An Introductory Exploration of the Ethics of Documentary

Understanding Media Studies – Fall 2012

Question 1: Documenting your own situation vs. Documenting Someone Else’s

Brittany:  I am using “Tarnation” and “Jonestown: The Life and Death of the Peoples Temple” as examples and ways to explore how we portray ourselves as subjects vs. others in … Continue reading

October 10, 2012 · Leave a comment

Question 1: Documenting your own situation vs. Documenting Someone Else’s

Heidi: Heidi Gelover- Video answer to Question #1 – [password: question1] I chose to focus on a few photographers for this question because I feel that they have a very … Continue reading

October 10, 2012 · Leave a comment

Question 2: Representing the Other

AnnSophie: Alan Rosenthal writes that the ethical consideration is one of the most important topics in the documentary field of practice. He states that filmmakers “use and expose peoples lives” … Continue reading

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Question 3: What are the dynamics between the filmmaker and the subject(s), when the filmmaker is not directly impacted by the topic of the film or is not a part of the community being filmed?

I chose four films to focus on for this question: Nanook of the North, Waste Land, How to Survive a Plague, and The Waiting Room. To me, each of the … Continue reading

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Question 4: Who are you serving with your work (The Society you came into or the society to which you belong/back home)?

Linda: This silent dichotomy, present in most documentaries, has been a preoccupation of mine since first watching “Capturing the Friedmans” as a teen back in 2005. Who was really focus … Continue reading

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Question 4: Who are you serving with your work – who is the message for?

Katherine: In answering this question I looked for film clips that served two purposes. The message in the content and the message in the medium each serve a different audience. … Continue reading

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Question 5: Editing – What do you choose to include in the final product? How do you choose this?

Lotte: What does a documentarian choose to include in the final product and why? What does is look like? How can documentary transform into another medium?   How do you document the unrepresentable? How … Continue reading

October 10, 2012 · Leave a comment