17th World Congress of the IUAES

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General Organization Tracks and Panels Plenary Sessions Visual Anthropology Exhibitions Meetings Social Events This congress is sponsored by:

Evolving humanity, emerging worlds
Display as: List Tree Views: All Panels All Tracks Plenaries Panels Being Human General Life and death Producing the Earth Survival and extinction The world of the mind and the mind in the world Movement, mobility and migration Other Museums Visual Authors Convenors

Manchester, UK; 5th-10th August 2013
(V01) Visual encounters: audiovisual approaches to anthropological knowledge Location Chemistry G.54 Date and Start Time 07 Aug, 2013 at 09:00

Convenors
Martha-Cecilia Dietrich (University of Manchester) email Ines Ponte (University of Manchester) email Luciana Lang (University of Manchester) email Flavia Kremer (University of Manchester) email Mail All Convenors

Short Abstract
This panel explores how audiovisual methods are being used in contemporary research and what insights such use may bring to anthropologically informed research questions. We invite discussions concerned with ethics, representation, and with the distinctive knowledge produced by audiovisual means.

Long Abstract
The purpose of this panel is to explore the contributions of visual anthropology to elucidate socio-cultural anthropological concerns. Photography, film and sound recording devices have been of great importance in the development of the discipline as a whole. The works of Bronislaw Malinowiski, Margareth Mead, Gregory Bateson and Claude Levi-Strauss explored the use of the image in its moving and static forms, while Jean Rouch's ethnofictions experimented with the camera as a tool for reflexivity. Moreover, contributions that questioned the notion of anthropology as a 'discipline of words' have given emphasis to the impact of (audio-)visual research in contemporary anthropological enquiries. The aim of our panel is to explore how audiovisual methods are being used in contemporary research and what insights and debates such use may bring to anthropologically informed research questions. The fact that video, photographic cameras and sound recording equipment are becoming more and more accessible to anthropologists, as well as to their subject groups, is a feature in contemporary research creating interesting dynamics and posing new challenges in terms of ethics and representation. Audiovisual explorations in the field also enabled researchers, such as David MacDougall (among others), to investigate sensorial and corporeal forms of understanding, turning visual anthropology into a field of scientific research with its distinctive methods and epistemological assessments. We are inviting contributions that explore the use of audio-visual media in research whilst providing significant insights to general anthropological debates.

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This panel is closed to new paper proposals.

Papers
A way of seing is a way of not-seing: The Yunnan & Vietnam Community Based Visual Education and Communication ( CBV) Project 2006-2009 Author: Karsten Krueger (Shantou University) email Mail All Authors

Short Abstract
Since the 1980s/1990s, Indigenous filmmaking and Community based Video ( Visual) Education Projects are becoming more and more the focus of media activities by Indigenous ethnic groups as part of their struggle against hegemonic media representations of their own culture.In China these activities were completely missing, until very recently. This paper introduces the The Yunnan & Vietnam Community Based Visual Education and Communication ( CBV) Project 2006-2009, the first of its kind in China.

Long Abstract
Since the 1980s/1990s, Indigenous filmmaking and Community based Video ( Visual) Education Projects are becoming more and more the focus of media activities by Indigenous ethnic groups as part of their struggle against hegemonic media representations of their own culture.Over more than two decades,anthropologists, communication scholars, documentary filmmakers and indigenous media activists have started to work together with local indigenous groups and communities,to technically support and to develop a common platform for human rights and indigenous rights advocacy and to develop indigenous filmmaking activities.Until very recently Indigenous filmmaking activities and Community based Visual Education and Communication projects were completely absent amongst China's "National Minorities".Scholarly work on these indigenous media projects in China was also completely inexistant. This paper tries to fill this gap by introducing the Yunnan & Vietnam Community Based Visual Education and Communication ( CBV) Project 2006-2009 the first of its kind in China. All Rites Reversed: Paradox and Catharsis in Visual Anthropology Author: Andy Lawrence (University of Manchester) email Mail All Authors

Short Abstract
I will look specifically at the role filmmaking has in representing paradox in human lived experience and how this contributes to a cathartic moment for the audience whereby understanding can exist without over-rationalisation and the elimination of ambiguity as it is lived.

Long Abstract
I am a documentary film-maker and lecturer in Visual Anthropology working on subjects of childbirth, death, journeys and transformation. I have also made films about juvenile delinquency, poverty, nationalism, addiction and love. My film-making is concerned with the ways human beings evolve a sense of understanding in a world they know and how they cope with existential uncertainties in the pursuit of wellbeing and knowledge. The knowledge we create can seem essential to us, yet graveyards throughout the world are stacked with bodies of indispensable knowledge. The paradox of our lives does seem to be that we die. How are people's lives affected by knowledge of, or conversely, a lack of knowledge of, Other's momentous entries into, and exits from, the world we experience? And what is the impact on society of such knowledge? I will present an analysis of the interplay I have made between method and subject; how we conceptualise birth and death and how an understanding and a representation of this arises from the filmmaking process. In many ways this presents a re-thinking of visual anthropology in light of new movements in mainstream anthropology, and new production technologies and tools in filmmaking. I will discuss how catharsis develops for a film's audience through a perceived proximity to the subjects. In unpacking this tightly compressed process I will look at two broad and important questions: What makes modern filmmaking relevant to the study of anthropology? And what methods separate anthropological filmmaking from other genres? Can Film Show the Visible?:The Filming of Hunters in West Africa Author: Agnieszka Kedzierska-Manzon (Université Toulouse le Mirail) email Mail All Authors

Short Abstract
My paper aims to question whether—and how—cinematographic images can make tangible a lived experience of the human-animal encounter in hunting. To this end, my footage recorded among the Mande (West Africa) as well as ethnographic and commercial films, will be marshaled as evidence.

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Long Abstract
When I started my research among the Mande hunters, almost no audiovisual documentation on the topic was available. During my subsequent field trips, I tried to fill this gap and recorded many hours of footage. I then edited it, adding commentary and forging it into a single, coherent narrative - a short ethnographic film . It constituted an annex to my doctoral dissertation. My research focused on the corporeal dimensions of the hunting practices, this audiovisual support of my hypotheses seemed therefore essential. Yet, I quickly realized that its problematic technical quality—the consequence of the conditions of its recording, including insufficient or overabundant light and the fact that the search of game was characterized by a strong mobility and unpredictability —rendered it virtually unintelligible. The next step for me consisted in a series of collaborations with professional filmmakers, resulting in a film on the hunters for French television. From these experiences, which inevitably involved an important amount of staging, I became somehow skeptical. Less in terms of the cinematographic or photographic images' possibility "to show the invisible," the issue recently examined by Willerslev and Suhr and debated for quite some time by anthropologists. Rather, I started to question the capacity of these images, even when handled by the masters such as Rouch or Marshall, to remain truth to the visible, to make tangible a lived experience of hunting. This paper intends to address, through sharing of my personal involvement with audiovisual media contextualized within the larger anthropological frame, this problem. Class, caste and gender: social worlds revealed through visual research Author: Nivedita Ghosh (University of Delhi) email Mail All Authors

Short Abstract
This paper argues that the camera has the potential to explicate the boundaries of the social world in which the researcher finds herself. Based on video research attempted in three distinct sites in India, the paper presents an analysis of the interaction between gender, class and caste norms revealed through the use of camera in the field.

Long Abstract
The use of audio-visual tools in the anthropological practice of fieldwork has seen a considerable growth over the years. The camera however is hardly a tool that can be unilaterally used in just about any social scenario. A deeper analysis reveals that the camera has the potential to explicate the boundaries of the social world in which the researcher finds herself. Significantly, these are the boundaries of gender, class, caste, religion and the larger norms and values held by the community being researched. Accordingly, some sites, some people, some interviews, some topics etc. become less or more recordable than others. The nature of data gathered by the researcher through the camera thus depends upon several factors other than the phase of research or the rapport built by the researcher. This paper thus presents a study of the interaction between gender, class and caste norms revealed through the use of camera in the field. The study is derived from three distinct sites from the states of Rajasthan and Gujarat in India, where video-based research was attempted. A richer understanding of this interaction was attainable through an enquiry into the network of relation between the researcher, the setting, the people who were filmed/not filmed, photographed/not photographed and so on. Ethnographic film - from representing reality to anthropological fictions. Author: Mihai Andrei Leaha (Babes Bolyai University of Cluj Napoca) email Mail All Authors

Short Abstract
The paper explores the ways in which ethnographic film as a border discipline between anthropology and cinema created it’s path for epistemological legitimation in relation to the concept of ,,reality” and it’s way of representing it.

Long Abstract
"When I am with anthropologists, they consider me as a filmmaker, when I am with filmmakers they consider me as an anthropologist." (Robert Gardner interviewing Jean Rouch in 1980) The paper discusses ethnographic film as a border genre positioned between anthropology and cinema, regarded here as two institutional and critical/aesthetical modes of representing reality. The debate over the hybrid composition of the term ethnographic film, created several methodological trends such as: observational; participatory; reflexive; collaborative; sensory modes of doing anthropological work with film. In each case the quest for legitimating a new field of anthropological inquiry, that uses the aesthetically dominated medium of cinema, produced specific kind of theory and waves of practitioners which tend to have an anthropologically aware way of using film and media. The field of visual anthropology, imbedded in epistemological assumptions about the issue of anthropological representation came a long way from the Margaret Mead's salvage anthropology to MacDougall's view of independence from the principle of scientific validity of ethnographic film. In my opinion the core concept that stood at the base of paradigm shifts in our field was the way in which authors relate to the concept of "reality" and the means and meanings of representing/interpret it.

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The fictional turn in postmodern theory, opened up new possibilities of interpreting "reality" as a possible world or in our case as anthropological fictions. The paper explores this path of ethnographic film and it's relation with constructing anthropological knowledge. Gender Difference and Social Change among the Bororo: exploring and creating visual histories as a means of producing knowledge. Author: Flavia Kremer (University of Manchester) email Mail All Authors

Short Abstract
This paper analyzes the making of a documentary film with Bororo people following the screening of six classical films made about them since 1917. Building on twelve months fieldwork the paper explores how visual methods were beneficial to investigate the under-explored relationship between gender difference and social change in the Amazonian region.

Long Abstract
This paper analyses a research experiment realized with the Bororo people of Central Brazil. Wishing to understand how Bororo women and men experience and interpret social change, the study focused on the investigation of the spatial transformations on the moral topographies of the Bororo village plan. The Bororo village holds a distinctive place in anthropological literature for it represents both a source and the proving ground of key anthropological concepts, in particular in relation to Lévi-Straussian structuralism. Using film elicitation and film-making methods, this study created a space for debate with Bororo people who analyzed their visual history in relation to the current moral topographies of the village plan. The paper analyzes a research experiment of screening six classical films made about Bororo people since 1917 and discussing the relationships between gender difference and historical change. In addition to the use of film elicitation methods, this study explored film-making methods to create visual history with Bororo people. The paper describes the film-making process and analyzes local debates about how Bororo people should be represented in contemporary films. Building on twelve months fieldwork, the paper explores how the use of film-elicitation and filmmaking methods have been beneficial to an investigation of the under-explored relationship between gender difference and social change in the Amazonian region. Issues in filming in the first person among the donsow of Burkina Faso Author: Lorenzo Ferrarini (University of Manchester) email Mail All Authors

Short Abstract
I reflect on the methodological and representational issues I had to deal with filming my own apprenticeship of donsoya, the initiatory knowledge on hunting. Themes touched include the representation of bodily experience, the role of reconstruction and authenticity, collaborative filming.

Long Abstract
Introducing his film Tourou et Bitti, Jean Rouch described it as an experiment in filming in the first person. Forty years later I found myself reinterpreting the same idea, during my research on the donsow of Western Burkina Faso, an initiatory hunting society. Studying donsow meant becoming part of the society, sharing practical activities, experiencing apprenticeship, learning hunting and magic. This reflected in a film project which aimed at representing an apprenticeship of donsoya from my own point of view, which brought to the surface a number of problems which are the subject of this paper. In the first place, how to represent experience, in its sensory and bodily aspects, and how to give the sense of a subjective point of view. I plan to address the technical and poetic solutions I recurred to, drawing from the work of Jean Rouch and Steven Feld. I also had to deal with the long-dating schizophrenia between the role of observer and participant, which very practically translated into the impossibility of filming certain situations in which I was too deeply involved. This brings me to reflect on the role of reconstruction in the film and to problematise experience and its supposed authenticity and immediateness. Finally, I will describe how I tried to compensate the subjectivity of my point of view through a methodology based on collaboration in the conception of the film, screening and editing of the footage in the field and the subjects performing for the camera. Mythology on film: dramatic anthropology Author: Carolyn Macdonald email Mail All Authors

Short Abstract
Indigenous-produced fictional, docu-drama and stylised documentary films have successfully treated the experiential elements of an oral tradition based mythology. This paper looks at how this can inform anthropological, including anthropological film, approaches to mythology.

Long Abstract
The growing Indigenous cinema movement in Australia and internationally has seen the production of a series of Indigenous-produced fictional, docu-drama and stylised documentary representations of mythological story. This paper

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looks at how these cinematic representations can be anthropologically informative as well as how the filmic medium, including fictional approaches, may be particularly suitable as an anthropological research tool in the treatment of mythology. Drawing on theories of sensory anthropology in relation to both film and mythology, I will look at how an experiential understanding of mythology - in Indigenous communities with oral traditions- may be anthropologically informative and how this experiential understanding of mythology may be best conveyed and explored through film. This paper will reference a number of films emanating from Indigenous Australia as well as my own attempts to record mythology as an ethnographic filmmaker working in Indigenous Australia. Post-production as photography's semantics Author: Massimiliano Fusari (University of Exeter) email Mail All Authors

Short Abstract
What is post-production? How does it work? How can it re-arrange a visual signifier to its signifieds? Through practical case-studies, the paper focuses on how post-production as a semantic practice can lead to a more articulated practice in visual anthropology.

Long Abstract
This contribution focuses on how post-production as a semantic practice can generate more articulated visual representations for research in anthropology. Within the present context, post-production is assessed as a methodology incorporating any aesthetic-inspired practice to reinforce intended over aberrant meaning production, and positively impact any visual-led anthropology: by questioning what the photograph is and evokes, post-production can lead to open up spaces for social engagement and profound dialogical interaction, and eventually suggest innovative semantic practices. I am aware that post-production, by consciously altering the recorded "real," questions the same basis of visual anthropology. However, by preferring the interrogative dimension of photography to its narrative one, I intend to encourage more nuanced approaches to the established anthropological dismissal of post-production as an ambiguous communicative element, while offering a comprehensive and innovative re-appreciation of its sociological performative dimension. Through a practical assessment on my latest ethnographies on the Shi'a Quranic schools of Syria and Bahrain, my comprehensive aim is to explore how visual formats inform visual contents, to intertwine photojournalism and anthropology's different epistemologies and ontologies, and, finally, to use my skills and understanding to suggest photography as an interrogative medium for contemporary research. Post-synchronization and Re-contextualisation - Results of an Image Repatriation Project with Old Ethnographic Films from Kiribati Author: Rolf Husmann (University of Göttingen) email Mail All Authors

Short Abstract
This paper summarizes some of the results of a project of image repatriation, in which short ethnographic dance documentaries shot in 1964 in the Gilbert Islands (nowadays: Kiribati, Micronesia) were post-synchronized and others were re-contextualised by combining them with recent material on local handicrafts.

Long Abstract
In 1964, the German ethnographer Gerd Koch spent almost one year in the Gilbert Islands, now the Micronesian state of Kiribati. Apart from other methods of data-collection, Koch also made some 70 short ethnographic 16mm-films, published by IWF Goettingen, Germany. They were never returned to Kiribati, until in 2010 and 2011 Wolfgang Kempf and Rolf Husmann repatriated digital copies of the silent films. Part of their project was also to attempt to postsynchronize some the silent films showing dance performances with the help of archived audio-recordings and to recontextualize some films about handicrafts by combining them with recently shot material by local filmmakers. This paper summarizes some of the results of this project and offers audio-visual examples of that work. Transitive representation Author: Massimo Canevacci (University of Sao Paulo (USP) ) email Mail All Authors

Short Abstract
My paper will address the confrontation between contemporary anthropology and more traditional methods by examining polyphonic tension, syncretic dialogue and the communicational conflict between hetero- and self-representation

Long Abstract
My research will focus the question of 'Who represents who?', in all its implications of power. Together with Kleber Meritororeu, we take up Marx's criticism of the division of labor - based on the structural centrality of social stratification

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and productive processes - is inadequate. The current post-industrial period and its acceleration of digital culture has further 'divided' subjects belonging to different cultures and experiences. For example, a division exists between those who communicate and those who are 'communicated' and between those who historically have the power of narration and those who are in the lonely state of being narrated objects. Even the classic vocation of anthropology to 'grasp the native point of view' has been rendered inadequate, since its legitimacy partially relies on the same individualized, differentiated native to communicate a personal point of view. Urban disorientation in Cape Town. Author: Giovanni Spissu email Mail All Authors

Short Abstract
This panel will explore how urban disorentation can be used as a method of observation for studying the city from an ethnographic point of view. The discussion will take as its starting point my research conducted in Cape Town into the signification of urban spaces in the post-Apartheid period.

Long Abstract
Is the state of disorientation we experience when we find ourselves in an unknown city a limitation or an opportunity when it comes to observing the city? In this panel the state of being extraneous and of disorientation is understood as a privileged state for observing the city. Feeling uprooted and alienated are considered as fundamental moments which enable the researcher to raise himself to new cognitive possibilities through a result which is "soiled" by intermixing and chance encounters between rational, perceptive and emotional levels in a blend which only the city knows how to produce. The wanderings of the French Surrealists, Guy Debord's Situationism, and the figure of the metropolitan flaneur described by Walter Benjamin represent the fundamental triggers for a deliberation on urban disorientation. Taking these works as my starting point, I will aim to develop a deliberation on urban disorientation understood as a privileged moment in the ethnographic observation of the city. It is also my intention to explore how the use of photography and the recording of ambient sounds can be crucial tools for the observation of the city through disorientation. Finally, I will describe salient moments from my fieldwork in Cape Town with the aim of observing and representing the processes of urban signification in the post-Apartheid period. This panel is closed to new paper proposals. Views: All Panels All Tracks Plenaries Panels Being Human General Life and death Producing the Earth Survival and extinction The world of the mind and the mind in the world Movement, mobility and migration Other Museums Visual Authors Convenors
Copyright © 2010 John Gledhill for UK National Committee of the IUAES About the UK Committee | Main IUAES Website | The Congress Blog

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