Authorship, autobiography and the archive: Marilyn on Marilyn, television and documentary theory

Article


Kerr, P. 2015. Authorship, autobiography and the archive: Marilyn on Marilyn, television and documentary theory. VIEW: Journal of European Television History and Culture. 4 (8), pp. 67-79. https://doi.org/10.18146/2213-0969.2015.jethc094
TypeArticle
TitleAuthorship, autobiography and the archive: Marilyn on Marilyn, television and documentary theory
AuthorsKerr, P.
Abstract

In 2004, documentary theorist Michael Renov described ‘the recent turn to filmic autobiography’ as ‘the defining trend of “post-verite” documentary practice...’ In 2008 Renov went further still, suggesting that ‘the very idea of autobiography challenges/reinvents the VERY IDEA of documentary.’ Archive based autobiographical filmmaking, meanwhile, is even more problematic for documentary theory. Indeed, a number of recent documentaries, because of their status somewhere in the spectrum between biography and autobiography, have prompted the construction of an entirely new conceptual category, deploying archival film, often in the form of home movies, to document the lives of their human subjects in Renov’s formulation ‘shared textual authority’. In this article I examine one of ‘my’ own archive based documentaries, ‘Marilyn on Marilyn’ (BBC2 2001), as a way of asking questions not just about biographical and autobiographical documentary but also - and perhaps more urgently - about attributions of authorship in archive-based documentary.

LanguageEnglish
PublisherNetherlands Institute for Sound and Vision
JournalVIEW: Journal of European Television History and Culture
ISSN2213-0969
Publication dates
Print30 Dec 2015
Publication process dates
Deposited23 Jun 2016
Accepted01 Dec 2015
Output statusPublished
Publisher's version
Copyright Statement

Publisher: Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision in collaboration with Utrecht University, University of Luxembourg and Royal Holloway University of London.
Copyright: The text of this article has been published under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Netherlands License.
This license does not apply to the media referenced in the article, which is subject to the individual rights owner’s terms.

Web address (URL)https://www.viewjournal.eu/articles/10.18146/2213-0969.2015.jethc094/
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.18146/2213-0969.2015.jethc094
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