What Is Non-Fiction Cinema? On the Very Idea of Motion Picture Communication

By Trevor Ponech | Go to book overview

ences and reasons; I have neither tried to seek out nor actively considered much if any of the available, centrally relevant evidence concerning Nanook's production and its maker's attitudes, methods, plans, and objectives. In short, I have little justification for P1, hence little indication of its truth. Note that my belief could pertain to any aspect of Nanook's representational content: to its collateral information about the Inuit, to Flaherty's attitudes and actions, or to the attitudes of his culture. The criteria of justification would remain the same.

Although its function as a label for a grand generic roundup of otherwise diverse films far exceeds its etymological import, the very name "documentary" seems since the 1970s to have provoked scholars to bury the genre below a mountain of hesitations about its goodness as evidence. At this stage of cinema studies" development -- with the awakening of interests in analytic, cognitivist, and realist perspectives; and in light of new and highly relevant contributions to post-positivist philosophy of knowledge -- we have an opportunity to make well-informed, thorough adjustments to our attitudes and approaches toward the documentary's epistemic dimensions. I have defended one possible framework within which to do such remedial work. It is a moderate, critically minded variety of realism that requires no assurances of truth but, rather, degrees of justification for regarding some representations as true.


Notes
1.
Here I follow Richard Boyd, "Metaphor and Theory Change: What Is Metaphor' a Metaphor For?", in Metaphor and Thought, ed. Andrew Ortony ( New York: Cambridge University Press, 1979), 382.
2.
Paul K. Moser, Knowledge and Evidence ( Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1989), 26.
3.
Garth Hallet, Language and Truth ( New Haven: Yale University Press, 1988), offers an introduction to various notions of correspondence and the difficulties associated with them. For critiques of traditional correspondence theories, see Hilary Putnam, Reason, Truth, and History ( Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1981), 56-74.
4.
Moser, Knowledge and Evidence, 31.
5.
See Chapter 2, pp. 63-69.
6.
However, were you to form the belief, upon gazing at the depiction, that the pre-filmic subject has such an unusual face, you would possess a false belief, i.e., one that misrepresents reality.
7.
I do not suppose for a moment either that valid legal, moral, or political judgments can be realized in isolation from episternically valid judgments or that sundry practical, legal, and ethical-political considerations cannot exert a powerful influence, for better or for worse, over attempts to gain knowledge of natural as well as human psychological and social realities. Nor do I assume either that verifying that P is the case necessarily settles all legal, moral, and political ques

-276-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
What Is Non-Fiction Cinema? On the Very Idea of Motion Picture Communication
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Acknowledgments vii
  • Introduction 1
  • Notes 7
  • 1 - What is Non-Fiction Cinema? 8
  • Notes 36
  • 2 - Representation and Depiction 40
  • Notes 69
  • 3 - What About Reality? 73
  • Notes 95
  • 4 - Plans for Non-Fiction 98
  • Notes 114
  • 5 - Planning for Content 116
  • Notes 140
  • 6 - Planning for Force 143
  • Notes 171
  • 7 - Perceptual Access to Cinematic Meaning 175
  • Notes 206
  • 8 - Aspects of Interpretation 213
  • Notes 242
  • 9 - The Truth of Non-Fiction 246
  • Notes 276
  • Works Cited 281
  • Index 293
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 302

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.