Review essay: Phenomenology goes to the movies

Stadler, Jane (2011) Review essay: Phenomenology goes to the movies. Projections (New York): The journal for movies and mind, 5 1: 87-101. doi:10.3167/proj.2011.050107

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Author Stadler, Jane
Title Review essay: Phenomenology goes to the movies
Formatted title
Review essay: Phenomenology goes to the movies. Malin Wahlberg, Documentary Time: Film and Phenomenology. Jennifer Barker, The Tactile Eye: Touch and the Cinematic Experience. Julian Hanich, Cinematic Emotion in Horror Films and Thrillers: The Aesthetic Paradox of Pleasurable Fear
Journal name Projections (New York): The journal for movies and mind   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1934-9688
1934-9696
Publication date 2011
Sub-type Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
DOI 10.3167/proj.2011.050107
Volume 5
Issue 1
Start page 87
End page 101
Total pages 15
Editor Ira Konigsberg
Place of publication New York, NY, U.S.A.
Publisher Berghahn Books
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Building primarily on the work of Maurice Merleau-Ponty, a number of film theorists have developed varied and sophisticated ways of utilizing the philosophical method of phenomenology to discuss embodiment, film technology, aesthetic techniques, realism, spectatorship, and contexts of film reception over the past two decades. Soon after a special issue of Quarterly Review of Film and Video was dedicated to phenomenology in 1990, Alan Casebier published Film and Phenomenology (1991). This monograph was swiftly followed by Vivian Sobchack’s groundbreaking study Address of the Eye (1992), a book that came to define the field and influence a stream of journal articles by film scholars and philosophers such as Laura Rascaroli (1997) and Havi Carel (2007).

By the turn of the millennium, phenomenology was emerging as an alternative to neo-formalist, cognitivist, ideological, and psychoanalytic interpretations of film narrative, spectatorship, and screen aesthetics. In 2000, Laura U. Marks employed phenomenology to account for the sensory impact of experimental, intercultural screen media in The Skin of the Film, then in Touch (2002) and her pioneering work on hapticity informed Sobchack’s second powerful contribution to phenomenology, Carnal Thoughts: Embodiment and Moving Image Culture (2004). This body of work provides the foundation from which new scholars in the field are developing contemporary phenomenological approaches to the moving image including Malin Wahlberg’s phenomenological theorization of temporality in documentary, Documentary Time (2008); Jennifer Barker’s sensuous approach to the cinematic experience, Tactile Eye (2009); and Julian Hanich’s impressive account of genre, aesthetics, and audience affect in Cinematic Emotion in Horror Films and Thrillers (2010).
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Publication date: Summer 2011. Subtitle: "Malin Wahlberg, Documentary Time: Film and Phenomenology (Minneapolis and London: University of Minnesota Press, 2008), xvii + 170 pp., $22.50 (paperback). Jennifer Barker, The Tactile Eye: Touch and the Cinematic Experience (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2009), xii + 196 pp., $24.95 (paperback). Julian Hanich, Cinematic Emotion in Horror Films and Thrillers: The Aesthetic Paradox of Pleasurable Fear (New York and London: Routledge, 2010), xi + 301 pp., $118 (cloth)."

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
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Created: Wed, 02 Mar 2011, 09:35:13 EST by Dr Jane Stadler on behalf of School of Communication and Arts