This essay distinguishes some significant commonalities and differences between the film-philosophies of Chilean filmmaker Raúl Ruiz (especially in his book Poetics of Cinema) and U.S. philosopher Stanley Cavell. I argue that despite shared senses of the poetics of the film image and certain shared philosophical references, Ruiz and Cavell differed over their conceptions of the model spectator and their relations to autonomous films and worlds from which spectators are excluded (on Cavell's picture) versus fragments out of which the spectator might (...) create their own films and worlds in which a spectator might become included (on Ruiz's picture). I then argue that a striking reconciliation between these perspectives takes place via each's conception of television, since it was precisely the features of the medium and its heteronomous parts that Cavell found bemusing about from the perspective of his view of film (and its supposedly autonomous works) that allowed for Ruiz's natural career-long relationship with television and heteronomy, especially in Latin American telenovelas. I thus approach Ruiz's relation to telenovelas via Cavell's understanding of the possibilities of soap operas to explore arguments between different temporalities: "dialectical," narrative time and "undialectical" recurrences of needs and drives. I further explore this possibility with a reading of Ruiz's neglected, late-career Chilean TV series Litoral (2008), focused on the construction of stories by sailors aboard a ghost ship. I argue that the series' treatment of these different temporalities reaches its culmination in the poignant image of a sailor-storyteller stuck within a story of his own creation: a stark rendering of his taking a sideways-on view of the role of his own fantasies in its construction. (shrink)
In this article, I defend the cognitive value of certain generic television series. Unlike media and television scholars, who have been appreciative of the informative capacity of television fiction, philosophers have been less willing to acknowledge the way in which these works contribute to our understanding of our social reality. My aim here is to provide one such account, grounded in aesthetic cognitivism, that is, the view that fiction is a source of knowledge. Focusing on crime and courtroom dramas, I (...) start by offering some examples of the cognitive benefits available in some of these series and I argue that the more beneficial cases establish superior mimetic relations with reality, enhancing their capacity to present ethically challenging issues. I then examine whether the fictional dimension of these works presents an obstacle to their informative potential and I conclude that it does not. A central aspect of my account is the claim that the degree of cognitive benefit depends on the underlying narrative strategy of the series. Specifically, there are clues in any given show, including the treatment of ongoing characters, which signal the extent to which it can be taken as mimetically reliable and thus, cognitively valuable. I complete my account by addressing anti-cognitivists’ arguments which call to doubt the informative aspect of television series and their capacity to address ethical concerns. (shrink)
Conan, el niño del futuro (1978) es un dibujo animado oriental que plasma a una sociedad futurista que ha sobrevivido a la Tercera Guerra Mundial. El personaje principal, un niño de 10 años, aparece en la historia para impedir que el grupo hegemónico continúe con su pretensión de dominar el mundo, sin importar la tiranía que ejercen contra los ciudadanos. Para lograr ese vil propósito, las autoridades de Isla Industria han incurrido en escenarios en los que se observa la esclavitud, (...) la dificultad para expresarse con libertad y el sometimiento obligatorio a las decisiones del sistema. Esas actitudes no solo revelan un contexto recreado en un mundo ficcional, sino que es latente al apreciar las revueltas sociales de la actualidad. A ese tipo de manifestación por los derechos, se le agrega otra modalidad correlativa: la censura. Esta se concreta de forma implícita y sutil, con el objetivo de que las víctimas desacrediten sus derechos y no reclamen ante los abusos frecuentes de un gobierno que los sanciona, los encarcela o los exilia con injusticia. Su condición de peligro para la hegemonía es esencial, porque puede acarrear una toma de conciencia para los demás pobladores y una posible rebelión. Para finalizar, esta investigación se valdrá de las teorías poscoloniales e interculturales para evidenciar cómo un proyecto político se instaura en un anime japonés y, en especial, en el protagonista que desea reorientar a toda una sociedad, junto con ese sistema represivo inherente. (shrink)
La producción alemana Heimat (1984) del director Edgar Reitz consta de 11 largometrajes que abordan, principalmente, la Primera Guerra Mundial y la Segunda Guerra Mundial; además de las repercusiones psicológicas, sociales y económicas que generan en los pobladores estos eventos históricos. Este conjunto de filmes se enfoca en un espacio rural denominado Schabbach. En ese lugar, se aprecia el desarrollo y la evolución de una genealogía que se supedita a la relación de María y Paul Simon, pero desde una perspectiva (...) disociada. Prevalecerán situaciones individualistas como alejarse del núcleo familiar para ser partidario de la guerra, migrar a otras localidades, buscar superarse, evitar a los congéneres o vivir en el recuerdo. En ese sentido, esta investigación se basará en esas motivaciones de los personajes y se recurrirá al análisis interdisciplinario, epistemología propia de los Estudios Culturales, para confrontar y explicar esa realidad social frente a la guerra. (shrink)
An analysis of some work by the Oaxaca-based Mexican experimental filmmaker and video artist Bruno Varela via the latter’s reading of the late U.S. philosopher Stanley Cavell, especially Cavell’s 1982 essay “The Fact of Television.” This essay focuses on the aesthetic possibilities of the very constitution of the electronic image, based in Cavell’s understanding of television’s dependence on notions of “switching,” as opposed to “succession,” as well as how those notions play a role in Varela’s understanding of what it is (...) to critique communications media while retaining their communal potential. Audiovisual work by Varela discussed in this essay include Línea 3 (2010-11) and Materia oscura (Dark Matter, 2016). (shrink)
This article lies at the intersection of two problems: the one concerning the potential of fictional works to inform us about our social reality and foster our understanding of its various aspects, and the one concerning their potential to engage with philosophical issues. I bring these two together by analyzing the hit television series Law and Order: Special Victims Unit. According to my interpretation, the series is informative about our social world, and it raises philosophical concerns about it. This makes (...) it well-equipped to fulfill the educative function attributed to mass art by Noël Carroll, and to stand out as an example of what he calls popular philosophy. To support this interpretation, I rely on contemporary views regarding the nature of our engagements with fictional narratives. I then explore how philosophical concerns are generated and I elaborate on the role they have in deepening one’s understanding of one’s social circumstances. I further show how the series provides innovative and independent philosophical knowledge by means specific to the medium of generic serialized fiction. The central part of my argument is an analysis of the narrative strategies which enable the informative and philosophical aspects of the series to generate the series’ educative function. (shrink)
Since the advent of media archeology, a deep-seated bifurcation has found one end of the field arguing for the interventionist and appropriative weaponization of media whereas the other side has championed a “total war” with technology itself, insisting that new media’s military-industrial roots inherently color its drivability. Here, I implore a moment within the cultural history of net.art and post-internet art to examine how contemporaneous queries about control after militarism and decentralization, as prognosticated by Paul Virilio and Gilles Deleuze, are (...) part of a more deeply entrenched discourse on neural nets, predictive processing algorithms and machine learning, which the current media theory and post-cinema literature has yet to rigorously respond to. Simultaneously parsing philosophical and media sociology corollaries to ground this overview, I push for more attention towards psychopower, autosurveillance and algorithmic governmentality while distancing critique from the standard Foucauldian discourse of biopower. (shrink)
Through analysis of film sequences focusing on DNA in two British Broadcasting Corporation nonfiction science television programs, Wonders of Life and Bang! Goes the Theory, first broadcast in 2013, contrasting “religious” and “secular” representations of science are identified. In the “religious” portrayal, immutable scientific knowledge is revealed to humanity by nature with minimal human intervention. Science provides a creation story, “explanatory omnicompetence,” and makes life existentially meaningful. In the “secular” portrayal, scientific knowledge is changeable; is produced through technical skill in (...) expert communities; and is ambiguous, potentially positive and negative for society. Television representations of science affect audience understandings, and this is particularly the case for nonfiction representations of science, as they are likely to be “taken more seriously” than fictional representations. The consequences of the “religious” representation of science are discussed, and it is argued that a widespread understanding of science as presented in the religious portrayal would negatively impact democracy. (shrink)
The consciousness of the hosts is a major theme in Westworld, and for good reason. Hosts are not philosophical zombies. The hosts act like they have feelings, like they suffer and fear, like they enjoy the yellow, pink, and blue tones of a beautiful sunset. This chapter examines the analogs of memory, perception, and emotion in hosts. Hosts have a very troubling relationship to memory. Although using a different visual style would denote unique host experience, using the same visual style (...) to depict both human and host experience is not a strong indicator that the hosts are conscious, or that they have similar experiences to humans. Host perception, memory, and emotions all seem different from human, but the cinematic medium does not grant us immediate access to host experience, and neither the testimony of the creators, nor the hosts is totally reliable. (shrink)
Статтю присвячено аналізові евфонічних, орфографічних, лексико-семантичних помилок, яких припускаються журналісти інтернет-ЗМІ. Систематизовані анормативи, зібрані із сучасних крос-медійних матеріалів, визначено чинники, які спричинили їх виникнення, наведено приклади типових помилок із сайтів інформаційних агенцій, інтернет-версій періодичних видань і телеканалів, сайтів державних установ.
Wie wird man der, der man ist? Die Frage ist zweideutig. Zum einen scheint sie danach zu fragen, wie man durch all das, was einem geschieht und was man tut, schließlich zu jener bestimmten Person wird, die man zu einem gewissen Zeitpunkt ist. Zugleich zielt die Frage darauf, wie man das einholt, was man »ist«, es nicht nur ist, sondern wirklich wird. Die Frage wirft also einerseits das Problem der Verkettung von Taten, Umständen und Wirkungen auf, die das Produkt einer (...) bestimmten Veränderung hervorbringen, wie andererseits das Problem jener Prozesse der Aneignung und Anerkennung, durch die ein Selbstverhältnis zu dieser Veränderung möglich wird. Die Serie Breaking Bad geht diesem doppelten Prozess auf eine besondere Weise nach, indem sie eine negative Bildungsgeschichte, die Geschichte einer Gegen-Bildung erzählt. Sie zeigt, dass die Devise, zu werden, was man ist, nicht auf Selbstausschöpfung zielt - die Entfaltung und Ausschöpfung der eigenen Potentiale -, sondern vielmehr auf Selbstwerdung: die Verwandlung unseres Seins in Werden und Wissen, Selbstaneignung und Selbstüberschreitung. (shrink)
Is it possible to recover lost moral ground? In the closing episodes of the TV show "Breaking Bad", it becomes clear that the protagonist, Walter White, believes that the correct answer to this question is an affirmative one. Walt believes that he can, and that he has, recovered lost moral ground. "Breaking Bad" may be said to explore two distinct and incompatible ways of attempting to recover lost moral ground. The first way is revisionist. This is to rewrite the script (...) of what, morally speaking, has occurred, so that it appears that nothing wrong was done. The second way is restorative. This is to admit to morally wrongful behavior, but to attempt to make amends for it. While we concede that it is possible to recover lost moral ground in both of these ways, we deny that Walt is able to do so in both of these ways. At best, Walt can only hope to recover lost moral ground by attempting to make amends for his past misdeeds. (shrink)
As a core element of film language, camera movement plays a crucial role in narrative explanation, character shaping, and theme development in cinema. Although camera movements in animation movies are often implemented to add excitement to shots, their best use is when new narrative is revealed. In this paper we have studied the aspects of narration that can be presented by camera movement in animation. We put our question on whether camera movement can have a role in narration or not; (...) how narration theories can explain camera movement; what are the special and different abilities of camera movement in animation. We have analyzed case studies along with narration theories. The goal is to extract and categorize these usages of camera movement in by studying animation movies in a way that the result would be applicable and useful for animation directors. In order to reach this goal, first it is defined what is meant by the word narration in this paper and different theories of narration are used to reach our definition of narration. Afterward it is conveyed what is exactly meant here by camera movement and on the basis of the given definitions, the necessity of studying the relation between narration and camera movement is discussed. We use theories such as of MiekeBal and Bordwell. After defining Syuzhet, fabula and style, we argue about the membership of camera movement in those three parts of narration. Then the main part is discussed, which is explaining and discussing different applications of camera movement in animation considering many different aspects such as inducing feelings, defining genre of the animation and enriching the master shots. Applications of camera movement have been studied based on different aspects such as conscious absent mindedness camera; forming film genres such as comedy, surreal, documentary; making suspension and exaggeration in animation; application of still camera; and challenges between new technologies and art. During the main part of the discussion we study animations in a categorized approach to make the patterns being derived, we focus on useful applicable patterns. -/- . (shrink)
What is so striking about Breaking Bad is how centrally impairment and disability feature in the lives of the characters of this series. It is unusual for a television series to cast characters with visible or invisible impairments. On the rare occasions that television shows do have characters with impairments, these characters serve no purpose other than to contribute to their ‘Otherness.’ Breaking Bad not only centralizes impairment, but impairment drives and sustains the story lines. I use three interrelated themes (...) from Disability Scholarship to analyze Breaking Bad. The first theme, Bodily Control, is that good bodies are controlled bodies and that uncontrolled, messy bodies are frightening, bad bodies. Indeed, the messiness of impairment and disability is so bad, that impaired and disabled individuals are excluded or shut out or excluded from many areas of public life. The second theme, Normalcy, is that the effect of hiding away impairment, of attempting to conceal disability, is that society becomes defined by, and structured around, the concept of normalcy. Normalcy, being normal, attaining and maintaining normalcy, is the preoccupation of most in society. To fail to be normal, or to fall from what is considered to be normal, is a source of tremendous anxiety for most people. These two themes, Bodily Control and Normalcy are conceptually connected: impairment, disease and dying are so feared because they are socially invisible and, therefore unknown and unknowable. They are the undiscussable taboos. The third theme, Bodily Realism, is that having a realistic view of the body, which would at minimum require accepting the fact that human bodies are fragile things, prone to disease and accident and are ultimately destined to die, makes one more at ease in the world, and able to live better lives and live as a better person. Indeed, so the argument goes, our lives would be richer, more rewarding—emotionally and morally—if we cared less about normalcy because of a dread of abnormalcy, but instead learned to accept if not positively value the physical variability of human existence. (shrink)
Competitive quiz shows, and Jeopardy! in particular, occupy a unique place among TV game shows. The most successful Jeopardy! contestants—Ken Jennings, Brad Rutter, Frank Sparenberg, and so on—have appeared on late night talk shows, been given book contracts, and been interviewed by major newspapers. This sort of treatment is substantially different than, say, the treatment that the winners of The Price is Right or Deal or No Deal are afforded. The distinctive status of quiz shows is evidenced in other ways (...) as well; for instance, consider the widespread public outrage that accompanied the discovery of fixed quiz shows in the 1950s of the fact that, when IBM wanted to find a task to test the latest developments of artificial intelligence, they chose the game of Jeopardy. In this essay, I’ll take a look at Jeopardy! as an exemplar of a certain sort of game, and will suggest that part of what gives Jeopardy! its distinctive status is that it is a qualitatively good game—that is, it is a game that that fulfills just those functions a game is supposed to fulfill. I’ll begin by showing how Jeopardy! meets Bernard Suits’ (1967, 1988, 2005) definition of games, according to which games are characterized as activities that have certain sorts of rules and in which participants are required to have the right attitude toward these rules. Among other things, I’ll talk about the role played by some of Jeopardy’s distinctive rules (“remember to phrase your answer in the form of a question”) and about the possible differences a monetary reward makes to game players’ attitudes. I’ll then go on to talk about what distinguishes Jeopardy! from other, superficially similar sorts of games. I’ll concentrate on three factors in particular: (1) the fact that the skills required by Jeopardy! have value outside of the game, (2) the fact that observers in Jeopardy! can “play along” with the contestants on TV, and (3) the fact that success in the game is determined, to a very great extent, by the skills of the participant and not by other facts (such as luck). To close, I’ll talk more generally about the distinction between good games and not-so-good games, and will discuss why it is that good games are worth taking seriously. In this section, I’ll discuss some recent work on the value of games and sports, and will make some suggestions about how these accounts might be tailored to account for the specific virtues of a game like Jeopardy. (shrink)
Presents a collection of essays by philosophers about the television program "How I Met Your Mother," analyzing the personalities and behavior of its various characters from a moral and philosophical point of view.
This essay suggests that television aesthetics, as a research project, would benefit from attending to relevant theoretical debates in philosophical aesthetics. One reason for this is that assumptions about the ontology of television artworks are already embedded in our critical practices. We ought to be more aware of what these assumptions are and state them more explicitly. Moreover, I argue, for debates in television aesthetics to get off the ground, we need to ensure we bring the largely the same ontological (...) assumptions to the table. We need to roughly agree about how television works are identified and individuated to ensure we are talking about the same works and that our debates are coherent. Referring to television works as 'texts' can make their ontology seem radically different from what our common creative and critical practices suggest, but I argue that a more precise use of language will help clarify ontological matters. Furthermore, I argue that the tacit ontological conceptions embedded in our creative and critical practices cannot be overturned by revisionist theories; rather, they actually determine the sort of ontological things to which we refer with terms like ‘episode’ and ‘series’. I conclude by attempting to show that our standard critical practices involve the tacit assumption that successfully realized artistic intentions establish the spatio-temporal boundaries of television works. (shrink)
Nihilism, American style -- The quest for evil -- The negative zone : suburban familial malaise in American beauty, Revolutionary road, and Mad men -- Normal nihilism as comic : Seinfeld, Trainspotting, and Pulp fiction -- Romanticism and nihilism -- Defense against the dark arts : from Se7en to the Dark knight and Harry Potter -- God got involved : sacred quests and overcoming nihilism -- Feels like the movies.
Boys, Boyz, Bois concerns questions of ethics, gender and race in popular American images, national discourse and cultural production by and about black men. The book proposes an ethics of masculinity, as ethnics refers to a system of morality and valuation and as ethics refers to a care of the self and ethical subject formation. The texts of analysis include recent films by black/African American filmmakers, gansta rap and hip-hop and black star persona: texts ranging from Blaxploitation and New Black (...) Cinema to contemporary music video to autobiography and the public image of Sidney Poitier. The book is a significant contribution to cultural studies and gender studies and critical race theory. What is distinctive about the book is the question of ethics as a question of race and gender. (shrink)
Global changes in capital, power, technology and the media have caused massive shifts in how we define home and community, leaving redrawn territories and globalized contexts. This interdisciplinary study of the media brings together essays by accomplished critics to discuss the way film, television, music, and computer and electronic media are shaping identities and cultures in an increasingly globalized world. Ranging from intensely personal to highly theoretical, the contributors explore our complex negotiation of "home" and homeland" in a postmodern world. (...) Contributors: Homi Bhabha, Thomas Elsaesser, Rosa Linda Fregoso, Teshome H. Gabriel, George Lipsitz, Margaret Morse, David Morley, John Peters, Patricia Seed, Ella Shohat, and Vivian Sobchack. (shrink)