Recovering Face through Participation: An Ethnography of the Precarious Creation of an Artwork by Teenagers in a Working-Class Neighborhood

Special Report: The Limits of Democratic Inclusion
By Anthony Pecqueux

This paper is an ethnography of a digital and participatory movie created by teenagers in a working-class district. It relates this movie’s production and underscores the constraints encountered during the process. It shows the continued creation of the movie in spite of these constraints, with the project restarting during each session through harnessing an important part of its dynamic on a collective level, namely its valuation. And it analyzes the “happy” consequences that might emerge from the project (even with difficulty), namely its role in enabling some of the teenagers to restore their damaged face.


  • participatory movie
  • popular district
  • teenage years
  • ethnography
  • valuation
  • facework
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