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They Must Be Represented: The Politics of Documentary

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  • Paula Rabinowitz
  • Verso
  • Paperback
  • 9781859840252
  • 9.07 X 5.97 X 0.86 inches
  • 0.98 pounds
  • Performing Arts > Film - General
  • English
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Book Description

They Must Be Represented examines documentary in print, photography, television and film from the 1930s through the 1980s, using the lens of recent feminist film theory as well as scholarship on race, class and gender emerging from the new interdisciplinary approach of American cultural studies. Paula Rabinowitz discusses the ways in which these four media shaped truth-claims and political agency over the decades: in the 1930s, about poverty, labor and popular culture during the depression; in the 1960s, about the Vietnam War, racism, work and counterculture; and in the 1980s, about feminist and gay critiques of gender, history, narrative and cinema.

A great deal of documentary expression has been influenced by developments in cultural anthropology, as committed artists brought their cameras and typewriters into the field not only to report, but also to change the world. Yet recently the projects of both anthropology and documentary have come under scrutiny. Rabinowitz argues that the gendering of vision that occurs when narratives confirm to conventional genres profoundly affects the relation of documentarian to subject. She goes on to define this gendering of vision in documentary as an ethnographic process. Ultimately, this polemical study challenges the construction of the spectator in psychoanalytic film theory, and articulates a new model for theorizing power relations in culture and history.

They Must Be Represented: The Politics of Documentary

Author Bio

Paula Rabinowitz's research and teaching are in the areas of American materialist feminist cultural studies. Her work considers the interlocking roles of cinema, photography, painting and material culture in and through twentieth-century literature. 

She focuses on contemporary and modernist American women’s art and literature; her work explores hidden histories within working-class, pulp and popular cultures. Her books include LABOR AND DESIRE: WOMEN'S REVOLUTIONARY FICTION IN DEPRESSION AMERICA; THEY MUST BE REPRESENTED: THE POLITICS OF DOCUMENTARY; BLACK & WHITE & NOIR: AMERICA'S PULP MODERNISM; and AMERICAN PULP: HOW PAPERBACKS BROUGHT MODERNISM TO MAIN STREET, which won the 2015 DeLong Prize for Book History Book from Society for the History of Authorship, Readers and Publishing (SHARP). 

She is co-editor with Cristina Giorcelli of HABITS OF BEING, a four-volume series of essay on clothing, fashion, dress and identity; and co-editor, with Ruth Barraclough and Heather Bowen-Stryuk of RED LOVE ACROSS THE PACIFIC: POLITICAL AND SEXUAL REVOLUTIONS OF THE TWENTIETH CENTURY. She has also co-curated gallery exhibits on women and pulp fiction, women’s sound installation art and feminist film. She serves as Editor-in-Chief of the OXFORD RESEARCH ENCYCLOPEDIA OF LITERATURE.

 

Research Interests 

American women, minority, and working-class writers
Visual culture
film, photography, media
US literary radicalism
Marxist and feminist theories
Modernisms
Cultural studies
American Studies

 

Education 

  • Ph.D.: American Culture, University of Michigan, , 1986 - none
    M.A.: American Culture, University of Michigan, , 1980 - none
    B.A.: American Studies, Brandeis University, , 1974 - none

 

Source: University of Minnesota 

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