Here's a clip of Steve Brodner and Gail Levin talking about documentary and ways of seeing.
At one point Gail mentioned "animated documentary" which is hot catch phrase in film and academia.
It's also a spectacular oxymoron. By nature, animation is a process. That process is fundamentally and essentially contrived. Documentary is a recorded revelation of actuality. When the process of animation is applied to the genre of documentary, the result is still animation but the form is no longer documentary.
Yes, animation can "reveal" just as documentary does -but the method of revelation is different. Animation reveals through artifice- like Picasso showing the truth of war in "Guernica".
Ultimately, documentary captures and displays a moment that actually happened. This is true of Ken Burns, Agnes Varda, Errol Morris, or Michael Moore. The process of animation takes the experience outside of the moment, rebranding the instance as whole new experience from the event under discussion.
Animation has always been an important part of documentary -especially educational films. Taking animation as the primary narrative element of "documentary" removes the "documenting" entirely and replaces it with "opinion" and "fiction". The stories become personal narratives, which is fine. Personal narratives are by their very nature untrustworthy, documentary needs the willing approval of its viewers to be successful.
Waltz with Bashir, for example, is a "talking head" documentary where the talking heads are animated and the re-enactments are also animated. The very act of animation removes it from "documenting" the story of the massacre and the lead character's quest for memory and places the film in a world of historic fiction. Despite its first person accounts its less a documentary experience than Battle of Algiers- a purely fictional story which has the resonance of a breaking news report.
Animation, for the most part, does not offer tools for "documenting". Animation expresses choice and opinion. This is what makes the technique interesting in non-fiction film.