Tag Archives: General Intellect

General Intellect: Call for Papers

General Intellect, CAMIRA’s multilingual journal is under way.

If you are a CAMIRA member, please submit your proposal to info@localhost:8888/camira. Identify yourself and the theme (see below) of your paper.

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Dossier I: what is film criticism in the electronic-digital age?

The question involves extremely complex and related themes that go beyond the environment within which film criticism can be practiced. We first must go back and return to the question of medium, to the difference between orality and writing, print and electronic, etc. (1). Secondly, we must ask ourselves what are the distinct features of the electronic-digital age (2). Next we must interrogate, not so much the essence, but at least the characteristics of criticism in general and film criticism specifically (3). Finally, after having understood what a medium is – since our criticism is always inscribed in a medium – we will have to forge a logical and well founded connection with the characteristics of our age as well as with the specificities of film criticism, all while understanding that this must always pair clear thought and an artistic sensibility (4). Only in this way can we imagine working on the problem in an adequate way, or even arriving at its solution.

Dossier II: cinema and theatre today

The relationship between cinema and theatre is well known and well catalogued throughout the history of film critic and theory. The legacy of theatre at the beginning of cinema, the controversy over “filmed theatre” in the early sound film or even the modern approach by directors like Jacques Rivette, Carmelo Bene, Werner Schroeter or Manoel de Oliveira, all these issues have been debated in a fruitful way. But what happens when, right in the middle of a fast, highly technological and ever-changing age, some contemporary directors decide to approach the old art of theatre again?

Today, there seems to be a new generation of filmmakers (or, in some cases, a renewed approach by veterans) that are explicitly proposing a dialogue with theatre, recovering classic texts, approaching theatrical procedures of mise-en-scène, proposing dissonant acting styles. The recent oeuvre of directors like Júlio Bressane, Paul Vecchiali, Rita Azevedo Gomes, Pierre Léon or Matías Piñeiro shows us that theatre-related films are not old-fashioned nor decadent, but one of the most vivid and stimulating traits of contemporary cinema.

Conversely, moving images penetrate theatre. An increasing number of theatre directors, like Thomas Ostermeier, Ivo van Hove, Krystian Lupa or Milo Rau, among others, incorporate (recorded or live) moving images in their theatre performances. The inclusion of moving images and cinema/video technology in theatre not only expands the spectator’s perception, multiplying the temporal, spatial and narrative layers, but it might also deconstruct theater’s specificities such as the live performance and the scenic spatial unity. Contributing to break the fourth-wall illusion, moving images in theatre might convoke the Brechtian notion of “Umfunktionierung”/refunctionalisation (and its revision by Walter Benjamin), as the structural reorganization of the relationship between the stage, the author, and the audience, bringing out a less vertical structure of communication.

The first edition of General Intellect proposes a dossier to discuss this topic and encourages writers to deal with some of these intriguing questions: which aesthetical problems are at stake, today, when cinema approaches theatre? And what happens when theatre approaches cinema? What forms and expressions can arise from this encounter? Which filmmakers/theatre directors are proposing the most enthusiastic gestures in this field? In which terms can the performative potential of moving images in theatre be defined? When cinema goes to the theatre or theatre goes to the cinema today, what are they searching for?

We will receive proposals for articles, interviews, essays and other forms of contribution for the dossier until April 15th. The deadline for full texts will be around June. If you have any questions about the form of contribution or about the dossier, please contact Victor Guimarães (zictorzictor@gmail.com) or Raquel Schefer (raquelschefer@gmail.com).