a useful survey of the artistic and persuasive aspects of documentary film from a range of critical viewpoints. This new edition of Documenting the Documentary adds five new essays on more recent films in addition to the text of the first edition. Thirty-one film and media scholars, many of them among the most important voices in the area of documentary film, cover the significant developments in the history of documentary filmmaking from Nanook of the North (1922), the first commercially released documentary feature, to contemporary independent film and video productions like Werner Herzog's Grizzly Man (2005) and the controversial Borat (2006). The works discussed also include representative examples of many important national and stylistic movements and various production contexts, from mainstream to avant-garde. In all, this volume offers a series of rich and revealing analyses of those "regimes of truth" that still fascinate filmgoers as much today as they did at the very beginnings of film history. As documentary film and visual media become increasingly important ways for audiences to process news and information, Documenting the Documentary continues to be a vital resource to understanding the genre. Students and teachers of film studies and fans of documentary film will appreciate this expanded classic volume.
 

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Contents

Robert Flahertys Nanook of the North
1
Dziga Vertovs Man with a Movie Camera
19
Sergei Eisensteins Que viva México as Ethnography
35
The Dialectical Imperative of Luis Buñuels Las Hurdes
51
Basil Wrights Song of Ceylon
64
Leni Riefenstahls Triumph of the Will
81
Persuasion and Expression in The Plow That Broke the Plains and The City ...
103
Joris Ivenss The Spanish Earth
122
Michael Rubbos Daisy The Story of a Facelift
322
Satirizing Masculinity in This Is Spinal Tap
339
Ross McElwees Shermans March
356
Bill Violas I Do Not Know What It Is I Am Like
368
Truth History and The Thin Blue Line
385
Michael Moores Roger Me
404
Expressions of Race in Tongues Untied
424
Performance in Paris Is Burning
438

Humphrey Jennings and Listen to Britain
141
Georges Franjus Blood of the Beasts
159
Covert Conversations in Les maîtres fous
178
Terror and Memory in Alain Resnaiss Night and Fog
196
Peter Watkinss Culloden
217
American Cinema Verité and Dont Look Back
237
Frederick Wisemans Titicut Follies
253
Solanas and Getinos The Hour of the Furnaces
271
Stan Brakhages The Act of Seeing with Ones Own Eyes
287
Style and Narrative in An American Family
305
Camille Billops and James Hatchs Finding Christa
456
The Politics of the Documentary Interview
475
The Radical Modesty of Agnès Vardas Les glaneurs et la glaneuse
494
Lessons on Sound Cinema and Mortality from Werner Herzogs Grizzly Man ...
507
31 Cultural Learnings of Borat for Make Benefit Glorious Study of Documentary
522
Bibliography
543
Contributors
549
Index
557
BackCover
572
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About the author (2013)

Barry Keith Grant is professor of film studies in the Department of Communication, Popular Culture and Film at Brock University in Ontario, Canada. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, he is the author or editor of numerous books, including Voyages of Discovery: The Cinema of Frederick Wiseman, 100 Documentary Films (with Jim Hillier) and Shadows of Doubt: Negotiations of Masculinity in American Genre Films (Wayne State University Press, 2011). Jeannette Sloniowski is associate professor in the Department of Communication, Popular Culture and Film and the graduate program in popular culture at Brock University. Her publications include Canadian Communications: Issues in Contemporary Media and Culture, Detecting Canada: Essays on Canadian Detective Fiction, Candid Eyes: Essays on Canadian Documentaries, and Slippery Pastimes: A Canadian Popular Reader.

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