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Magnetic Memories, Revolutionary Camcorders, and Videomaker Magazine, 1986-1993


Magnetic Memories, Revolutionary Camcorders, and Videomaker Magazine, 1986-1993

Spaulding, Hannah (2012) Magnetic Memories, Revolutionary Camcorders, and Videomaker Magazine, 1986-1993. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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This study examines the discursive construction of amateur and home video in the late 1980s and early 1990s, analyzing its emergence, popularity, and practices. Through an analysis of 150 articles published by Videomaker Magazine – a video hobbyist publication directed toward amateur video practitioners – between 1986 and 1993, this thesis works to examine how the magazine’s contributors, most of whom were self-described video enthusiasts, expressed the meaning, significance, and power of video as a medium, videomaking as a practice, and videomaker as an identity. Using the concepts of the private and public spheres, and the analytical approaches of home movie scholars, including Patricia Zimmermann, James Moran, and José van Dijck, my research contends that the value given to amateur and home video practices within Videomaker Magazine was informed by the gendered discourses of amateurism, professionalism, and domesticity. I argue that within Videomaker certain video practices were deemed more important than others, their significance hinging largely in the degree of public recognition they attained. Home video, as the most personal form of amateur production, held the lowest position within Videomaker’s hierarchy, while professional videography held the highest. The magazine’s articles advanced the view that amateur video gained social, cultural, and political value – and was even described as revolutionary – when it was incorporated into broadcast television, whether through news programs or public access stations. Thus, through a discursive analysis of Videomaker Magazine, this thesis examines the histories and practices helping define the meaning and significance of home and amateur video.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Communication Studies
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Spaulding, Hannah
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Media Studies
Date:6 September 2012
Thesis Supervisor(s):Acland, Charles
ID Code:974651
Deposited On:16 Jun 2017 14:45
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:38
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