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Faking It: Mock-Documentary and the Subversion of Factuality

by Jane Roscoe and Craig Hight Manchester University Press
Pub Date:
Pbk 232 pages
AU$34.99 NZ$36.51
Product Status: Available in Approx 5 days
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Faking it offers the first major study of mock-documentary – one of a number of screen forms that play with the assumed boundaries between 'fact' and 'fiction'. The authors examine mock-documentary through the specific relationship which the form constructs with documentary.

This is part of a wider discussion of the increasingly fragile association between factual codes and conventions and the discourses which underpin the documentary genre. Their analysis includes detailed discussions of a number of key mock-documentary texts, ranging from Woody Allen's Zelig, Peter Greenaway's The Falls, and the Beatles spoof The Rutles through to such classic examples as Bob Roberts, This is Spinal Tap and Man Bites Dog.

Wide-ranging and interrogative, Faking it opens out this relatively new media form and by doing so throws light on the status of the documentary itself.

Introduction: Mock-documentary and the subversion of factuality
1. Factual discourse and the cultural placing of documentary
2. Recent transformations of the documentary genre
3. A cousin for the drama-documentary: Situating the mock-documentary
4. Building a mock-documentary schema
5. A suggested genealogy
6. Degree one: parody
7. Degree two: critique and hoax
8. Degree three: deconstruction

Craig Hight is a Lecturer in the Department of Screen and Media Studies, Waikato University, New Zealand.

Jane Roscoe teaches in the School of Film, Media and Cultural Studies, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia.