No man’s land: the performative role of landscape in documentary

This source preferred by Trevor Hearing

Authors: Hearing, T.

Start date: 1 September 2010

Publisher: Acting With Facts Conference

Place of Publication: Vimeo

In this video paper I reflect on how I am developing a hybrid documentary drama format using a video blog to explore what the writer Blake Morrison has recently referred to as the “no man’s land of unverifiable authenticity” (reviewing Reality Hunger: A Manifesto David Shields (2010). I argue that we can develop a more complex form of expression with video than is found in its common use in popular culture to articulate a problematised and scholarly understanding of the world which can engage with this epistemological “no man’s land”. I test this argument by considering how I am using landscapes within the documentary narratives associated with my current documentary project concerning aspects of the Balfour Declaration of 1917. I question how I have used the “authenticity” of the landscape of a disused armaments factory and other locations to perform the real in a narrative which cannot otherwise be verified.

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