Exploring Central Valley Memories: Visual Anthropology (Spring 2016)

Description: The discussion is anchored in the principles of visual anthropology, a sub-discipline of cultural anthropology where visual elements (photographs and ethnographic films) help clarify, represent and archive cultural knowledge. At the heart of this discussion is the question: how do we create an infrastructure to visually explore, document, and disseminate diverse cultural knowledge?

Lecture/Discussion: Steve Arounsack, Assistant Professor of Cultural Anthropology at California State University, Stanislaus. His is a filmmaker and media developer whose productions have showcased on PBS and at public and private venues across the country.

Foundational Texts/Resources: Ruby, Jay. Picturing Culture: Explorations of Film and Anthropology, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2000.

Key Questions: What histories and memories are consciously important and perhaps unconsciously forgotten among residents of the Central Valley? How do immigrants of the Central Valley narrate the complex mosaic of their lived experience? Are there differences in how the elder gatekeepers and the younger generations tell their stories? Further, how can we invite participatory filmmaking in documenting local histories?

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