Rescheduled: Dana Mustata on Material Historiographies
In her presentation, Dana Mustata will introduce her VENI project ‘Everyday Matters. Material Historiographies of Television in Cold War Contexts’, which studies relations between Romanian television and the BBC through the lens of material artifacts.
Drawing upon material culture approaches, theories of practice and design analyses of broadcast artifacts, she will propose ‘material historiography’ as a novel way of doing television history bottom-up, that allows to tap into ‘hidden’ or ‘silenced histories’ that have been inherently produced by television in coercive political contexts.
In her talk, Dana Mustata will attempt to theorize this new method of doing television history, arguing that material historiography: 1) is a suitable tool for studying television’s everydayness, which television scholars have decried as lost and ephemeral, but which contains stories that go beyond the realm of institutionalized, documented historical sources; 2) divorces histories of television from histories of the nation, necessary in the context of socialist television which has predominantly been reduced to histories of political control and isolation; 3) allows ‘seeing the familiar strange’ in transnational television history, through the distance produced by the critical investigation of taken-for-granted artifacts, which will render the West as unfamiliar as the East in European television history.