‘Take back the tube!’: The discursive construction of amateur film and video makingpurchase PDF
Authors: David Buckingham And Maria Pini And Rebekah Willett
film-making, video-making, amateur, family-history
This article focuses on the discursive construction of amateur film- and video-making within popular books, manuals and magazines, dating from 1921 to the present day. The theoretical approach derives primarily from Pierre Bourdieu's analysis of ‘cultural fields’, as developed particularly in his work on photography. We begin by exploring the broad rhetoric of ‘democratisation’ that characterises popular discussions of the potential of amateur film- and video-making. This leads on to a discussion of how the technology itself is framed and defined; how the identity of the amateur film-maker, and the social uses of amateur film-making, are constructed; and how the aesthetic dimensions of this practice are identified. Despite the excitement which commonly surrounds new visual representational technology, and despite the accelerating pace of technological change, we argue that there is a considerable historical continuity in terms of how amateur filmmaking is framed and defined.