By Neil Postman
In a chain of feisty and eventually hopeful essays, one in all America's sharpest social critics casts a clever eye over modern tradition to bare the worst -- and the simplest -- of our conduct of discourse, trends in schooling, and obsessions with technological novelty. Readers will locate themselves rethinking a lot of their bedrock assumptions: may still schooling transmit tradition or protect us opposed to it? Is technological innovation development or a above all American habit? while all people watches a similar tv courses -- and tv manufacturers don't discriminate among the audiences for Sesame highway and Dynasty -- is formative years whatever greater than a sentimental notion? Writing within the traditions of Orwell and H.L. Mencken, Neil Postman sends surprise waves of wit and significant intelligence during the cultural wilderness.
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Additional resources for Conscientious Objections: Stirring Up Trouble About Language, Technology and Education
First, while art cinema traverses the political spectrum, our definition of how aesthetics and geopolitics work together in its construction allows for new and more nuanced analyses to be made. The commonplace dismissal of art film as wholly conservative is thus inadequate, and we seek to overthrow it. If we settle for the reductive version of art cinema as an always already compromised or disappointing practice, then we risk missing significant arrangements of aesthetics and geopolitics that underlie—and perhaps can be diagnosed exclusively through—even the most reactionary of art films.
While it is true that the zoom was used widely by other genres, including mainstream popular cinema, kung-fu movies, and the avantgarde, it served as a widely recognizable marker of the art cinema’s identity. Sembene and Visconti use the zoom frequently to draw spectatorial awareness to image, and thus to figure the image’s rich conceptual productivity. In the work of these directors, the zoom might indulge the excesses of the mise-en-scène, allow the most agile apprehension of movement, reorganize the spatialization of history in the image, and/or denaturalize the knowledge provided in looking.
And the ephemeral placeness of site-specific art practices (Gordon Matta-Clark) not only trouble global capitalism’s armchair cosmopolite but ask us to consider what it means to travel to see a film. By careful attention to the experiential nature of post-cinematic artworks by Douglas Gordon and Matthew Barney, Price brings film theory to the white cube exhibition space to reveal the sociogeographic fault lines of contemporary connoisseurship. Jihoon Kim also looks at the intersections between art cinema and time-based gallery installations, focusing on a particularly prominent figure in contemporary Thai cinema, Apichatpong Weerasethakul.