A Beautiful Nightmare

In a distinctly autobiographical manner, Lee Adcock uses Guy Debord's technique of detournement to understand how the "steroid era" in baseball has interrupted a distinctly American narrative of identity and kinship. Of detournement, Debord (1981) writes, "Any elements, no matter where they are taken from, can serve in making new combinations...when two objects are brought together, no matter how far apart their original contexts may be, a relationship is always formed" (p. 9). Lee's visual memoir juxtaposes media images, audio and text to forge a new relationship that speaks to the powerful role of baseball in the construction of identity through American notions of family and memory.

This project was designed and created under the guidance of Dr. John Lee, North Carolina State University, as part of a graduate class entitled "Digital History and Pedagogy." As such, I would like to thank Dr. Lee and all of my classmates for their many insights and suggestions. In addition, I would like to thank Dr. Cheryl Mason-Bolick and Dr. Jim Trier at the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill for their continued support and direction. I would also like to acknowledge my loving wife, Andrea, and our son Mateo for providing perspective.



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  • Buck, J., & White, B. (1988). A hobbled Gibson homers in a pinch (or, "Clutch Kirk, Part II"): Columbia Broadcasting System.
  • Burns, K. (Writer) (1994). Baseball. USA: PBS.
  • C-SPAN (Producer). (2007, February 2010) Marck McGwire: Senate Testimony on Steroid Use. Podcast retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=942HcHKbOno.
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  • Lindley, John. (1989). Field of Dreams [Movie Poster]. USA: Universal Studios.
  • McGwire, Mark. Donruss, 1988. Baseball. Common, 256.
  • Palmeiro, Rafael. Donruss, 1987. Baseball. Common, 43.
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  • Sosa, Sammy. Leaf, 1990. Baseball. Common, 220.
  • W.G. N. (Producer). (1985) Harry Caray Sings Take Me Out to the Ballgame. Podcast retrieved fromhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fo9fEADU.
  • Wieren, P. V., & Caray, S. (1992). "The Slide": Turner Broadcasting Service.


Equipment Used:

This movie was made using a Canon G6 12mp camera, a home-made black box, Roxio Easy VHS-DVD software, Final Cut Pro 7, and Apple Motion 4.

Created and produced by Lee Adcock (2010)