This article examines the relationship between ethnographic filmmaking and television, arguing that the fundamental dilemma of the ethnographic film screened on television is that it must legitimize its position by differentiating itself from fiction, i.e. by establishing some sort of realism, while at the same time employing fictional devices to dramatize ethnographic 'stories' in order to make the film appealing to viewers. These issues are illustrated by a film project on the Himba living in Kaokoland in northwest Namibia. The project was undertaken in July 1994 for Discovery Channel and the film was shown in Europe and America in February 1995.

Language Advocacy and Awareness
Language and Technology
Language Research and Linguistics
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2021-10-30 22:59:56