D.N. Rodowick offers a critical analysis of the development of film theory since 1968. He shows how debates concerning the literary principles of modernism—semiotics, structuralism, psychoanalysis, Marxism, and feminism—have transformed our understanding of cinematic meaning. Rodowick explores the literary paradigms established in France during the late 1960s and traces their influence on the work of diverse filmmaker/theorists including Jean-Luc Godard, Peter Gidal, Laura Mulvey, and Peter Wollen. By exploring the "new French feminisms" of Irigaray and Kristeva, he investigates the relation of political modernism to psychoanalysis and theories of sexual difference. In a new introduction written especially for this edition, Rodowick considers the continuing legacy of this theoretical tradition in relation to the emergence of cultural studies approaches to film.
The Crisis of Political Modernism Criticism and Ideology in Contemporary Film Criticism
About the Book
Reviews"Gives a superb critical and polemical overview of the '70s film theory. Rodowick is particularly good at showing both the political stakes of these influential theories and their blind spots."—Constance Penley, University of California, Santa Barbara
Table of Contents
Preface to the Second Edition
ONE The Discourse of Political Modernism
TWO Modernism and Semiology
THREE Ideology and Criticism
FOUR Formalism and "Deconstruction"
FIVE Anti-Narrative, or the Ascetic Ideal
SIX Language, Narrative, Subject (1): The Critique
of "Ontological" Modernism
SEVEN Language, Narrative, Subject (2): Narration
EIGHT Sexual Difference
NINE The Crisis of Political Modernism