Rethinking the Familiar in Steven Soderbergh‘s The Limey
This article complicates the notion that Steven Soderbergh‘s films are simply a
refashioning of familiar materials, as evidenced by his ongoing appropriation of
classical Hollywood and the European art cinema. Through a close analysis of The
Limey (1999), this essay argues that Soderbergh‘s film interrogates the idea of
familiarity, as such, beginning with the perceptual experience that it generates for
viewers. With reference to Victor Shklovsky‘s notion of defamiliarization as well as
Martin Heidegger‘s formulation of temporality in Being and Time, this discussion
proposes that Soderbergh‘s reiteration of the filmic past can be seen as a meaningful
event for film-critical practice that sheds new light upon issues of filmic
temporality and film history.
Like many exiles and outsiders, Reisz was able to balance an
emotional investment in his adoptive country with the ability to remain
critically distanced enough to recognize and then de-familiarize the
cultural tropes that make it tick. It’s hardly surprising then that,
speaking specifically of Morgan’s political insecurities, Reisz
admitted that ‘The character seemed very relevant to me, since I had
had a left-wing youth
woman, is Doctor Who gay? Or NB (non-binary)? (fan tweet cited in Leighton-Dore, 2018 )
New Doctor, new series, new companions … new
challenges. It shouldn’t, perhaps, be too challenging. After all, science fiction is
supposed to be about the new, the strange, the alien; defamiliarization or estrangement are
key strategies for the genre. For various reasons, of course, science fiction, especially in
mainstream media such as TV, tends not to live up to its potential of creating new worlds
serious art to set up a
defamiliarizing commentary on Morgan’s creative impotence, which is rooted in
self-pitying solipsism. Although Morgan complains about being kicked out of
Leonie’s attic – ‘I did all me best work up there’
– his ex-wife quickly reminds him that he hasn’t finished a
painting in eighteen months, a fact that Napier reaffirms when Morgan visits
the gallery. The problem is that the love-sick Morgan is so
Wassily Kandinsky and Walter Benjamin on language and
perception around 1920, specifically in a
few of the textual fragments that the editors of his Gesammelte Schriften have gathered
under the rubric ‘On the Philosophy of Language and Epistemo-Critique’.18 Passages in
Benjamin’s writings seem to try out procedures Kandinsky proposes for defamiliarizing
words, perceiving them as if they were incomprehensible; we can see how Benjamin may
have responded to, and transformed, Kandinsky’s proposals.
In an outline for a philosophical exploration of language (which at that time he planned
to write as his ‘second dissertation’, as
The gothic and death is the first ever published study to investigate how the multifarious strands of the Gothic and the concepts of death, dying, mourning, and memorialization – what the Editor broadly refers to as "the Death Question" – have intersected and been configured cross-culturally to diverse ends from the mid-eighteenth century to the present day. Drawing on recent scholarship in Gothic Studies, film theory, Women’s and Gender Studies, and Thanatology Studies, to which fields it seeks to make a valuable contribution, this interdisciplinary collection of fifteen essays by international scholars considers the Gothic’s engagement, by way of its unique necropolitics and necropoetics, with death’s challenges to all systems of meaning, and its relationship to the culturally contingent concepts of memento mori, subjectivity, spectrality, and corporeal transcendence. Attentive to our defamiliarization with death since the advent of enlightened modernity and the death-related anxieties engendered by that transition, The gothic and death combines detailed attention to socio-historical and cultural contexts with rigorous close readings of artistic, literary, televisual, and cinematic works. This surprisingly underexplored area of enquiry is considered by way of such popular and uncanny figures as corpses, ghosts, zombies, and vampires, and across various cultural and literary forms as Graveyard Poetry, Romantic poetry, Victorian literature, nineteenth-century Italian and Russian literature, Anglo-American film and television, contemporary Young Adult fiction, Bollywood film noir, and new media technologies that complicate our ideas of mourning, haunting, and the "afterlife" of the self.
In a pair of interviews during the 1970s, Karel Reisz himself acknowledged this clear line of continuity in his work, he always thought of himself as a cinematic auteur, but stressed that it was a continuity of neither British nor Czech sensibilities. Like many exiles and outsiders, Reisz was able to balance an emotional investment in his adoptive country with the ability to remain critically distanced enough to recognize and then de-familiarize the cultural tropes that make it tick. Given his lifelong affinity for outsiders and exiles, it is clear that Reisz's personal background is crucial to any understanding of his cinema, not only because of his own exile from Nazism and subsequent displacement into a foreign culture. Because of his graduation into film-making from the academic world of film criticism, a realm largely alien to many of the veterans of the British film industry. The book discusses the 'kitchen sink' realism of the Angry Young Men, the birth of the British New Wave, and the Gorilla war. Morgan is an important film in the Reisz canon, not only because it reinforced his continued move away from the last vestiges of social realism associated with the first British New Wave, but also because it was his first truly self-reflexive film. The book also discusses Momma Don't Allow, We Are the Lambeth, Saturday Night and Sunday Morning, Night Must Fall, The Gambler, Dog Soldiers/, Who'll Stop the Rain, The French Lieutenant's Woman, and Everybody.
This book analyses the use of the past and the production of heritage through architectural design in the developmental context of Iran. It is the first of its kind to utilize a multidisciplinary approach in probing the complex relationship between architecture, development, and heritage. It uses established theoretical concepts including notions of globalism, nostalgia, tradition, and authenticity to show that development is a major cause of historical transformations in places such as Iran and its effects must be seen in relation to global political and historical exchanges as well as local specificities. Iran is a pertinent example as it has endured radical cultural and political shifts in the past five decades. Scholars of heritage and architecture will find the cross-disciplinary aspects of the book useful. The premise of the book is that transposed into other contexts, development, as a globalizing project originating in the West, instigates renewed forms of historical consciousness and imaginations of the past. This is particularly evident in architecture where, through design processes, the past produces forms of architectural heritage. But such historic consciousness cannot be reduced to political ideology, while politics is always in the background. The book shows this through chapters focusing on theoretical context, international exchanges made in architectural congresses in the 1970s, housing as the vehicle for everyday heritage, and symbolic public architecture intended to reflect monumental time. The book is written in accessible language to benefit academic researchers and graduate students in the fields of heritage, architecture, and Iranian and Middle Eastern studies.
This book presents new research on the histories and legacies of the German
Expressionist group, Der Blaue Reiter, the founding force behind modernist
abstraction. For the first time Der Blaue Reiter is subjected to a variety of
novel inter-disciplinary perspectives, ranging from a philosophical enquiry into
its language and visual perception, to analyses of its gender dynamics, its
reception at different historical junctures throughout the twentieth century,
and its legacies for post-colonial aesthetic practices. The volume offers a new
perspective on familiar aspects of Expressionism and abstraction, taking
seriously the inheritance of modernism for the twenty-first century in ways that
will help to recalibrate the field of Expressionist studies for future
scholarship. Der Blaue Reiter still matters, the contributors argue, because the
legacies of abstraction are still being debated by artists, writers,
philosophers and cultural theorists today.
Printing Terror places horror comics of the mid-twentieth century in dialogue with the anxieties of their age. It rejects the narrative of horror comics as inherently and necessarily subversive and explores, instead, the ways in which these texts manifest white male fears over America’s changing sociological landscape. It examines two eras: the pre-CCA period of the 1940s and 1950s, and the post-CCA era to 1975. The authors examine each of these periods through the lenses of war, gender, and race, demonstrating that horror comics are centred upon white male victimhood and the monstrosity of the gendered and/or racialised other. It is of interest to scholars of horror, comics studies, and American history. It is suitably accessible to be used in undergraduate classes.