New PDF release: Bad Aboriginal Art : Tradition, Media, and Technological

By Eric Michaels

ISBN-10: 0816623414

ISBN-13: 9780816623419

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Extra resources for Bad Aboriginal Art : Tradition, Media, and Technological Horizons (Theory Out of Bounds, Vol 3)

Example text

Generally such anec­ dotes are not explained but get filed away with other exotic superstitions held by curious primitives, leaving these people to sort out their own relationship to cam­ eras, photographs, film, and now video. Traditional people sometimes follow through by taming the magical properties of recording media. For example, when missionaries and health workers banned the preservation and display of the bones TRAD ITI O NAL P E O P L E S of dead ancestors in Melanesian houses, photographs soon replaced bones in household memorials to these dead.

To that end I enlisted the assistance of many of Eric's friends and colleagues, without whose advice, energy, and steadfast sup­ port for the project this volume would never have appeared. Among them I wish to thank Michael Leigh, film archivist at AIATSIS, who kindly agreed to sketch out the Aboriginal media scene since the days of Eric. Marcia Langton, well-known Aboriginal activist, lecturer in Aboriginal studies in anthropology at Macquarie University, and current Chair of AIATSIS, gave generously of her time in prepar­ ing an overview of Eric's role in a local Aboriginal revolution.

Moreover, he calcu­ lated that an individual might spend up to $5,000 per annum to maintain a VCR and obtain cassettes. The usual lifespan of a VCR was not longer than a year because of the harsh physical conditions and the Aboriginal exchange system. He estimated roughly the cost of video supplies to Aboriginal residents of Yuendumu during 1983 at about $ 18,450. The sociality of videocassette use among Warlpiri, as docu­ mented by Michaels in 1983, can be seen as the precursor to their social organiza­ tion of television production, transmission, and reception at Yuendumu.

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Bad Aboriginal Art : Tradition, Media, and Technological Horizons (Theory Out of Bounds, Vol 3) by Eric Michaels


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