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Marxism and Film Activism
Screening Alternative Worlds
Edited by Ewa Mazierska and Lars Kristensen
290 pages, 20 illus., bibliog., index
ISBN 978-1-78238-642-1 $135.00/£99.00 Hb Published (July 2015)
ISBN 978-1-78533-762-8 $34.95/£27.95 Pb Published (January 2018)
eISBN 978-1-78238-643-8 eBook
"This is an excellent collection of penetrating scholarly treatments, signifying a Renaissance in the study of how activist cinema has reflected Marxist themes and influences.The whole volume is strongly influenced by contemporary French philosophers, Jacques Rancière and Alain Badiou, by the dialectic between theory and praxis, by the dialectic of activism borne of theory and theory catching up with activism, and by the dialectic of ideological sophistication and broad popular impact." · Dennis Rothermel, California State University, Chico
"An excellent and overdue (i.e., not just timely) contribution. An important source of new ideas and perspectives, filled with ideas and questions to debate" · John Hutnyk, Goldsmiths, University of London
In Theses on Feuerbach, Marx writes, “The philosophers have only interpreted the world differently; the point is to change it.” This collection examines how filmmakers have tried to change the world by engaging in emancipatory politics through their work, and how audiences have received them. It presents a wide spectrum of case studies, covering both film and digital technology, with examples from throughout cinematic history and around the world, including Soviet Russia, Palestine, South America, and France. Discussions range from the classic Marxist cinema of Aleksandr Medvedkin, Chris Marker, and Jean-Luc Godard, to recent media such as 5 Broken Cameras (2010), the phenomena of video-blogging, and bicycle activism films.
Ewa Mazierska is Professor of Film Studies at the University of Central Lancashire. She has authored nearly twenty monographs and edited collections, including Work in Cinema: Labor and Human Condition (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013), European Cinema and Intertextuality: History, Memory, Politics (Palgrave Macmillan, 2011), and Jerzy Skolimowski: The Cinema of a Nonconformist (Berghahn, 2010). She is a principal editor of the journal Studies in Eastern European Cinema.
Lars Kristensen is a Lecturer in Media, Aesthetics, and Narration at University of Skövde. He has published mainly on cross-cultural issues related to Russian cinema and is the editor of Postcommunist Film: Russia, Eastern Europe and World Culture (Routledge, 2012) and co-editor, with Eva Näripea and Ewa Mazierska, of Postcolonial Approaches to Eastern European Cinema: Portraying Neighbours On-Screen (I.B. Tauris, 2014).
Subject: Film Studies
List of Figures
Ewa Mazierska and Lars Kristensen
PART I: PAST ACTIVISM
Chapter 1. Between socialist modernisation and cinematic modernism: the revolutionary politics of aesthetics of Medvedkin’s cinema-train
Chapter 2. Politics and Aesthetics within Godard’s Cinema
Chapter 3. Marker, Activism and Melancholy: Reflections on the Radical ‘60s in the later films of Chris Marker.
Chapter 4. Marx Immemorial: workers and peasants in the cinema of Jean-Marie Straub and Danièle Huillet
Manuel Ramos Martinez
Chapter 5. In the Heat of the Factory: The Global Fires of The Hour of the Furnaces
PART II: PRESENT ACTIVISM
Chapter 6. Contemporary political cinema: the impossibility of passivity
Chapter 7. Cultural resistance through film: The case of Palestinian cinema
Chapter 8. The Contemporary Landscape of Video-Activism in Britain
Chapter 9. Marxist Resistance at Bicycle Speed: Screening the Critical Mass Movement
Chapter 10. Tales of a video blogger
Chapter 11. Recovering the Future: Marxism and Film Audiences
Notes on Contributors
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