You call this archaeology?: Exploring Film History Through Fandom as Pedagogy

Date

2020

Advisors

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

ISSN

1941-2258

DOI

Volume Title

Publisher

Organization for Transformative Works

Type

Article

Peer reviewed

Yes

Abstract

This multidisciplinary paper explores the exciting and potentially perilous terrain of how to engage learners effectively, in this instance, with film history, a topic they can consider ‘not so sexy’. Utilising pedagogical theory around experiential learning (Kolb, 2015) and threshold concepts (Mayer and Land, 2003); work on interpretive archaeology (Shanks and Hodder, 1995), and theories of fan engagement and its pedagogical potential (Larsen and Zubernis (2012) and Howell (2018)), alongside a theory of language, cognition and learning known as Relational Frame Theory, and the author’s experience of designing and delivering a research-focused, undergraduate film history module, this article examines the benefits of exploring history experientially. This article contends that direct, physical engagement with cinema-related, ‘fannish’ physical objects, creating what Gee refers to as an ‘affinity space’, inspires a more invested response from learners to broader related contexts, or, in Cousin’s (2006) terms, they increase the learner’s ‘emotional capital’, maximising the chances of learners engaging coherently and creatively with the principles, theories & methodologies of their chosen discipline. Building on existing work on fan studies pedagogy such as Booth (2018), Wright contends that encouraging learners to self-identify as ‘fans’ shifts the power balance, placing the learner in the position of expert, increasing the chances of learner engagement and academic success and making for a more invested, lively and varied learning and teaching experience.

Description

The file attached to this record is the author's final peer reviewed version

Keywords

Pedgogy, New cinema History, Archaeology, Material culture, film studies, relational frame, interpretive archaeology, experiential learning, threshold concepts

Citation

Wright, E. (2020) 'You call this archaeology?': Exploring Film History Through Fandom as Pedagogy. Transformative Works and Cultures,

Rights

Research Institute

Cinema and Television History Institute (CATHI)