Visualizations of the self. Modes of self-representation in Austrian amateur films


Sa, 01/07/2017 – 11:00


Université Sorbonne Nouvelle – Paris 3, Paris, Frankreich, Raum: D33

Vortrag von Michaela Scharf im Rahmen der NECS – Konferenz: „Sensibility and the Senses. Media – Bodies – Practices”

The paper focuses on the potential of amateur films for research on social and cultural history regarding the correlation between modes of self-representation and media in general, and practices of subjectification, in particular.

Based on the very first results of the dissertation project on “Practices of Subjectification in Austrian Amateur Films between the 1920s and the 1980s” the paper discusses different forms of the production of the self in amateur filmmaking. It follows a praxeological understanding of subjectivity, claiming that the subject is constituted during the performance of social practices. Based on Michel Foucault’s concept of “technologies of the self”, amateur film production can be understood as a self-reflexive practice. Both the filmmakers and the persons acting in front of the camera produce a specific understanding of themselves during the filming process. The filmmakers decide which moments of their lives are worth of being filmed and therefore remembered. The amateur films show both the filmmakers’ personal visions of life and the filmed persons’ practices of subjectification following a cultural repertoire of images, gestures and facial expressions.

By means of selected amateur films the talk examines different modes of self-representation and emphasizes the correlations between practices of self-visualizations and the specific technological constitution of the medium.

Panel: Technology, Bodies, and Practices in Austrian Amateur Film. Chair: Mats Björkin; Respondent: Nico de Klerk

Veranstalter: Necs – European Network for Cinema and Media Studies