The Documentary Film Reader brings together an expansive range of writing by scholars, critics, historians, and filmmakers to provide a stimulating foundational text for students and others who want to undertake study of nonfiction film. While documentary has long been a mainstay of universities and cinematheques, its popularity of late has grown tenfold as reality television has flourished and as the ranks of novice filmmakers have swelled. There are now dozens of film festivals dedicated exclusively to documentaries. This reader presents an international perspective on the most significant developments and debates from several decades of critical writing about documentary. It integrates historical and theoretical approaches, offering a collection that is particularly well suited to meet the needs of large undergraduate survey courses on nonfiction film, as well as providing sufficient depth for graduate classes.