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A history of authorship in ethnographic film
Author: Paul Henley

Beyond Observation offers a historical analysis of ethnographic film from the birth of cinema in 1895 until 2015. It covers a large number of films made in a broad range of styles, in many different parts of the world, from the Arctic to Africa, from urban China to rural Vermont. It is the first extensive historical account of its kind and will be accessible to students and lecturers in visual anthropology as well as to those previously unfamiliar with ethnographic film.

Among the early genres that Paul Henley discusses are French reportage films, the Soviet kulturfilm, the US travelogue, the classic documentaries of Robert Flaherty and Basil Wright, as well as the more academic films of Margaret Mead and Gregory Bateson. Among the leading film-makers of the post-war period, he discusses Jean Rouch, John Marshall and Robert Gardner, as well as the emergence of Observational Cinema in the 1970s. He also considers ‘indigenous media’ projects of the 1980s, and the ethnographic films that flourished on British television until the 1990s.

In the final part, he examines the recent films of David and Judith MacDougall, the Harvard Sensory Media Lab, and a range of films authored in a participatory manner, as possible models for the future.

Open Access (free)
The Queen in Australia
Jane Landman

in the Pacific suggest that the term better describes a historical period of international political enthusiasm, rather than any standard political process. In Australia and Aotearoa-New Zealand, decolonisation continues into present-day struggles over Indigenous land rights and treaty obligations for example, while international enthusiasm has passed over secessionist struggles in West Papua in

in The British monarchy on screen
Open Access (free)
An allegory of imperial rapport
Deirdre Gilfedder

Britain. 27 Yet they also signal its declining relevance in an increasingly multicultural society with the narrow focus on the ‘Anglo’ white male dissipating in the films of the 1990s and beyond. Felicity Collins and Therese Davis demonstrate the rupture that the Mabo decision of 1992 (a High Court decision that allowed Indigenous Australians to claim their land rights) brought to Australian cinema, 28 introducing a

in The British monarchy on screen
Open Access (free)
Indigenous media and the Video nas Aldeias project
Paul Henley

the possibilities of this chapter. Ginsburg herself has published a relatively recent review of this proliferating field, paying particular attention to the emergence of indigenous television stations in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Taiwan and in certain countries in Latin America (notably Mexico and Bolivia), as well as to the emergence of ‘Fourth Cinema’, that is, internationally distributed fictional feature films that not only treat indigenous themes, but are produced according to indigenous ideas about collaborative authorship. While outsiders, including in

in Beyond observation
Open Access (free)
Films of re-enactment in the post-war period
Paul Henley

-enactment projects that took place during this period: one was carried out in the mid-1960s with a group of Inuit in northern Canada, while the other was a more or less simultaneous project involving Aboriginal people in Central Australia. The past in the present tense: the Netsilik Eskimo project The filming project carried out in Canada concerned the Netsilik Eskimo, or Netsilingmiut, as they are known today (literally, the Seal People). The Netsilingmiut live at Kugaaruk (formerly known as Pelly Bay), lying on the extreme northwestern lip

in Beyond observation
Open Access (free)
The complexities of collaborative authorship
Paul Henley

anthropology, particularly in teaching. In 1976, after completing the editing of the Yanomamɨ films that he had made with Napoleon Chagnon, Asch took up a post at the Department of Anthropology at the Australia National University (ANU) in Canberra. Over the next few years, together with his wife Patsy Asch, he shot a series of films in various locations around Indonesia, each based on collaboration with an anthropologist from the ANU department: with James Fox on the island of Roti, and with two graduate students, E. Douglas Lewis on Flores, and Linda Connor on Bali

in Beyond observation
Paul Henley

concerned with films that had, at most, limited commercial objectives, and which fall into three broadly overlapping categories: films that were made for the purposes of academic research, films made for museums and, finally, films made for a range of purposes associated with state-funded empire- and nation-building projects that aimed at inventorising and co-opting the culture of First Nations or other indigenous groups. Even with these restrictions, I can only consider a very limited number of examples. However, I shall frequently direct readers to

in Beyond observation
Open Access (free)
The principles of Observational Cinema
Paul Henley

present this report at a conference in Sydney later that same year. It was there that he became aware just how diverse the inhabitants of the world of ethnographic film-making were. The participants included Jean Rouch and Robert Gardner, both of whom he already knew, but others whom he did not, including Ian Dunlop and Roger Sandall, both then engaged in forms of ‘salvage’ ethnographic film-making among Australian Aborigines, as described in Chapter 3 . 6 On his return from

in Beyond observation
Open Access (free)
Mandy Merck

presenting their tributes, and the occasional Indigenous dancer – are played by Australians in a striking performance of imaginary unity. Fifty-six years later, both social hierarchy and imperial loyalty were confirmed in the highly successful dramatisation of Elizabeth’s father, the soon-to-be George VI, and his treatment by Australian actor-turned-speech therapist Lionel Logue. The King’s Speech (2010) takes the imperial story

in The British monarchy on screen
Queen Victoria, photography and film at the fin de siècle
Ian Christie

ENTHUSIASM, the vast audience rising EN MASSE, cheering incessantly until the picture was reproduced. 52 As the screenings continued in Melbourne, ‘the waving arm of Sir George Turner’, the Australian Prime Minister, was reported to be ‘loudly applauded every evening’. 53 In Canada, where there were also no doubt mixed responses

in The British monarchy on screen