Marion Schmid
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Love and intimacy in a post-lapsarian world
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Chantal Akerman is not a director commonly associated with the depiction of love and romance. In the work of the 1970s, mutual, fulfilled love is largely presented as an absence or an impossible aspiration in the life of protagonists condemned to a life of solitude or errant desire by their nomadism or psychological difficulties. In the lighter output of the 1980s, love and romance emerge as the main driving forces of Akerman's burlesque dramas. Finally, in the narrative work of the 1990s and 2000s, love relationships are once again scrutinised and probed in a variety of combinations, from heterosexual love triangles to adolescent bisexual attraction and transatlantic romance across class and national boundaries. A tension between commercial and experimental forms of film-making informs Akerman's work from an early point in her career. Arguably Akerman's most Jewish film, Demain on déménage is also one of her most explicitly autofictional works.

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