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The revelation of TV memories in The black power mixtape 1967-1975
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Media Studies.
2012 (English)Conference paper, Abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The Black Power Mixtape 1967-1975 (Göran Hugo Olsson, Sweden, 2011) presents fragmentary glimpses of black power history; images that were shot by Swedish filmmakers in the US for public broadcast in Sweden. This internationally praised compilation film has been a revelation to critics and audiences in terms of how an exotic, Swedish perspective on the black power movement produced a record that differed from related media representations in the American context. Even in Sweden the collage of archival material stands out as a reminder of the overlooked history of public television, and of the documentaries that brought narratives about war and international conflicts — via the two existing TV channels — into the homes of many Swedes.

The Black Power Mixtape depends on material compiled from the work by 27 filmmakers and reporters. Unfortunately, aside from these fragments, their points of view and their experiences as foreign filmmakers are only hinted at in the opening of the film. How was their working conditions and relationship to the Swedish broadcast corporation?

What propelled their interest in the Vietnam War and the civil right movement? These are interesting questions, indicating a blank not only in The Black Power Mixtape, but, more alarmingly, in the scholarly work on Swedish film and television history.

This paper aims at a correction of this situation. Aside from a closer view of Swedish documentaries made in the era of the Vietnam War, the contemporary production saga of The Black Power Mixtape will provide the point of departure for a more general reflection on compilation film, historical enactment, and social memory.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
documentary cinema, public broadcasting, compilation film, TV archive, cultural memory
National Category
Studies on Film
Research subject
Cinema Studies
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-95155OAI: diva2:658798
Visible Evidence XIX, Canberra, Australia, 19th-21st December, 2012.
"The Documentary Call for Action: War Protest, Solidarity Film and Public Broadcasting in Sweden 1962-1975
Swedish Research Council, 2011-39504-84631-34
Available from: 2013-10-22 Created: 2013-10-22 Last updated: 2015-12-22Bibliographically approved

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Wahlberg, Malin
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