In the Frame: Social and Cultural Geographies of Documentary Modernism
Irina Rasmussen Goloubeva’s project explores modernist collaborative projects: the modes of reading they invite, the values they generate, and the worlds that they project. It argues that the adaptation of journalistic, ethnographic, and analytical modes of writing for aesthetic programmes we find in documentary modernism was a way to re-think the world dynamics and create new cultural and social geographies. The aim of this study is to map the complex ways the modernist imagination of the 1920s and 1930s migrated to a culturally diverse imaginary, sometimes enabling radically new world-conceptions. The project builds on the established methodological merger between new historicist and intermedial critical practice, supplemented with current world-making theory. The study will proceed through a cumulative analysis of the cultural and generic particulars of and the specific historical circumstances of three kinds of projects: an ethnographic modernist anthology; a scrapbook as a crossover historiographical form that blends cultural historiography and sentimental history; and, a narrativised photographic reportage as a new kinds of social writing.