SourcesA radical paradigm shift from traditional industrial production to immaterial production in the last thirty year has ushered in a period of “Post-Fordist” economy. As Gilles Deleuze noted, this transformation was accompanied by the corresponding shift from the discipline of Fordist societies to present day societies of control. The concept of collectivity and all the notions connected with the idea of the collective are also affected by this change. Notions such as “the people” or “the masses” must be reconsidered from the standpoint of the idea of multitude, as Paolo Virno argues: “The two polarities, people and multitude, have Hobbes and Spinoza as their putative fathers. For Spinoza, the multitudo indicates a plurality which persists as such in the public scene, in collective action, in the handling of communal affairs, without converging into a One, without evaporating within a centripetal form of motion. Multitude is the form of social and political existence for the many, seen as being many: a permanent form, not an episodic or interstitial form. For Spinoza, the multitudo is the architrave of civil liberties (Spinoza,Tractatus Politicus, 1677)” [from Virno P., A Grammar of the Multitude: For an Analysis of Contemporary Forms of Life, (NY: Semiotext(e), 2004) p.21].
Genealogies of practice
- VIDEO NATION, (UK / Reino Unido) BBC
As camcorders became cheap and easy to use in the 1980s and ‘90s, amateur or home video recordings became very popular. In 1993 Chris Mohr and Mandy Rose of the BBC’s Community Programmes Unit founded the Video Nation project. Fifty people across the UK were given Hi-8 camcorders and training and recorded aspects of everyday life during the course of a year. During Video Nation’s first decade, ten thousand tapes were shot and 1,300 shorts were screened on TV. Video Nation followed the precedent of the Mass Observation Project launched in Britain in the 1930s, which focused on the observation of the working classes’ everyday life, generating alternatives to the then dominant media representations. The main feature of the Video Nation project, which set it apart from the “reality tv” format, was that camcorders and training were given to participants who wanted to record their own video-diaries and join public life as political subjects in their own right. The project migrated to the web in 2001 and continues today in a new format as Video Nation Network, an archive where all the recordings that were screened may be accessed for free.