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Collective memory and research-led filmmaking: spatial legacies of dictatorship in the Dominican Republic


Blackmore, Lisa Marie (2018). Collective memory and research-led filmmaking: spatial legacies of dictatorship in the Dominican Republic. Popular Communication, 16(2):90-105.

Abstract

This article explores theoretical-methodological challenges in researching the formation of collective memory in the wake of dictatorship. The worldwide growth of memory sites suggests space crystallizes memory into stable formations. However, rather than monolithic discourses, environments attest to complex processes of memorialization and willful amnesia. I propose that research-led filmmaking can draw out spaces’ heterogeneous “stories in waiting.” Through the documentary After Trujillo, which revisits memory sites and ruins of Rafael Trujillo’s dictatorship from 1930 to 1961 in the Dominican Republic, I assess how working at the interface between research and film can (a) probe space’s testimonial capacity; (b) engage audiences in public debates about violent pasts; and (c) stimulate sustainable discussions through online platforms. Given that films still lack recognition as academic outputs, at stake here is the claim that creative methodologies constitute “a form of research” and “detectable research outputs.”

Abstract

This article explores theoretical-methodological challenges in researching the formation of collective memory in the wake of dictatorship. The worldwide growth of memory sites suggests space crystallizes memory into stable formations. However, rather than monolithic discourses, environments attest to complex processes of memorialization and willful amnesia. I propose that research-led filmmaking can draw out spaces’ heterogeneous “stories in waiting.” Through the documentary After Trujillo, which revisits memory sites and ruins of Rafael Trujillo’s dictatorship from 1930 to 1961 in the Dominican Republic, I assess how working at the interface between research and film can (a) probe space’s testimonial capacity; (b) engage audiences in public debates about violent pasts; and (c) stimulate sustainable discussions through online platforms. Given that films still lack recognition as academic outputs, at stake here is the claim that creative methodologies constitute “a form of research” and “detectable research outputs.”

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Romance Studies
06 Faculty of Arts > Latin American Center Zurich
Dewey Decimal Classification:800 Literature, rhetoric & criticism
470 Latin & Italic languages
410 Linguistics
440 French & related languages
460 Spanish & Portuguese languages
450 Italian, Romanian & related languages
Language:English
Date:2018
Deposited On:05 Jan 2018 15:35
Last Modified:28 Mar 2018 01:02
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN:1540-5710
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1080/15405702.2017.1350686
Related URLs:http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/15405702.2017.1350686 (Publisher)

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