Into the Archives: An RMIT Culture Salon Celebrating the AFIRC Research Fellowship

Date and time – Wed., 12/10/2022, 6:00 pm AEDT
Location – The Capitol 113 Swanston Street Melbourne, VIC 3000

For over 10 years, the AFI Research Collection Research Fellowship has supported scholars to delve into the wealth of the archive.

To celebrate the announcement of the recipient of the 2022 Research Fellowship, past fellows James Findlay (2021) and Jessica Balanzategui (2020) present their research, share the gems of Australian film & TV history they’ve uncovered within the archive, and screen a classic that asks the enigmatic question: Have you ever, ever felt like this?

Jessica will discuss key highlights from her AFIRC Fellowship, “Changing Children’s Television Genres in Australia and Changing Paradigms of Quality Child-Appropriate Television.” The project examines how the cultural and industrial landscape around children’s television transformed between 1960-2000, focusing on landmark shifts that impacted children’s genres and public perceptions of their “quality”. These developments include the introduction of the “C” (for children) rating in 1979 after five years of heated negotiations between government, policy, and industry, and the introduction of the Australian Children’s Television Foundation in 1982 and of children’s television standards in 1984.  Jessica will outline some of the policy and industry advocacy that drove these shifts, and trace how shifting expectations around children’s television in Australia played out in news media commentary. This presentation will illuminate some surprising controversies and public debates as children’s television developed into a robust and internationally renowned sector of the Australian screen industry.

James will be discussing his AFIRC Fellowship project, Framing the frontier: Australian settler colonialism on television after 1970, which examines television’s representation of Australian frontier history over the past 50 years. As a mythic arena of pioneering, invasion, celebration and violence, the frontier on screen evokes historical experiences deeply intertwined with changing ideas of race, gender, and the legitimacy of the colonial project. This research is highlighting how television drama and documentary has ascribed meaning to the processes and outcomes of settler colonialism for audiences as well as TV’s role in shaping and reshaping attitudes concerning the most urgent and contentious Australian histories.

A discussion and Q&A with host Stephen Gaunson will follow the presentations.
Free admission – book here

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