The politics of cinema
in Marguerite Duras
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Working within the 1970s French avant-garde, Marguerite Duras set out to dismantle the mechanisms of mainstream cinema, progressively undermining conventional representation and narrative and replacing them with her own innovative technique. However, the experimental impetus of her cinema was not motivated solely by artistic or aesthetic considerations, but also had important political implications. While all films by Duras can be described as 'political' or 'oppositional', in the sense that they subvert dominant modes of representation, Nathalie Granger, Le Camion and Les Mains négatives differ from the rest of her work. This is because they combine this formal challenge with overtly political themes relating to feminism, communism and postcolonialism. The making of Nathalie Granger in 1972 coincided with the period of intense political activity and lively theoretical debates which marked the early years of the post-1968 French feminist movement.

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