Jonathan Burt – A pensive nature, a mechanical/And slightly detestable operandum: The Elision of Animals and Cinema

 

 

Event Date 18 June 2012
Flett Lecture Theatre
Natural History Museum
Cromwell Road (Exhibition Rd Entrance)
London SW7 5BD

The London Graduate School and the Centre for Arts and Humanities Research at the Natural History Museum London present:

Unruly Creatures 2 : Creative Revolutions

This is the second in a series of one-day conferences that analyse and discuss the various ways in which animals have been used in the humanities and contemporary arts, the political and theoretical implications of this use, and the manner in which animals have resisted this appropriation such that they might enter into political discourse. With examples taken from philosophy, history, and the arts, it will also examine whether there is an animal political identity, and even new ways of thinking about struggle, revolt, and revolution that might be called ‘animal’.

Jonathan Burt (Series Editor, Animal – Reaktion Books) –
‘A pensive nature, a mechanical/And slightly detestable operandum’: the elision of animals and cinema’

Respondent: John Mullarkey (Kingston University)
This talk takes as its starting point two slightly different perspectives on animals and cinema. One perspective outlines the presence of animals in cinema as a form of cross-species contact with particular transformational consequences for all beings involved, and the second encompasses the elision of the animal with photography and cinema in a number of recent writings. The main approach to explore these ideas will be via a consideration of Raymond Bellour’s immensely important theses on the animal film image in his Le Corps du Cinéma: hypnoses, émotions, animalités (2009), some poems of Wallace Stevens from which the title quote is taken, and examples from a number of filmmakers including Bill Viola and Jean Painlevé.

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Respondent: John Mullarkey (Kingston University)

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