Helmets and Masks: Scenographies of War Traumas in Documentary Cinema

Lecture by Christa Blümlinger
Thursday, April 21, 2016 - 7:00pm

Blümlinger compares four filmmakers' approaches to war—from WWII (John Huston) to the US invasion of Iraq (Harun Farocki), and from the Vietnam War (Winterfilm) to the Israeli army (Avi Mograbi)—to analyze the epistemological status of images depicting stress symptoms of former soldiers and the frameworks of their corresponding gestures. The question of trauma is displaced both from the personal to the political sphere and from the classical analytical cure to the prostheses of the digital age. Considering this shift, what is cinema and what does it do?

Join the Counter Cinema/Counter Media Project for a second lecture by Blümlinger on Wednesday, May 4 at 4:30pm at the Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality, 5733 S. University Ave. “A Return to ‘Techniques of the Body’: Zoe Beloff’s Reinventions” investigates Beloff’s 2011 multimedia installation The Infernal Dream of Mutt and Jeff in terms of Marcel Mauss’s concept of “techniques of the body.”

Christa Blümlinger is professor in film studies at the University Vincennes-Saint-Denis (Paris 8). She formerly taught at the University Sorbonne Nouvelle and at the Free University Berlin. She has directed numerous curatorial and critical activities in Vienna, Berlin and Paris. Her publications include an edition of writings by Harun Farocki (in French), Serge Daney (in German), and books about the essay film, media art, film aesthetics, and Austrian cinema. Among her most recent publications are Cinéma de seconde main, Esthétique du remploi dans l'art du film et des nouveaux médias (2009/2013), Paysage et mémoire. Photographie, Cinéma, audiovisuels (edited with Sylvie Lindeperg, Michèle Lagny and Sylvie Rollet, 2014); and guest editor of “Attrait de l’archive,” a special issue of Cinémas (2014).

Co-presented by the Department of Cinema and Media Studies and the France Chicago Center.