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Researcher with a movie camera: visual ethnography in the field.

Raki?, Tijana; Chambers, Donna


Tijana Raki?

Donna Chambers


This paper seeks to ‘promote’ the use of moving image visual ethnography within tourism research while concurrently acknowledging the methodological and practical challenges inherent in the use of this method. The paper introduces Dziga Vertov's 1929 groundbreaking film ‘The Man With the Movie Camera’ and argues that a certain parallel can be drawn between the film and contemporary moving image visual ethnography in so far as the latter is, like Vertov's film, about the glimpses of the everyday as perceived by the researcher/filmmaker. Important within this context is the role of the ‘self’ of the researcher, something further explored through a case study of academic filmmaking, a project which investigates the construction and consumption of images of Greekness by visitors to the Athenian Acropolis. This case also highlights the practical challenges involved in adopting this method and investigates various filming techniques which could successfully be used by tourism researchers to either ‘collect data’ or create ethnographic documentaries, which can in turn be used for a range of other academic and pedagogic purposes. The paper concludes that being a ‘researcher with a movie camera’ although challenging can prove to be remarkably fruitful and rewarding, especially in the context of tourism studies.


Rakić, T., & Chambers, D. (2009). Researcher with a movie camera: visual ethnography in the field. Current Issues in Tourism, 12, 255-270.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date 2009-05
Deposit Date Nov 18, 2013
Print ISSN 1368-3500
Electronic ISSN 1747-7603
Publisher Routledge
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 12
Pages 255-270
Keywords visual ethnography; tourism; Dziga Vertov; Acropolis; constructivism
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