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”The digital beast is out of its box”: Om inställningar till digital teknik inom filmarkiv
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of ALM.
2010 (Swedish)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesisAlternative title
"The Digital Beast Is Out of Its Box” : Attitudes towards digital technology within film archives (English)
Abstract [en]

The aim of this two years master's thesis is to examine the attitudes amongst archivists of moving images towards the digital transition in the field of film/moving images. The attitudes within the field of film archivists towards digital technology and the digital transition have consequences for the ways in which digital technology is used for access, preservation, restoration and projection of film within archives of film or moving images.

The theoretical and methodological foundation is inspired by Norman Fairclough’s critical discourse theory. A number of articles from the film/moving image archival journals Journal of Film Preservation and The Moving Image are analysed.

The field of archives of film and moving images is proposed to form an order of discourse, as used in the theory of critical discourse. This order is challenged by the advent of the digital. Structures and typical patterns of the discourses within the film archive world are described and restructuring tendencies are stressed. Giovanna Fossati’s From grain to pixel is used as a valuable source, above all for its background on film theory and archival practice. Like the work of Fossati this analysis illustrates how different ontological assumptions on film are reflected in different attitudes towards digital technology.

The study also makes clear how the archival order of discourse is based on the materiality of the film artefact. Concepts like originality and authenticity are tied to this material artefact. A paradigm shift from artefact to disembodied content is proposed in the articles and is even seen as inevitable, but the digital transition is also described as forming a threat to the existing activities in the field of film archiving and to the analogue film.

The digital transition leads to a discussion of the identity of the film archive and attempts to define the core of it. The museum, the library and the archive are used in the articles as concepts to advocate mediation, access or preservation. Digital technology is associated with broader and increased access to collections held in film archives and is seen as a possibility to facilitate the access to the collections for scholars and the public and contributing to an enriched film culture. This view is contrasted to a more sceptical standpoint that advocates the authentic film experience defined by the dark room, the group experience and the projection of analogue film or a presentation mediated by the film museum.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. , 75 p.
, Uppsatser inom biblioteks- & informationsvetenskap, ISSN 1650-4267 ; 505
Keyword [en]
Archival materials - Digitization, Digital media, Discourse analysis, Film archives, Motion picture film - Preservation
Keyword [sv]
Digitala medier, Digitalisering, Diskursanalys, Filmarkiv, Film - bevarande och restaurering
National Category
Other Social Sciences not elsewhere specified
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-129386Local ID: 505OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-129386DiVA: diva2:343432
Humanities, Theology
Available from: 2010-08-16 Created: 2010-08-12 Last updated: 2010-09-15Bibliographically approved

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