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The Continental Philosophy of Film Reader

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements Introduction Section I: Foundations Chapter 1 Ricciotto Canudo The Birth of the Sixth Art (1911) Chapter 2 Georg Lukacs Thoughts on an Aesthetics of Cinema (1913) Chapter 3 Hugo Munsterberg The Means and Function of the Photoplay (1916) Chapter 4 Rudolf Arnheim Sound Film (1928-1932) Chapter 5 Andre Bazin The Ontology of the Photographic Image (1945) Chapter 6 Jean Epstein Mechanical Philosophy (1946) Chapter 7 Bela Balazs Theory of the Film (1948) Chapter 8 Roland Barthes The Romans in Films (1957) Garbo's Face (1957) Lost Continent (1957) Section II: Phenomenology and Existentialism Chapter 9 Jean-Paul Sartre Motion Picture Art (1931) Chapter 10 Andre Malraux Sketch for a Psychology of the Moving Pictures (1940) Chapter 11 Roman Ingarden The Film (1961) Chapter 12 Maurice Merleau-Ponty The Film and the New Psychology (1964) Chapter 13 Jean Louis Schefer The Ordinary Man of the Cinema (1980) Chapter 14 Serge Daney The Tracking Shot in Kapo (1992) Chapter 15 Daniel Frampton Filmosophy (2006) Section III: Marxism and Critical Theory Chapter 16 Siegfried Kracauer Cult of Distraction: On Berlin's Picture Palaces (1926) Chapter 17 Sergei Eisenstein A Dialectic Approach to Film Form (1931) Chapter 18 Walter Benjamin The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction (1939) Chapter 19 Max Horkheimer and Theodor W. Adorno The Culture Industry: Enlightenment as Mass Deception (1944) Chapter 20 Theodor W. Adorno Transparencies on Film (1966) Chapter 21 Jacques Ranciere A Thwarted Fable (2001) Section IV: Psychology and Psychoanalysis Chapter 22 Jean Mitry The Psychology of Montage (1963) Chapter 23 Jean-Louis Baudry Ideological Effects of the Basic Cinematographic Apparatus (1970) Chapter 24 Felix Guattari A Cinema of Desire (1973) The Poor Man's Couch (1975) Chapter 25 Julia Kristeva Fantasy and Cinema (1997) Chapter 26 Slavoj Zizek The Strange Case of the Missing Lacanians (2001) Section V: Feminism and Gender Studies Chapter 27 Simone de Beauvoir Brigitte Bardot and the Lolita Syndrome (1959) Chapter 28 Laura Mulvey Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema (1975) Chapter 29 Teresa de Lauretis Through the Looking-Glass: Women, Cinema, and Language (1984) Chapter 30 Judith Butler Gender is Burning (1993) Chapter 31 Judith Halberstam The Transgender Look (2005) Chapter 32 Tina Chanter Concluding Reflections on the Necrophilia of Fetishism (2008) Chapter 33 Drucilla Cornell Shooting Eastwood (2009) Section VI: Postmodernism Chapter 34 Edgar Morin The Semi-imaginary Reality of Man (1956) Chapter 35 Monique Wittig Lacunary Films (1966) Chapter 36 Jean-Francois Lyotard Acinema (1973) Chapter 37 Michel Foucault Film and Popular Memory (1974) Chapter 38 Jean Baudrillard History: A Retro Scenario (1981) Chapter 39 Paul Virilio The Imposture of Immediacy (1984) Sicut Prior est Tempore ita quo Potio Iure (1984) Chapter 40 Gilles Deleuze The Time-Image (1985) Chapter 41 Giorgio Agamben Notes on Gesture (1992) Chapter 42 Jean-Luc Nancy On Evidence: Life and Nothing More, by Abbas Kiarostami (1995) Chapter 43 Alain Badiou The False Movements of Cinema (1998) Chapter 44 Jacques Derrida Cinema and Its Ghosts (2000) Chapter 45 Bernard Stiegler Cinematic Time (2001) Epilogue Giorgio Agamben The Six Most Beautiful Minutes in the History of Cinema (2005) Index

Promotional Information

This book is an anthology of primary source writings by significant philosophers in the Continental tradition on film, from the beginning of the 20th-century to the present.

About the Author

Joseph Westfall is Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Houston-Downtown, USA. He is the author of The Kierkegaardian Author (2007), co-editor of the forthcoming Foucault and Nietzsche (Bloomsbury 2017) and has written numerous articles and book chapters on topics in Continental philosophy, aesthetics, and the philosophies of literature and film.


The intellectually minded film world has been waiting for this anthology. Westfall's book does not only provide a comprehensive collection of texts essential in European philosophy of film or film aesthetics; it also succeeds in drawing a distinguishing line between continental and analytic philosophy of film, a line that used to be blurred. The book plausibly establishes the existence of continental philosophy of film as a distinct tradition. -- Thorsten Botz-Bornstein, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Gulf University, Kuwait This is a long overdue collection of readings which have shaped the trajectory of continental philosophy and film, from Eisenstein and Munsterberg to Frampton and Halberstam. Invaluable for teaching and as a research guide, this is the first volume to bring all these names together in this context, demonstrating the breadth of the field and the extraordinary contributions made by these thinkers to debates about film. -- Lucy Bolton, Senior Lecturer in Film Studies, Queen Mary, University of London, UK This is the most complete compilation of European film-philosophers I have ever seen, and the selection features some of the most influential writings in the history of the discipline. I would love to have such a resource. -- Daniel Shaw, Professor of Philosophy, Lock Haven University, USA A superb selection of texts, as diverse as it is ambitious. If you are looking for the best thinking about cinema available in a single volume, it may be the one you're holding in your hands. -- Costica Bradatan, Professor of Humanities, Texas Tech University, USA Continental philosophy of film has long and fascinating history, one that has often been obscured or misunderstood. Its contribution to contemporary film theory is thus only now starting to be appreciated. Joseph Westfall's magisterial volume, the Continental Philosophy of Film Reader, marks a major milestone in our understanding of this rich tradition of philosophical reflection on cinema. His volume covers the entire history of the medium, from early theorists such as Canudo, Epstein, and Lukacs, lesser known texts by Malraux, Barthes, and Schefer, to contemporary thinkers such as Butler, Stiegler, and Agamben. With an authoritative Introduction, helpful summary texts for each author, and a host of new translations, this timely and impressive Reader provides an edifying and enlightening guide to the 'Continental' contribution to film theory. -- Robert Sinnerbrink, Senior Lecturer in Philosophy, Macquarie University, Australia Finally an anthology of continental philosophers on film! The Continental Philosophy on Film Reader has made a wealth of primary sources easily accessible for cross-reading, discerning trajectories, and tracing responses. Ending with postmodernism, this welcome historical anthology allows access to diverse formats from Simone de Beauvoir's defense of Brigit Bardot against criticism by other women in what today would be a blog to the chatty interviewee Michel Foucault rejecting films about known figures even if these are Continental philosophers. -- Silke Panse, Reader in Film, Art and Philosophy, University for the Creative Arts Canterbury, UK

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