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Research The Groningen Research Institute for the Study of Culture (ICOG) Research Research centres Research Centre for Arts in Society

FACAM book launch - LALIV MELAMED (University of Groningen): "Sovereign Intimacy" (with Sara Strandvad & Jennifer Schnepf)

When:Tu 25-04-2023 18:00 - 20:00
Where:Exposition room, Harmonie building
FACAM colloquium programme poster

This event is part of the Film and Contemporary Audiovisual Media research colloquium of the Research Centre for Arts in Society.

For more information, contact Giuseppe Fidotta: g.fidotta


In the early 1990s, Israeli television began dedicating Memorial Day air time to videos produced by the grieving families of soldiers killed in the line of duty. When these videos first appeared during a period of growing Israeli discontent with the occupation of southern Lebanon, they were widely perceived as a challenge to the state, reclaiming the dead from Israel’s militaristic memory culture by resituating them in intimate domestic contexts via mediated commemorations.

By tracing an emerging private media system of freelance filmmaking, privatized television, state institutes of care, and grassroots campaigns, Laliv Melamed reveals how these videos nevertheless evade a fundamental critique of Israeli militarism, which is instead invited into the familiar space of the home. These intimate connections of memory and media exploit bonds of kinship and reshape larger relationships between the state and its citizens, enabling a collective disavowal of colonial violence. In Sovereign Intimacy, Laliv Melamed offers a poignant and critical view of the weaponization of home media and mourning in service of the neoliberal settler state.

About the speakers

Laliv Melamed is an assistant professor at the University of Groningen. Her research focuses on the intersection between emerging media and governance, and documentary’s political imaginaries. Her writings appeared in JCMS: Journal of Cinema and Media Studies, Discourse, Millenium Film Journal, and NECSUS among others. In addition to her academic practice, Melamed is a film curator and a senior programmer at Docaviv FF. Her book Sovereign Intimacy: Private Media and the Traces of Colonial Violence will be published in early 2023 from University of California Press.

Sara Malou Strandvad is Associate Professor (with tenure track to Full Professor) in Arts Sociology at the Department of Arts, Culture and Media at University of Groningen and chair of the section on Arts, Policy and Cultural Entrepreneurship. A sociologist whose research concerns creative work and production studies, her research research includes a study of development processes in Danish film production based on a socio-material perspective inspired by science and technology studies, a study of the valuation processes in a design school entrance exam, and a study of cultural entrepreneurship training for self-employed Dutch artists, funded by a NWO KIEM-grant.

Jennifer D. Schnepf is Assistant Professor of American Studies at the University of Groningen, Netherlands. Her current research focuses on contemporary cultures of US imperialism, consumer technology, and militarization. Her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Feminist Media Studies, Media and Environment, American Literature, and Catalyst: Feminism, Theory, Technoscience, and other venues. She is currently at work on a book that traces the circuit between atmospheric technologies and domestic culture with a focus on "women's work." She holds a PhD in English from Brown University.