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Making publics: Documentary as do-it-with-others citizenship

Rose, Mandy


Mandy Rose
Professor in Documentary and Digital Cultures


Megan Boler

Matt Ratto


This chapter explores significant collaborative, interactive documentary practices that are emerging in the context of digital culture, and situates these emerging practices in relation to the counter-history within documentary in which subjects have taken on forms of agency and editorial control in the production process.
By using contemporary examples I will suggest why the concept of DiY is problematic for documentary. Awareness that a DiY approach to documentary making is not universally available prompts a questioning of the valorisation of the concept of DiY in the context of complex media production. Through the lens of co-creativity I discuss collaborative documentaries as a strategic response to the ‘participation gap’ (Jenkins 2006, 23).
But there is more than this at stake in these collaborative documentary practices. In my view, the concept of DiWO (Do-it-With-Others) is better equipped to capture the dynamics and importance of these projects. A co-creative, DiWO approach to documentary provides a progressive re-working of documentary’s historic role in the public sphere, as an "open space" (De Michiel and Zimmermann) for dialogue and a stage for the performance of citizenship.


Rose, M. (2014). Making publics: Documentary as do-it-with-others citizenship. In M. Ratto, & M. Boler (Eds.), DIY Citizenship : Critical Making and Social Media (201-212). Boston: Massachusetts Institute of Technology Press (MIT Press)

Publication Date Feb 1, 2014
Deposit Date Jul 17, 2015
Publisher Massachusetts Institute of Technology Press (MIT Press)
Peer Reviewed Not Peer Reviewed
Pages 201-212
Book Title DIY Citizenship : Critical Making and Social Media
ISBN 9780262026819
Keywords documentary, interactive documentary, participation, digital culture, co-creation
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information Additional Information : © 2014 Massachusetts Institute of Technology, by permission of the MIT Press


DiY_Citizenship_MRose_(2) (2).doc (74 Kb)

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