01/ That scary dinosaur movie

I loved Jurassic World so surely I would like Godzilla (Gorija, 1954).

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My first class this semester introduced me to autoethnographic, a method (from my belief) that is used to describe the way we interpret and critique from our own personal experiences and framework to analyse from our viewpoints. It uses reflexivity to make us think and self-reflect on our work.

Oh boy was this lesson all about multi-tasking. We were screened the original Godzilla film, in which we also had to live tweet our thoughts whilst trying to keep up with this black & white movie with subtitles. This was a whole new experience for me which I found was a fun and unique way to share and have a look at everyone’s own references and thoughts through their own perspective.

Having not so much of a religious upbringing, and shamefully not being that knowledgeable with my history, I didn’t really know what to expect in this Japanese movie.

The film (with the overdramatised acting & dodgy effects) did remind me of olden movies I used to watch with my grandparents and did flash me back in time. I personally loved the vibes it sent off- like a feeling you get when you watch childhood movies or cartoons.

Although most the time I got distracted and missed half the plot, with research and through other student’s tweets, I did collectively find how powerful and symbolic Gorija is.
The title ‘Gorija’ is a metaphor for Hiroshima, which can symbolise the bombings in 1945. It was released after WWII and during early stages of the Cold War. This hugely impacted Japan as the movie is also an outcry to show and depict how powerful nuclear weapons are and the repercussions these had to the Japanese culture and society. A more in-depth and better understanding of the symbolic film can be read here.

Looking back on my lesson, it really shows the power autoethnographic has, through the different content people were sharing and posting. Students tweets throughout the movie were 90% memes and gifs (all me sorry) whilst the other 10% was posting about the history and meanings behind the film and their own inputs. It showed how peoples own knowledge and beliefs shape their perspective and experience with Gorija as there were plenty of different facts and ideas being shared.

How important do you think autoethnographic research is?

Until next time…
-Emily G.

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