TNS Seminar Wednesday 3rd May: Prof Ulrike Meinhof

Please join us for the next Centre for Transnational Studies (TNS) seminar.

When: Wednesday 3rd May, 5-6.30pm

Where: Building 65, Room 1177

Who: Prof Ulrike Meinhof, University of Southampton

A researcherÔÇÖs tale – Revisiting research through the eyes of a camera and a diverse public


Part of the annual seminar series for the Centre for Transnational Studies (TNS).
My paper is based on my current experiences with an AHRC Follow-on-project : Madagascar in the world: the impact of music on global concerns. The project proposed to put the results of my previously AHRC-funded project TNMundi (2006-2010) into the popular and widely accessible form of a full-length music documentary, directed by Cesar Paes, an award-winning film director of the Parisian independent film company Laterit.

The film was completed in the autumn of 2016 and has so far been screened at various international film festivals and special screenings in the UK, Italy, and on La Reunion.

Each screening was accompanied by a questionnaire in the respective languages gauging audience reactions. Apart from wanting feed-back about the kind of audience the film attracted at each of these diverse sites in terms of age, gender, and origin and on how they responded to the artistic and musical quality of the film, there were some closed and some open questions on the themes and social concerns raised by the film and by the musicians in its centre.

My own previous narrative interviews and transnational field work with these Malagasy musicians had highlighted their transnational mobility, their attempt to challenge ethnic divisions by their music and to engage people worldwide in environmental and social causes. In my paper I will give a few examples of these and subsequently show a few key extracts of the film where the director in my view tried to raise these issues by the very indirect and subtle means of the film.

A brief assessment of some of the results of the questionnaires will lead to a discussion about some of the issues raised by replacing or complementing an academic top-down analysis in favour of a much more intuitive artistic format.

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