Skip to Content

The Shifting Temporalities of Documentary Film

«Back To Seminars

Organizer: Maria G. Arenillas

Co-Organizer: Anna Zimmer

Contact the Seminar Organizers

Traditionally, documentary has been associated with memory, the fragmentary, and with remnants of the past. By foregrounding these temporalities, many filmmakers engage in a dialogue between past and present, while others anticipate or speculate about the future.  In this seminar, we seek to consider the role of contemporary documentary film in making both the past and future present. We hope to explore not only the construction of temporality in films themselves, but also its relation to reception, viewing, and distribution.  We invite papers that ask such questions as: How do documentary filmmakers navigate the portrayal of past, present, and future utopias and dystopias? How does the participation of indigenous people in the film making process challenge traditional temporalities in ethnographic works? How does documentary film shape new temporalities not only through visual means, but also through audio? In what way are new technologies impacting conceptions of time through computer imaging and simulation? How do various distribution platforms impact access to documentaries and the temporality of viewing, for example, viewing a feature length documentary at a theater in comparison to binge-watching docuseries at home? What effects do experimental films produce when displaying familiar images at unfamiliar tempo?    

«Back To Seminars