The Documentarist and His Poor: On Radical Otherness and the Exuberance of the Have-Nots

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@article{952ccf4c8c8d477a91ba97ae2f2e3892,
title = "The Documentarist and His Poor: On Radical Otherness and the Exuberance of the Have-Nots",
abstract = "This article re-evaluates the stance of a documentary filmmaker as the one who gives voices, as well as certain gestures of social documentary such as ‘speaking for’ or ‘promoting equality’ – specifically in relation to marginalized experiences subjugated in the context of hegemony. French philosopher Jacques Ranci{\`e}re’s radical notions of equality and emancipation as something which is not given (by giving voices, spaces or equality to the not-haves) but is the given, is the inspiration for this article. According to Ran{\cc}iere, in relation to the societal and political sphere as an arena of dissensus, an ongoing negotiation of belonging and non-belonging, equality is a point of departure rather than an aim. What are the ramifications of the notion of ‘radical emancipation’ for our ethical stance as documentary filmmakers? How does this notion challenge the tendencies such as the victim motif, agenda of change, as well as the didactic or instrumental quality of the genre which is still deeply embedded in the practice of social documentary? How does it unveil the benevolence of the gestures of giving voices or affect our ethical stance and relation to social actors, the Others, whose life experience is the material for the films we make?",
author = "Susanna Helke",
year = "2017",
language = "English",
volume = "36",
journal = "Post Script: Essays in Film and the Humanities",
issn = "0277-9897",

}

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TY - JOUR

T1 - The Documentarist and His Poor

T2 - On Radical Otherness and the Exuberance of the Have-Nots

AU - Helke, Susanna

PY - 2017

Y1 - 2017

N2 - This article re-evaluates the stance of a documentary filmmaker as the one who gives voices, as well as certain gestures of social documentary such as ‘speaking for’ or ‘promoting equality’ – specifically in relation to marginalized experiences subjugated in the context of hegemony. French philosopher Jacques Rancière’s radical notions of equality and emancipation as something which is not given (by giving voices, spaces or equality to the not-haves) but is the given, is the inspiration for this article. According to Rançiere, in relation to the societal and political sphere as an arena of dissensus, an ongoing negotiation of belonging and non-belonging, equality is a point of departure rather than an aim. What are the ramifications of the notion of ‘radical emancipation’ for our ethical stance as documentary filmmakers? How does this notion challenge the tendencies such as the victim motif, agenda of change, as well as the didactic or instrumental quality of the genre which is still deeply embedded in the practice of social documentary? How does it unveil the benevolence of the gestures of giving voices or affect our ethical stance and relation to social actors, the Others, whose life experience is the material for the films we make?

AB - This article re-evaluates the stance of a documentary filmmaker as the one who gives voices, as well as certain gestures of social documentary such as ‘speaking for’ or ‘promoting equality’ – specifically in relation to marginalized experiences subjugated in the context of hegemony. French philosopher Jacques Rancière’s radical notions of equality and emancipation as something which is not given (by giving voices, spaces or equality to the not-haves) but is the given, is the inspiration for this article. According to Rançiere, in relation to the societal and political sphere as an arena of dissensus, an ongoing negotiation of belonging and non-belonging, equality is a point of departure rather than an aim. What are the ramifications of the notion of ‘radical emancipation’ for our ethical stance as documentary filmmakers? How does this notion challenge the tendencies such as the victim motif, agenda of change, as well as the didactic or instrumental quality of the genre which is still deeply embedded in the practice of social documentary? How does it unveil the benevolence of the gestures of giving voices or affect our ethical stance and relation to social actors, the Others, whose life experience is the material for the films we make?

M3 - Article

VL - 36

JO - Post Script: Essays in Film and the Humanities

JF - Post Script: Essays in Film and the Humanities

SN - 0277-9897

ER -

ID: 14903292