European Film Theory: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

European Film Theory

1st Edition

Edited by Temenuga Trifonova


350 pages

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pub: 2008-10-28
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European Film Theory explores the ‘Europeanness’ of European film theory, its philosophical origins, the ‘culture wars’ between ‘Continental’ and ‘Analytical’ film theory and philosophy, the major discursive and epistemological shifts in the history of Continental film theory, the relationship between Continental philosophy of art and philosophy of history and European film theory. Writing from a range of disciplines and perspectives, the contributors to this new volume in the AFI FILM READERS series offer fresh interpretations of European film theorists and illuminate the political potential of European film theory.


'The essays in European Film Theory provide a long overdue critical remapping of what has been called 'theory' in contemporary film studies. No philosophical stone goes unturned in this remarkable volume, and many are then sculpted into provocative and original arguments.' - D.N. Rodowick, Harvard University, USA

'A key resource for film theory… A richly detailed volume in every respect, the text is distinguished by its scope, the sweep of its rhetoric, and the numerous films it examines… Highly recommended.' - CHOICE

Table of Contents

Introduction: That Perpetually Obscure Object of Theory

Part One: European Film Theory

1. European Film Theory: From Crypto-Nationalism to Trans-Nationalism, Paul Coates

2. The Aesthetics of Race in European Film Theory, Tobias Nagl

3. The Disunity of Film Theory and the Disunity of Aesthetics, Casey Haskins

4. Real Location, Fantasy Space, Performative Place: Double Occupancy and Mutual Interference in European Cinema, Thomas Elsaesser

Part Two: Film and Philosophy

5. Film as Philosophy: A Mission Impossible?, John Mullarkey

6. Platonic Reconstruction and Residual Kantianism in Film Theory, Colin Burnett

7. Epstein, Bergson, and Vision, Malcolm Turvey

8. Heidegger and Cinema, Brian Price

9. Listening and Touching, Looking and Thinking: The Dialogue in Philosophy and Film between Jean-Luc Nancy and Claire Denis, Douglas Morrey

Part Three: Politics, History, Ideology and Film Theory

10. Fabulation and Contradiction: Jacques Ranciere on Cinema, Tom Conley

11. The Gaze of Biocinema, A. Kiarina Kordela

12. From Cinema to History: Kracauer's Shifting Philosophical Historiography, Scott MacKenzie

13. Disposition: From Film Theory to Human Action, Astrid Oesmann

Part Four: Aesthetics and Film Theory

14. Between the Ornament and the Corpse: Adolf Loos and Classical Film Theory, Rosalind Galt

15. Baroque Dialectics or Dialectical Baroque: Sergei Eisenstein in/on Mexico, Masha Salazkina

16. A Screen for Projection: Ricciotto Canudo's Exponential Aesthetics and the Parisian Avant-Gardes, Ara H. Merjian

17. Synaesthesia in Film Theory, Sabine Doran

Part Five: Realism Revisited

18. Innocence and Ontology: The Truthfulness of Andre Bazin, Lisabeth During

19. From Distraction to Indeterminancy to Distraction: Kracauer and Contemporary Film Realist Discourse, Temenuga Trifonova

20. National Identity and Realism in Postwar Itlaian Film and Film Theory, Ora Gelley

21. Neorealism at a Distance, Karl Schoonover

Appendix: Teaching Aid



About the Editor

Temenuga Trifonova is Assistant Professor of Film Studies at York University, Canada. She is the author of The Image in French Philosophy.

About the Series

AFI Film Readers

AFI Film Readers, published in cooperation with the American Film Institute, focus on important issues and themes in film and media scholarship.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PERFORMING ARTS / Film & Video / History & Criticism
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Media Studies