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Accepted Paper:

Random Encounters between Anthropology and Cinema  
Amaya Sumpsi (Universidade Nova de Lisboa)

Paper short abstract:

As I was filming my field work during 7 years, in a fisherman community in Azores Islands, planning interviews and focusing in observational frameworks, I realized that were the unexpected an unplanned moments that made the point of my documentary work, "O fisherman , my Oldman!" (2013).

Paper long abstract:

In March 2018, as a member of NAVA (Núcleo de Antropologia Visual e das aArtes- CRIA center of investigation) , I coordinated a work session under the title "Random Encounters between Cinema and Anthropology".

In this session, my purpose was to talk about these random moments that many times break up when we are filming and researching, and how they, given enough space to grow, can become a precious moment of enlightment. As an example, I showed a little fragment of my film "o fisherman, my oldman" (2013), where through 7 years of filming observational frames and deep in interviews with several members of a fishermen community in Azores Islands, some random and informal moments happened in front of the camera that opened new and essential gaps in the community representation. The unexpected character of the moment was reflected in the way the camera (and myself) moved, disoriented, forgetting the importance of the light and the framework so to focus on the encounter´s essence. Despite the sequences' low image quality, they appear in the final documentary as some of the most significant moments, avoiding me a narrative based mainly in interviews.

For this work session, I invited Glaura Cardoso Vale (, Brasil), Catarina Alves Costa, former coordinator of NAVA, and Rodrigo Lacerda, NAVA PHD student, to bring some examples of these "random encounters" from different ethnographic films. Some of the thoughts brought up during this session will also be present in my paper.

Panel P075
Grace: unexpected moments in ethnographic films
  Session 1 Wednesday 15 August, 2018, -