The Routledge Companion to Philosophy and Film: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The Routledge Companion to Philosophy and Film

1st Edition

Edited by Paisley Livingston, Carl Plantinga


692 pages

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The Routledge Companion to Philosophy and Film is the first comprehensive volume to explore the main themes, topics, thinkers and issues in philosophy and film. The Companion features sixty specially commissioned chapters from international scholars and is divided into four clear parts:

  • issues and concepts
  • authors and trends
  • genres
  • film as philosophy.

Part one is a comprehensive section examining key concepts, including chapters on acting, censorship, character, depiction, ethics, genre, interpretation, narrative, reception and spectatorship and style. Part two covers authors and scholars of film and significant theories Part three examines genres such as documentary, experimental cinema, horror, comedy and tragedy. Part four includes chapters on key directors such as Tarkovsky, Bergman and Terrence Malick and on particular films, including Memento.

Each chapter includes a section of annotated further reading and is cross-referenced to related entries.

The Routledge Companion to Philosophy and Film is essential reading for anyone interested in philosophy of film, aesthetics and film and cinema studies.


'A fascinating, rich volume offering dazzling insights and incisive commentary on every page, the book not only covers a wide range of concerns and concepts but is also organized and presented in a clear, straightforward manner. Every serious student of film will want this book, which could also serve as a text in advanced film-theory classes. Summing Up: Highly recommended.' - CHOICE

The Routledge Companion to Philosophy and Film features incisive, illuminating, well-documented essays authored by a wide range of established major players and a new generation of philosophers of film. This book will be a godsend for teachers of the subject at all levels as well as an indispensable reference volume for anyone interested in exploring the invitation to philosophical reflection that the medium of film inexorably extends to us.’ - Nancy Bauer, Tufts University, USA

‘This volume distinguishes itself from its competitors by the richness of insight that results from its willingness to acknowledge and explore the sheer variety of ways in which cinema calls for, and can even put in question, the standing interests and concerns of philosophers’.- Stephen Mulhall, New College Oxford, UK

Table of Contents

Part 1: Issues and Concepts 1. Acting Johannes Riis 2. Authorship Aaron Meskin 3. Censorship Susan Dwyer 4. Consciousness Murray Smith 5. Definition of 'Cinema' Trevor Ponech 6. Depiction Robert Hopkins 7. Digital Cinema Berys Gaut 8. Emotion and Affect Carl Plantinga 9. Empathy and Character Engagement Amy Coplan 10. Ethics Folke Tersman 11. Film as Art Robert Stecker 12. Formalism Katherine Thomson-Jones 13. Gender Angela Curran and Carol Donelan 14. Genre Brian Laetz and Dominic McIver Lopes 15. Interpretation George Wilson 16. Medium Kevin Sweeney 17. Music Jeff Smith 18. Narration Noël Carroll 19. Narrative Closure Noël Carroll 20. Ontology David Davies 21. Race Dan Flory 22. Realism Andrew Kania 23. Spectatorship Carl Plantinga 24. Sound Giorgio Biancorosso 25. Style Noël Carroll 26. Violence Stephen Prince Part 2: Authors and Trends 27. Rudolph Arnheim Jinhee Choi 28. Walter Benjamin Stéphane Symons 29. David Bordwell Patrick Colm Hogan 30. Bertolt Brecht Angela Curran 31. Noël Carroll Jonathan Frome 32. Stanley Cavell William Rothman 33. Cognitive Theory David Bordwell 34. Gilles Deleuze Ronald Bogue 35. Sergei Eisenstein David Bordwell 36. Christian Metz Francesco Casetti 37. Jean Mitry Brian Lewis 38. Edgar Morin Dudley Andrew 39. Hugo Munsterberg Don Fredericksen 40. Phenomenology Vivian Sobchack 41. Psychoanalysis Richard Allen 42. Semiotics and Semiology Joseph Kickasola 43. Ludwig Wittgenstein Malcolm Turvey Part 3: Genres and Other Types 44. Dogme 95 Mette Hjort 45. Documentary Carl Plantinga 46. Horror Aaron Smuts 47. Pornography Susan Dwyer 48. Avant-garde Film Maureen Turim 49. Tragedy and Comedy Deborah Knight Part 4: Film as Philosophy 50. Film as Philosophy Thomas E. Wartenberg 51. Ingmar Bergman Paisley Livingston 52. Terrence Malick David Davies 53. Andrei Tarkovsky András Bálint Kovács 54. Why Be Moral? Christopher Falzon 55. Skepticism Richard Fumerton 56. Personal Identity Deborah Knight 57. Practical Wisdom and the Good Ground of Gettysburg Joseph Kupfer 58. The Five Obstructions Mette Hjort 59. Gattaca Neven Sesardic 60. Memento Andrew Kania. Index

About the Series

Routledge Philosophy Companions

Routledge Philosophy Companions offer thorough, high quality surveys and assessments of the major topics and periods in philosophy. Covering key problems, themes and thinkers, all entries are specially commissioned for each volume and written by leading scholars in the field. Clear, accessible and carefully edited and organised, Routledge Philosophy Companions are indispensable for anyone coming to a major topic or period in philosophy, as well as for the more advanced reader.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PHILOSOPHY / History & Surveys / General