2018 | 13 | The Many Lives of Europe’s Audiovisual Heritage

It is our great pleasure to present this special issue in honour of Sonja de Leeuw, one of the founding members of the journal. The issue brings together articles that honour Sonja’s inspiring contributions to television history and television historiography. This special issue of VIEW has been guest-edited by her colleagues at Utrecht University and University of Groningen to mark Sonja's pathbreaking engagement with, and achievements within, the field of digital television heritage.
The launch of this issue coincides with the symposium The Many Lives of Europe's Audiovisual Heritage Online, held at Utrecht University on May 16th, 2018, the day of Sonja's farewell lecture. Support comes from the projects MediaDNA & DARIAH-EU.

Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 12 of 12
  • Article
    Because His Bike Stood There: Visual Documents, Visible Evidence and the Discourse of Documentary
    Kessler, Frank (2018-05-16)
    The article discusses the use and post-production treatment of footage shot by Dutch filmmaker Louis  van Gasteren in his documentary Because My Bike Stood There (1966). The images depict a young man being beaten up by the police during a clash between the forces of order and people waiting to enter a photo exhibition on, ironically, police violence that had occurred about ten days earlier in Amsterdam. Van Gasteren combines the footage with an interview in which the victim explains that he had seen the exhibition and wanted to pass in order to walk over to his bike, when the policemen attacked him. Van Gasteren used slow-motion and thus enhanced the effect of the images illustrating the young man’s narrative, a strategy used twenty-five years later by the defence lawyers during the infamous Rodney King trial. This raises the issue of how documentary footage is discursively framed to enhance its persuasive effect. Van Gasteren’s film is not only an important historical document, it also invites to reflect on the status of “visible evidence” ascribed to documentary footage.
  • Article
    Crossing the Theory-Practice Divide: A Multi-Perspective Reflection on a Practical Course for Film and Television Students
    Sanders, Willemien; Everts, Daniel; Van Vugt, Bonnie (2018-05-16)
    Scholars are increasingly expected to share their knowledge through different media besides the  written publication but struggle to do so. How might they teach their students the skills to do so? This article argues that Practice as Research, developed by practitioners venturing into academia, provides a useful framework for shaping research outcomes into, for instance, video essays or interactive narratives. It is especially valuable for undergraduate students aiming to increase their knowledge and understanding of media through practical work, as it trains them in both practical and academic skills. This gives Practice as Research an added value in academic media studies curricula. This article is based on a case study of an advanced practical course for film and television students at Utrecht University and relies on course assignments, feedback conversations, and auto-ethnography. As this article was authored by the course lecturer and two students, it provides insight from multiple perspectives.
  • Article
    Did Grace Kelly Shed a Tear? The Monegasque Royal Wedding as a Disruptive Television Event
    Ellis, John (2018-05-16)
    Early television reveals the radical nature of the new medium as well as many of its affordances that were later rejected. The coverage of the Monegasque Royal Wedding of Prince Rainier of Monaco and Grace Kelly exposes the differences between cinema newsreels and live TV, and how, even at a public event, TV could invade the personal space of its subjects. Like a detective, the author reconstructs how this historical event was covered by film and TV, and how that footage was later re-used. The montage of the footage in different contexts encourages the audience to suppose that Grace Kelly might have shed a tear during the wedding ceremony.   While this question might seem ridiculous to a republican, it is important for our understanding of celebrity in modern culture. The author’s answer to the question reveals the media historical meaning of both the media event, its coverage and the possible existence of that tear.
  • Article
    Is the End of Television Coming to an End?
    Bourdon, Jérôme (2018-05-16)
    This article analyses the discourses of the end of television in relation to its status as a bad object. It traces the early, transnational, massive negative treatments of television. It suggests four explanations for this: sociological (television as a popular medium), economical (disappointing investment), metapsychological (frustrating experience), technological (insincere dispositif). It suggests that discourses of the end are coming to an end, because television is becoming a kind of archive, increasingly considered nostalgically, while its ‘quality series’ are achieving canonical aesthetic status. Finally, it suggests that discourses of the ends are organized into systems of interdependent ‘good’ and ‘bad’ media.
  • Article
    Keeping Up the Live: Recorded Television as Live Experience
    van Es, Karin; Keilbach, Judith (2018-05-16)
    Increasingly new media platforms are making claims to liveness. Looking back in television history we also find programmes that were recorded, but kept up the claims of being live. This raises the question as to what accounts for the attraction of the live? Focusing on Ein Platz für Tiere and the Netflix Live spoof of 2017 this article discusses disparate articulations of the live and addresses the need to balance freedom, chaos and control on the part of media producers. For their greatest challenges is that boredom and chaos haunts their output simultaneously. It clarifies also how liveness is not a given property of any technology, but in fact hard work.
  • Article
    Old Stories and New Developments: Engaging with Audiovisual Heritage Online
    Badenoch, Alexander; Gorp, Jasmijn van; Hagedoorn, Berber; Keilbach, Judith; Müller, Eggo; Mustata, Dana (2018-05-16)
    It is our great pleasure to present this special issue of VIEW Journal of European Television and Culture in honour of Sonja de Leeuw, one of the founding members of the journal. The issue brings together articles that honour Sonja’s inspiring contributions to television history and television historiography
  • Article
    Televisual Satire in the Age of Glocalization: The Case of Zondag met Lubach
    Nieuwenhuis, Ivo (2018-05-16)
    This article analyses the highly popular Dutch satirical TV-show Zondag met Lubach (ZML) from the perspective of ‘glocalization.’ This places the show both within the global tradition of late-night satire, originating in the United States, and in the local Dutch tradition of satirical TV. A general overview of these traditions is followed by a close reading of one ZML segment, which is then compared to the American show Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. This comparison reveals the dominant influence of the American tradition of performing televisual satire, thus contesting the common assumption in television studies that nationhood still  plays a central role in the practice of broadcasting.
  • Article
    TV on the Radio/ Radio on Television: European Television Heritage as a Source for Understanding Radio History
    Badenoch, Alexander; Hagedoorn, Berber (2018-05-16)
    Radio is only to a limited extent a ‘blind medium’. Visual and material aspects have long played a role in the way the medium has acquired meaning. While print has become a common source for radio history, audiovisual material – such as is preserved on the EUscreen portal with extensive metadata and potential for context – offers potential not just for understanding the evolution of television, but rather the entire mass-media ensemble. This article explores the possibilities and problems of using EUscreen as a source for a comparative and transnational history of radio, looking in particular at the visual iconography and narrative structures of audiovisual material found on the portal.
  • Article
    What is Not in the Archive: Teaching Television History in the Digital Humanities Era
    Gorp, Jasmijn van; Kiewik, Rosita (2018-05-16)
    This article discusses the pedagogy and outcome of a new assignment we introduced in the course ‘Television History Online’ at Utrecht University. We assigned the students the task to build a canon of a genre of Dutch television and create a video poster on the EUscreen portal consisting of clips that represent part of their canon. In our pedagogy, we argue that it is important to draw students’ attention to what is missing in the archive. Therefore, we offered the students the possibility to replace illegal clips with blue videos and clips of non-digital or lost television programmes with black videos in their video poster. We found evidence for an availability paradox: students let not only their selection of programmes and clips, but also the demarcation of their entire canon, be reliant on the digital, online availability of audiovisual material. At the same time, they explicitly did not want to be restricted by unavailability. In this article we stress the need for more open data and the importance of training digital literacy skills.
  • Article
    ‘Failed Interviews’: Doing Television History with Women
    Mustata, Dana (2018-05-16)
    This article zooms into the practice and historiographical implications of doing television history with women. Drawing primarily upon interviews with women having worked at Romanian television during communism, the article develops a conceptual understanding of ‘feminine voices’ as primary sources into television history. It situates these gendered historical sources within historiographical practices of accessing  neglected, marginalized or silenced areas in television history, in other words, the ‘blind spots’ in  the medium’s history.
  • Article
    ‘Great Stuff!’: British Pathé's YouTube Channel and Curatorial Strategies for Audiovisual Heritage in a Commercial Ecosystem
    Müller, Eggo (2018-05-16)
    In 2014, British Pathé launched its YouTube channel with more than 85,000 items of audiovisualheritage from the 20th century. This article analyses the curational strategies of this channel as developed bythe German multi-channel network Mediakraft in consideration of YouTube’s algorithms and supposed userexpectations. This article argues that, in the context of YouTube’s commercial ecosystem, Mediakraft’scuration emphasizes celebrities, spectacular historical events, and curiosities to attract users online.
  • Article
    ‘On the Road Again’: An Experimental Media Archaeology Journey to the Origins of Transnational Television in Europe
    Fickers, Andreas; O'Dwyer, Andy; Germain, Alexandre (2018-05-16)
    This video documents the authors’ journey back to the origins of transnational television in Europe. Inspired by the idea of experimental media archaeology (EMA), the trip to original locations of the transnational media event known as ‘Paris-week’ in 1952 illustrates a new approach to media historiography, which aims to sensitize television historians for the material remains, topography and physical spaces of early television transmissions. Readers /viewers are invited to watch the different episodes of the authors’ journey by clicking on the figures.