Recently in Meta - Info about this blog Category

With deep regret, I've had to implement a filter that block all IP traffic originating from Chinese internet service providers. This affects all of the websites and blogs under my control. The reason for this was that I was getting an inordinate amount of web traffic from those IP ranges. These were likely not legitimate traffic but instead spam and/or hacking attempts.

With 25-50 gigabytes of traffic a day, my website provider was going to charge me over $1000 a month in bandwidth over-usage costs, even after I had upgraded to one of their high-volume contracts. I just couldn't afford this.

Since implementing the block, web traffic has plummeted back to normal levels.

20130522 PairBandwidth

Just a quick note that I'm giving a talk tomorrow afternoon at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. Just landed here and it's truly like another planet. Having my own Jane Carter moment….

DISABILITY OF THE SOUL | Thursday, April 12, 2012 2:00 PM BEH S Room 114

[read more]
Event Date: Thu, 12 Apr 2012 2:00 PM MDT


By Karen Nakamura
Associate Professor
of Anthropology and East Asian Studies,
Yale University

For the past several years, Prof. Nakamura has been conducting research within an intentional community of people with severe mental illnesses in northern Japan. Founded in 1984 on Christian principles, Bethel House attempts to create a space where people with schizophrenia and other psychiatric disorders can live within
the community.

Like other utopias, Bethel is not without its flaws but it also has much to teach us in its approach to mental illness and community life. A visual and cultural anthropologist, Prof. Nakamura's work explores through image and text what it means to live with psychiatric and other disabilities in contemporary Japan.

If spam wasn't enough, my machines are also getting hit by hackers trying to get through the sshd port:
Jun  5 00:35:31 kyoto sshd[59150]: Invalid user prueba from
Jun  5 00:35:32 kyoto sshd[59152]: Invalid user postgres from
Jun  5 00:35:32 kyoto sshd[59154]: Invalid user postgres from
Jun  5 00:35:33 kyoto sshd[59156]: Invalid user postgres from
Jun  5 00:35:34 kyoto sshd[59158]: Invalid user postgres from
Jun  5 00:35:34 kyoto sshd[59160]: Invalid user postgres from
Jun  5 00:35:35 kyoto sshd[59162]: Invalid user postgres from
Jun  5 00:35:36 kyoto sshd[59164]: Invalid user postgres from
Jun  5 00:35:37 kyoto sshd[59170]: Invalid user postgres from
Jun  5 00:35:37 kyoto sshd[59172]: Invalid user postgres from
Jun  5 00:35:38 kyoto sshd[59174]: Invalid user postgres from
Jun  5 00:35:39 kyoto sshd[59176]: Invalid user hadoop from
Jun  5 00:35:39 kyoto sshd[59178]: Invalid user hadoop from
Jun  5 00:35:40 kyoto sshd[59180]: Invalid user hadoop from
Jun  5 00:35:41 kyoto sshd[59182]: Invalid user hadoop from
I've installed denyhost, let's hope that it can work to cut back on some of this nonsense.

Sorry for the long hiatus from this blog. After the tsunami hit in Northern Japan, I was in a tizzy of activity and then several other things happened after that. I should be posting more regularly from now on.

My blogs have been getting hit by a tidal wave of comment spam written in Chinese. I've had to turn off anonymous commenting. You can still write in comments by logging in with any one of a number of authentication systems (Facebook, mixi, yahoo, MovableType, OpenID, LJ, etc. etc.).

Spending the last month writing has resulted in my carpal tunnel syndrome flaring up again. Now I have it in both wrists. Typing, mousing, and now driving are painful.

I now have braces on both my hands, which truly sucks.

I just ordered a new ergonomic mouse, we'll see if that helps. I may try switching keyboards as well.

The good news is that MacSpeech Dictate which used to be really bad has improved over the last few versions. It now has correction and learning capabilities, which makes it actually usable. I am using with my Sampson Go Mic, which is a huge improvement over the cheap headsets that I've used previously.

I am now using speech recognition for my e-mail correspondence. Unfortunately, Dictate is still not quite fast or accurate enough for writing academic text. But maybe after some more training it will get better or, I will get laryngitis.

My contract for my original iPhone 3G is up and I'm in the market for a new smartphone. I'm currently kind of pissed at Apple because the iOS 4.0 update really crippled my iPhone 3G, rendering it impossibly slow. This is the kind of crud that Microsoft used to pull (Vista, anyone?) and I'm kind of getting sick of the closed environment that iOS represents.

Nonetheless, the iPhone 4 is a huge temptation, as is the couldn't-be-worse-named iPad.  One consideration is that I almost never do voice calls -- maybe 15 minutes a month, tops. So there, the iPad's data-only plan is good. But it's way too large. If I could get the iPad data plan with the iPhone form factor.... (and no, an iPod Touch wouldn't work since it doesn't have mobile data, which I need).

Anyway, so I guess I'm really forced into a smartphone. Any thoughts gentle readers on the Droid X and Evo 4G?  New Haven isn't a Wimax/4g city so the Evo's greatest feature is worthless here.

Found a useful infographic online:






Any and all thoughts welcome.

Jason -- what are you running these days?

Apparently, our little blog got into the Top 40 Anthropology Blog list.


Top Anthropology Blog
Online PhD


However, I'm entirely unclear as to whether this is spam or not.  Gentle readers, please advise.


I was trying to access the Department of Labor (USA) in order to get information on employment conditions for people with disabilities and the site requires a password -- even for the top page?

Weird. I ended up getting the data from

Cornell's ILR school has organized the BLS data in a much more accessible fashion:

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

NYLUG '10: Colloquium in Photography


Photoethnography, Visual Anthropology, and the Leica

The invention of the first Leica camera in 1913 ushered in new
possibilities for naturalistic photography. Heavy tripod-mounted
wooden cameras could be replaced by Oskar Barnack’s pocketable little
brass wonder. Dozens of bulky film plates could be exchanged for a
single interchangeable film cartridge. New vistas for street and
field photography were opened up. Anthropologists were early adopters
of this technology to bring back images from across the world. It is
remarkable that almost a hundred years later we are still using the
same film in much the same film cartridge that Oskar Barnack
originally developed.

Karen Nakamura is a cultural and visual anthropologist of Japan.
An assistant professor of anthropology at Yale University, she has
written an award-winning ethnography titled Deaf in Japan. She is
known as the creator of the website and has also
filmed and edited two ethnographic films.

In this presentation, Karen will be talking about how the history of
visual anthropology, how she uses her Leica cameras in her fieldwork,
and share some of the photographs that she has taken in Japan,
Malaysia, China, and the United States.


School of the International Center of Photography
1114 Avenue of the Americas (6th Avenue and 43rd Street)
New York City

Date and Time:
Saturday, May 22 at 5:30PM

For more information:

Well, down with the Austin Flu, I installed MT 5.01 on the blog today. Of course the upgrade didn't go as smoothly as promised and all the stylesheets broke, but that is now par for the course for me. Fixed everything up and it should be running OK now.

The only significant user change that should be visible is that you can now login with your Facebook login as an authentication method, along with several other ID providers. I guess OpenID is never going to take on as planned, but it's nice to see that SixApart is trying to accept as many authentication tokens as they can.

Oh, and rebuilding the site does genuinely seem a tiny little bit faster with MT5. I spoke too fast! For some reason, rebuilding my entire site has ground to a halt. It now takes over 25 minutes for an entire rebuild, whereas previously it didn't seem that slow. Not sure what is going on here.

I'm very happy to announce that is now distributing my film, Bethel: Community and Schizophrenia in Northern Japan, as a DVD, streaming rental, or streaming purchase!

I'm hoping that using Amazon as a distribution source rather than the standard educational film distribution companies will mean that more people will be able to get access to the film at a lower cost.


A portrait of some of our current and former Japan anthropology zemi students at the 2009 American Anthropological Association meeting in Philadelphia.

From left to right, back to front:

  • Karen Nakamura (2001): Disability in Japan
  • Nathaniel Smith (2010): Right Wing Groups in Japan
  • Sarah Le Baron von Bayer (2014): Brazilians in Japan
  • Allison Alexy (2008): Divorce in Japan
  • Annie Claus (2014): Okinawa in Japan

Missing from this portrait are William Kelly (1980): Baseball in Japan, Ellen Rubinstein (2012): Hikikomori in Japan, and Elizabeth Miles (2010 M.A.): Masculinity in Japan .

Just a note that the annual meeting of the American Anthropological Association will be held next week in Philadelphia. I'll be in Philly starting Tuesday as part of the Society for Visual Anthropology conference which starts right before it.

Which reminds me, the SVA is cosponsoring an exhibit called Ethnographic Terminalia:

Ethnographic Terminalia

The Icebox Project Space at Crane Arts will feature an innovative group exhibition entitled Ethnographic Terminalia from December 2-20, 2009. Scheduled to coincide with the annual meeting of the American Anthropological Association, this year in Philadelphia, the curators have brought together an international group of artists and ethnographers who are actively engaged in experimental and emergent cultural forms. Visitors are invited to join in a multisensorial happening that challenges the boundaries and borders that demarcate the margins of ethnographic, anthropological, and art practices. In this exhibition, a diverse group of artists and anthropologists present boundary troubling works in eleven separate installations. Each installation project in Ethnographic Terminalia offers a thought provoking and playful (or agitating) alternative to considering what lies both beyond and within imagined and constructed boundaries of the skilled practices of artists and ethnographers.

This exhibition features original works by: Trudi-Lynn Smith; Erica Lehrer and Hannah Smotrich; Kate Hennessy and Oliver Neumann; Marko and Gordana Zivkovic; Chris Fletcher; Roderick Coover; Jayasinhji Jhala; Craig Campbell; Mike Evans and Stephen Foster; Stephanie Spray; and Scott and Jen Webel. While these works are deployed within the rubric of anthropology they answer visual and aesthetic questions in unique and particular fashion, decentering the priviledged categories of both ethnography and art through various mediums.
According to the curatorial team: “This exhibit will be of great interest not only to professional anthropologists but other publics as well. By drawing the studied methodologies of ethnography into a familiar art environment this collective exhibition delivers an all too uncommon challenge to disciplinary and professional boundaries. By engaging with the politics of representation, memory, documentation, and archive Ethnographic Terminalia will impress upon all visitors their own stake in the interpretation of cultural worlds.” The works presented in Ethnographic Terminalia address the possibility of showing and interpreting cultural worlds outside of the traditional cinematic, museological, and textual frameworks of Cultural Anthroplogy while challenging the art world to consider the sensuous complexities and textures of everyday life.

Visit the website for more details about the show:

Exhibition Opening Reception & Shindig

4 December 2009 7:30-10.00pm


Location: Icebox Project Space at Crane Arts, Philadelphia (PA)

1400 N. American Street

December 2-20, 2009

Wednesday to Saturday 12pm-6pm

Entry is free


Craig Campbell, University of Texas at Austin (Austin, Texas)
Anabelle Rodriguez, Temple University (Philadelphia, PA)
Fiona McDonald, University College London (London, England)

Organizational Team:
Kate Hennessy, University of British Columbia (Vancouver, BC)
Stephanie Takaragawa, Chapman University (Orange, CA)

Meta: Snow Leopard problems

| | Comments (2)

Upgraded to Snow Leopard (Mac OSX 10.6) and so far things are smooth with some exceptions:

  • My favorite utility, QuickSilver would no longer launch. Finally figured out that I not only had to trash the preferences file in the ~/Library/Preferences folder, but also the entire application support folder in ~/Library/ApplicationSupport/Quicksilver.
  • Dymo Label doesn't work and there's no driver until "the early Fall which is December in developer speak. Not good.
  • 1Password doesn't work under Safari unless you get their secret beta version 3.
  • VMWare Fusion also needs to be updated

And one of my buds had problems with -- turned out that RSS feed prefs didn't transfer over well from 10.5. He trashed them and it started working again.

You know when you're procrastinating when you find out the only good anagram for your name is "Ran a Karma Nuke."

Buying a Kindle

| | Comments (1)

Well, the little iPhone Kindle app has convinced me that a Kindle2 might not be a total waste of money. I'm actually enjoying read both academic and non-academic books on the iPhone. Although the Kindle2 doesn't have a backlight, it looks like it'd be a good way to read before bed or on the airplane.

I wish the Kindle2 had WiFi, I guess that -- along with the backlight -- is my big concern for the unit. Especially as Sprint might be going bankrupt if it continues to bleed customers like it is now. I wonder what will happen to the Kindle's EVDO if that happens....

I'd love to hear from anyone who has one.

I'm setting up a media server in the anthropology department using Mac OSX 10.5 Server. With the demise of the C-Labs service, I wanted a secure way to make streaming video available for in-class use. The Mac OS X Leopard Server was an obvious choice.

Right now, I'm just using flat files and the Mac OSX Server built-in Apache server. In order to restrict the streams to just Yale students, I wanted to limit the contents of certain directories to just Yale IP addresses.

This should be easily done using .htaccess files. However, the default configuration doesn't have .htaccess services turned on (since it is server / file system intensive to do so). However, I couldn't for the life of me to get the Apache server to recognize my modifications in the /etc/httpd/httpd.conf file. ARGHH!!! It was almost as if it was ignoring it.

Meta: Upgraded to MT 4.23

| | Comments (1)

I upgraded our blogs to MovableType 4.23. I was panicked for a second since it looked like I had crashed the blogs badly and couldn't either upgrade or backout to the originals. What had happened was a typical n00b mistake in UNIX, I had copied the files to the mt-static directory but had accidentally copied the folder itself, not the contents, so for a while I had a directory named:


with all the files in it and I couldn't figure out why it didn't work. Duh.

p.s. I wish MT did more sanity checking for idiots like me. :-)

Merry Christmas

| | Comments (0)

Merry Christmas!

(Via BoingBoing)

My partner and I watched in disbelief reports of 3-7 hour waits at early voting polling stations -- with estimates that the lines will be even longer on Tuesday itself.

My partner asked me if Tuesday was a national holiday so that people could go vote. She was doubly astonished that it wasn't a holiday, so that people would have to take off work in order to vote.

Rachel Maddow is right on target when she calls the long lines at Southern polling stations a new form of the racist system of poll-taxes. The only people who can afford to take off an entire day to go vote are those in white collar professional jobs.

Obligatory Japan content: In Japan, I've never had to wait more than 5 minutes to vote. And this was for a country where we don't use electronic voting machines but good old paper and pen.

An article in The Economist (Oct 17, 2008) on the author's grudging transition to digital photography from film mentions's take of the venerable Leica IIIf.

I'm sure somewhere in the universe, 10 msecs of fame have been debited from my account.

Fido Gets Motorcycle Side-Car (Aug, 1931): "

Ohmigosh, I have to build this for Momo.

(Via Modern Mechanix.)

I upgraded the blog engine to MT 4.1.1 and added the iNT plugin which allows for easy blog posts from your iPhone, like this one!

I'm very pleased to welcome a new guest blogger on, Jason C Romero. Many of you have already seen his comments on this blog, or read material that he sent my way. I'm very happy that he agreed to become a guest author and I personally look forward to seeing his posts!

JR gave me a heads up that my FeedBurner subscription broke when I upgraded to MT4.1. It looks like one of the softlinks went stale and FB wasn't getting new data. I've relinked it so it should work now.....

Meta: Akeelah quote

| | Comments (1)

Akeelah and the Bee is an incredibly touching and powerful film about a young African Ameican girl who is inspired to succeed through the help of her community and friends. I love the quote at the center of the film:

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, 'Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?' Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

Apparently it's by Marianne Williamson.

Hmmm.... I took this online Aspberger's Test and scored a 38....... which puts me above "extreme."

All of my friends are silently going "duhhhhhhhhhh!" behind my back.

Last weekend, my dog and I helped with our neighborhood cleanup. We made the April 17th, 2008 issue of the New Haven Independent newspaper:


Just a small note that I upgraded this blog to MovableType 4.1. I think the process was rather smooth , but just to be sure -- try commenting on this entry to see if the comment mechanism works. If it doesn't, please e-mail me!

1:45pm Hmmm.... something is wrong with the commenting system. The previous anti-spam mechanism is incompatible w/ MT4.1.

1:52pm Now set up anonymous posting w/ reCaptchas.

1:58pm Accidentally nuked the old version 2.x stylesheets that I had been dragging around forever. Had to use a default 4.1 style to get everything working again. Boring!

I'm very pleased to be able to announce that my book Deaf in Japan (Cornell University Press) was awarded the 2008 John Whitney Hall Prize at the Association for Asian Studies 2008 Annual Meeting in Atlanta, Georgia.

Below is a photo of me with my wonderful editor, Roger Haydon, of Cornell University Press at the conference.


Sigh, I can't help myself:

Momosuke in Virginia with his snazzy new sports jacket.

We just welcomed the newest member of our house: Momosuke Nakamura.


He's just 2 months old and weighs 2.0 kg (4.4 lbs)!

Meta: "Deaf in Japan" reviews

| | Comments (0)

Well, they finally came out .... reviews of my book Deaf in Japan: Signing and the Politics of Japan (Cornell University Press 2006). One in the Journal of Japanese Studies and the other in Social Science Japan Journal:

  1. Steven Fedorowicz writes in SSJJ (
    On the back cover of the book, Cornell University Press classifies Nakamura’s work as Asian Studies and Anthropology (rather than Deaf Studies or Sign Language Studies), and this is quite appropriate. While keeping her focus on deaf people, Nakamura also places them within the wider contexts of Japanese history, politics and society through comparisons and connections with other Japanese minorities and social movements.
  2. Carolyn Stevens writes in JJS (
    Nakamura’s methodology combines the field techniques of anthropology, archival research, and the political analysis of social movements to gather information on deaf movements in Japan in the postwar era, with the goal of understanding what it means to subscribe to “deaf identity” in Japan. She frequently includes cross-cultural perspectives from international deaf movements and language systems to contextualize the Japanese case, as well as poses thoughtful and provocative questions about personal and communal identities by comparing the Japanese deaf community to other minority groups in Japan.

Both reviewers had very insightful comments about my work ... and they didn't thrash it which is a big relief. Phew! There's another review coming up in Sign Language Studies by a noted Japanese Deaf scholar which I'm looking forward to.

Well, I'm finishing up my week in Honshu and it's back to Hokkaido on Monday morning.

I recently gave a talk at a symposium during the 4th annual meeting of the Japan Disability Studies association. It was held on September 17-18th at Kyoto's Ritsumeikan University.

There's a short article in the Kyoto News:

I recently took a trip to Awaji Island to visit the earthquake museum there (see other blog post) among other things. It's a 200 km round trip by car from Itami City in Hyogo Prefecture (where I'm staying this week) and I decided to rent a Toyoto Prius.


The rental cost ¥10,500 for the day; the tolls were ¥7800; and (drumroll) the gasoline only cost ¥1350 for 10 liters. That works out to 20 km / liter or about 47 mpg! According to the car's computer, the average mileage was 23 km/liter or 53 mpg. I think the discrepancy is because the tank may have been a little less than full when I picked it up (and reset the odometer/drive computer). **

** The exchange rate is ¥113 to US$1 and plummeting.

In any case, let's take the average to be: 50 mpg.

This was for mixed city / highway / island / mountain driving with four passengers. Wow.

Everything I had heard about the Prius: poor acceleration, poor visibility, little luggace space, jerky braking, mileage not as high as advertised, etc. proved not to be true. The acceleration was great, visibility is fantastic (especially with the back view LCD monitor/camera), there was more space in the back than I thought, and I couldn't tell when the car was using ICE, electric motors, or regenerative braking -- it was that smooth.

I'm totally in love.

Sign me up for one when I get back.

I'm happy to report that my film Bethel successfully screened at the Disabled People's International World Assembly in Seoul, South Korea on Friday afternoon. The screening went very well and we had an extended Q&A period afterwards with myself and one of the Bethel members who had come for the opening.


Apparently the entire website (along with the blog) crashed this weekend due to complications from a server upgrade. Apparently while the old server had no problem parsing an .HTACCESS file with Mac style linebreaks, the new web server choked on it and blocked all access to files.

I guess it was our fault for having a malformed .HTACCESS file...

Sorry for the inconvenience everyone!

Meta: In Japan

| | Comments (0)

For the folks who haven't figured it out, I'm right in the middle of fieldwork in Japan. I don't have internet at home and occasionally check it during the week, so I most probably won't be able to update this blog much for the next couple of months!

Nakamura-ImperialPalace.jpgI'm leaving soon for some more fieldwork in Japan and won't be able to maintain this blog on a daily basis as before. One of the time-consuming tasks that I do each day is checking through the comments and getting rid of the dozens of spam comments that are posted.

I'm implementing on an experimental basis a CAPTCHA type spam filter for comment posts. Before you post a comment, you'll now be required to type the word 'camera' in the anti-spam comment field. Most spam robots won't know how to do this, and their junk spam will get filtered out automatically.

Please give it a spin -- please add a comment to this entry saying whether you like it or not! If I don't get any comments, I'll know it's either broken or stinks!

I've uploaded a two minute trailer for Bethel: Community and Schizophrenia in Northern Japan onto a new website I've dedicated for Bethel publicity:

Please enjoy!

A reporter from Kyodo News has been interviewing me the past several months about Bethel, looks like a translation of the original story made the English section of the Kyodo website:

I hate how they have to post my age!


Hi Karen,

My name is Loren and I'm a media grad student and documentary filmmaker in Buffalo, NY who stumbled across your blog some time ago and have been following it for a while now. I have some technical questions about the film you just finished since I know you're working in the HDV format and am currently working on a full length doc in HDV as well.

What I'm wondering, assuming your shooting ratio for the project was relatively high, is what kind of workflow you used to deal with all the material? Could you maybe do a post describing it for your blog?

Anything from whether you used native HDV or an intermediate codec for editing, software / hardware issues you ran into that were frustrating, and hd delivery format for festivals (if you're using one) to whether you captured / logged your tapes at night during the time you were shooting or left the capturing / logging process entirely until after you had completed filming.

Your blog gives a lot of insight into the tools that you use and I'd love to hear more details about both your experience shooting ethnographic documentary in HDV and your overall production process.


My Workflow

In the field, I usually operate as a one-person crew. If I'm lucky, my partner can help me with a second camera and do interviews, but usually I am by myself. Sound is important to me, so I try to use wireless lav mics or use dual-system sound with a digital audio recorder. I shoot everything to HDV and label each cassette with the date, sequence number, and topic, and camera name. For example: 20051221b-BETHEL – Canon is the second tape I shot on December 21st, 2005 at the Bethel Community using my Canon XL-H1.

DVD Jacket.jpg

I write daily fieldnotes and I note the tape numbers in my fieldnotes where possible. Otherwise, I just correlate them later by date and time. I don't otherwise have time to log and review tapes in the field. I also carry a very minimal fieldkit which doesn't include a preview monitor (except the one built-into the camera). This has led to some problems -- noticeably that I have fluorescent flickering in some sequences of Bethel because Hokkaido uses a different power frequency than western Japan. This was not noticed until I went into post.

After the first fieldwork period, I went through the tapes that I knew had core material and I made a rough cut with them in SD mode (standard def using the built-in downconverter on the XL-H1). I sequenced a few shots together in iMovie to get a sense of what the film could be about. This gave me a sense of what I was missing (hospital life, community activities, etc.). When I went back to the field again, I shot those additional sequences.

Back home, I organized and logged all of the tapes. I had about 40 hours of tape for the two shoots in Hokkaido. Since the film is about 60 minutes long, that's a 40:1 shooting ratio. Pretty high, but I'm not very skilled. I captured and logged everything into Final Cut Pro. With each hour of HDV about 8 gigabytes, the 40 hours fit fairly well onto a 500 gibabyte hard drive that I dedicated to this project. Since i was using Final Cut Pro HDV, I stayed with the HDV codec rather than converting to a HD or intermediate codec that would take up much more space on the hard drive. The trade-off was some additional processing time, but the Quad-Core Mac Pro made that less important than it could've been.

Logging all the tape was a major pain and a major project. My partner Hisako helped here too. :-)

From there, we went through the tape logs and highlighted what we thought were key sequences. I storyboarded some of them on the corkboard in my office. And then I made some rough sequences and patched them together.

Right now, I'm outputting and distributing the various rough cuts to standard-def DVDs. I am editing in HDV and only downconverting at the final moment in Compressor. The resolution of the standard def DVDs that I'm burning isn't quite as high as I'd like -- I understand that there is some magic involved in getting Compressor to downconvert HDV into SD properly. In any case, I'm excited that the latest version of Compressor handles burning HD formats to DVD-Rs for playback on HD-DVD drives, so as soon as the prices drop on those, I'll implement that into my output formats.

So I'm starting to get the first round of ding letters from the various film festivals that I applied to last year.* One of the things I hadn't realized going into this was just how competitive the film festival market is. One festival I applied to received 1700 films, and they could screen less than a hundred (including shorts).

*In the next few months, we're also sending ding/acceptance letters for job searches as well as applications to the PhD program.

This means that the chances of getting into a film festival (assuming random probability, which it isn't) is 1:17. That would mean it's harder to get into a competitive film festival than it is to get into Yale College! :-)

Here are some other acceptance to application ratios in my experience: Yale anthropology PhD program 1:20; academic journal ratio 1:5 (?roughly¿); anthro teaching job 1:150. So getting into a film festival isn't as hard as getting a job, but ranks up there!

Meta: Buried.....

| | Comments (1)

I'm sorry that I haven't blogged in a while, but I've been buried by work. I'm slowly digging my way out so look for future posts coming soon! - KN

I'm planning on entering my film Bethel: Community and Schizophrenia in Northern Japan to several ethnographic and documentary film festivals next year. I've been searching for information on places to enter, and here's the short list that I came up with. If you have any suggestions or comments, please send them in!

Festival Name
Info / Status
Montreal Ethnographic Film Festival Jan 26-28 Nov 1 (2006) (2006 festival). Submitted. Withdrawn.
Portland Intl Film Festival Feb 5-17 Nov 15 (2006) Submitted. Dinged.
Through Women's Eyes Feb 23-26 Nov 13 (2006) Submitted. Rejected.
Reel Women's Intl Film Festival Mar 8-12 Nov 15 (2006) Submitted. Rejected.
Ann Arbor Film Festival Mar 20-25 Nov 22 (2006) Submitted. Dinged.
Full Frame Documentary Film Festival Apr 12-15 Nov 30 (2006) Submitted. Dinged.
Nashville Film Festival Apr 19-26 Oct 26 (2006) Submitted. Dinged.
Brooklyn Arts Council May 5-15 Nov 22 (2006) Submitted.
Hong Kong International Film Festival Mar 3-Nov4 Dec 15 /
Jan 7 Did not enter.

United Nations
Documentary Film Festival

Apr 21 - 22 Submitted. Dinged.

Royal Anthropological Institute
Ethnographic Film Festival

Jun 27 - July 1 Jan 12 Submitted. Dinged.
Women's Independent Cinema Oct 1-31 Nov 22 (2006) Submitted.
Women's Independent Cinema Oct 1-31 Nov 22 (2006) Submitted.
Seattle International Film Festival May 24-June 17 Submitted. Dinged.
Margaret Mead Film Festival Nov ?? May 31
Society for Visual Anthropology Nov ?? March Submitted.
Mental Health Film Festival (UBC) May 2008 ??
Göttingen International Film Festival May 2008 Jan 2008
SuperFest: Disability and Culture Film Festival June 2008 Jan 2008


Visual Anthropology's list of film festivals:

Asian Film Festivals:

DVD Jacket.jpgI mocked up the DVD jacket cover for my forthcoming film, Bethel: Community and Schizophrenia in Northern Japan.

Comments and thoughts more than welcome! Also, let me know if you or your organization would like to arrange for a screening. I'm doing several this semester. The film is still officially still in editing, I'm hoping to open it in January at a film festival.

2497187.jpgYesterday, I was interviewed by John Dankowsky for the Where we live show on WNPR (a NPR affiliate in Connecticut) about the Margaret Mead Film Festival as well as my film, Bethel: Community and Schizophrenia in Northern Japan.

Sitting to my right in the photograph is Karl Heider, professor of anthropology at University of South Carolina, also an avid visual anthropologist. He delivered the keynote for the film festival on Saturday, titled: The State of Visual Anthropology. hasn't posted the interview as an MP3 yet, keep tuned and I'll let you know when they do. has now posted the interview as an MP3 format:

I screened a rough cut of Bethel yesterday at festival in the Peabody Museum at Yale. I'm still in editing and hope to open the film at the Montreal Ethnographic Film Festival in January 2007.

I just finished printing out 50 of my disability-protest photographs for a small show that I'm opening at the main Yale library. More on the show later. I used my Epson Stylus Pro 1280 printer. It's an older model -- but still on the Epson books, as it's very popular among photographers for its pigmentdye-based inks.

I usually print on Matte Paper Heavyweight. I've tried a variety of different papers types and styles and have always returned to the matte paper. It reminds me of the old fiber papers when I used to use the darkroom. The blacks are deep and luscious and it especially gives my film-based photography the softer look that I like.

While waiting for my printer to print, I was struck by two sentiments. One is the ease of color photography now that we have digital printers. I had always worked in a darkroom, but never with color because of the steep learning curve and expensive equipment necessary. Photography has also become much more affordable. The cost of printing out 50 photographs came out to around $75 -- the new ink cartridges just barely made it through the batch -- or around $1.50 per 8x10 photograph.

Meta - Info about this blog: May 2013: Monthly Archives

Monthly Archives

Sponsored Links

Powered by Movable Type 5.11

Sponsored by



Sponsored Links

About this Archive

This page is a archive of recent entries in the Meta - Info about this blog category.

Info - Useful information is the previous category.

News - newspaper articles is the next category.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

August 2014

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
          1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30