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Athens Documentary School

Netherlands Institute at Athens (NIA), University of Leiden, Free University of Amsterdam (VU)



Specializations and courses on audiovisual and multimodal methodologies have become widely available in recent years. This process has transformed cultural anthropology and its relationship with other disciplines, forms of expression, visual and fine arts. The students will be offered the opportunity to learn various available methodological tools and up-to-date theoretical approaches. As this course is a research-based school, students will also produce small collaborative projects that will be presented at the Netherlands Institute at Athens and various venues in the Netherlands. Possible assignments include media projects such as documentary films, photo-essays, web documentaries, transmedia narratives, social media open fieldnotes, podcasts, vlogs, media-walks, installations, graffiti etc.

The (relative) democratization of the media, the possibility of producing and disseminating anthropological content in digital forms, the shift to more collaborative models of qualitative research, the active involvement of research participants in data production, the development of new audiences, and the use of new media in research reflect the radical transformations that have taken place in media ecology and the expansion of new ethnographic research practices that utilize the methodological heritage of visual anthropology.

This course is the ideal starting point for all students who would like to combine anthropological fieldwork with audio and video making, multimodal methodology and ethnographic docu- mentary. Our aim is to provide a basis for new and developing ethnographic skills, introduce our students to Athenian cityscapes to develop new projects and offer all the support, supervision and knowledge needed.

By bringing together experienced academic staff and long-standing university collaborations, the summer school, carries on the tradition of the NIA in promoting cutting-edge scholarship and building a student community for those who would like to continue their studies in these fields. Finally, the students are offered free accommodation in the historic neoclassical building of the institute next to the Acropolis of Athens, in one of the most vibrant parts of the city, in the areas of Koukaki/Plaka.

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