Observational montage: filming the transnational subject
This paper will discuss some epistemological issues that have arisen during pre-production research that I have carrying out to produce an ethnographic documentary on transnationalism. The documentary's narrative will focus on the subjective continuities and discontinuities suggested through the different social practices that transnational subjects engage in. The paper will focus on the use of contrasting cinematic techniques as a means of capturing and rendering a transnational field. The main protagonist of this documentary engages in meaningful relationships across different - and at times contradictory - historical, social, and national contexts. These different social practices suggest a juxtaposed consciousness that recalls the editing concept of montage. As such, montage can be explored as a possibility to address disparate elements that converge in the transnational subject. I will also consider the value of 'observational cinema', as it pertains to maintaining a time/space integrity as a means to capture the immediacy of the moment. This paper will explore the possibilities of an 'observational montage' as a resource in studying the habitus of a transnational social field.