Art cinema’s immaterial labors
Johns Hopkins University Press
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Rhodes, J. (2018). Art cinema’s immaterial labors. Diacritics, 46 (4), 96-116. https://doi.org/10.1353/dia.2019.0005
Cinema, as a popular entertainment, has frequently been understood as a leisure activity, something undertaken in one’s free time, the hours during which one has been freed from the demands of work. Cinema’s plenitude—its abundance of image, sound, narrative, incident, and spectacle—differentiates itself, so the story could be told, from the physical and cognitive demands of the working day. Of course, critical theory taught us long ago that such a conceptualization of cinema was false: cinema, like other “amusements,” was a continuation of the working day by other means, “the prolongation of work,” an “after-image of the work process itself.”1 This illuminating insight, whatever its critical purchase of what is really at stake in cinema spectatorship, enjoys a counterfactual relation to what it is most people imagine themselves to be doing when they elect to go to the cinema and sit in the dark for ninety or more minutes. However false their consciousness may be, going to the movies is undertaken ostensibly as a dropping of tools.
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.1353/dia.2019.0005
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/296970
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