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Archaic Modernism: Queer Poetics in the Cinema of Pier Paolo Pasolini (Queer Screens) Paperback – Import, 30 November 2020

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Daniel Humphrey introduces us to Oedipus Rex, Medea, and Notes Toward an African Orestes as if Pasolini had made these films in the ancient world, as if cinema were an archaic, forgotten art of which only strange fragments can be found, and an uncanny prequel to the actual Greek tragedies.--Alessandro Carrera"University of Houston" (07/01/2020)

Elucidating what is perhaps the most demanding of cinematic practices, Humphrey employs the critical tools of queer theory with great insight. Pasolini's complex and seldom seen 'mythic trio' provides the occasion for a subtle and ambitious engagement with a range of theoretical perspectives, grounded in the author's keen interest in textual form. An impressive work.-- (07/01/2020)

Few filmmakers challenge us as Pier Palolo Pasolini does. His films contain deep contradictions and Pasolini refuses to resolve them for us. Daniel Humphrey's Archaic Modernism grapples with these contradictions to great effect, offering elegant, lucid, and compelling explanations for why Pasolini matters so persistently in his engagements with cinema, politics, sexuality, and history.-- (07/01/2020)

Finally, Daniel Humphrey has given us the Pasolini we need, showing how his famous 'cinema of poetry' was a queer theory avant la lettre. Focusing on three of Pasolini's most complex and least-discussed films, Humphrey's brilliant readings reveal the most thrilling Pasolini-perverse and irrecuperable by liberal logics of progress or identity. Pasolini's queerness, at the heart of his poetics, lies in the tension between the archaic and the modern, and his films reveal how the force of heterocentric law rests on the disavowal of its own, inevitable, queer undoing.-- (07/01/2020)

In this sophisticated and provocative study, Humphrey rereads Pasolini's undercelebrated 'Trilogy of Myth' to reveal a queer poetics that is central to the filmmaker's work. Lucidly written and beautifully illustrated, Archaic Modernism animates the films with vibrant arguments about psychoanalysis, queer theory, authorship, Orientalism, and Third Cinema.-- (07/01/2020)

In Humphrey's ingenious formulation, the three films that Pasolini adapted from classical Greek sources constitute an unrecognized 'Trilogy of Myth.' When examined in tandem, these adaptations illuminate the relentless collision of the primitive and the modern underlying all Pasolini's films. The result is an aesthetics-and ethics-of 'archaic modernism' that not only destabilizes cinematic verisimilitude but visualizes a radical queerness that is world-shattering. The close analysis of Medea is a tour de force.-- (07/01/2020)

Pier Paolo Pasolini has often presented a stumbling block for critics and audiences alike, given his controversial film theory, his eccentric formal practices, his troubled relationship to the Italian Left, and his unapologetic homosexuality. In this fascinating and ambitious study, Daniel Humphrey is able to show the necessary-indeed, structural-relationship between those things. Humphrey's analyses of three lesser-studied works of Pasolini pay nuanced attention to the transgressive formal systems of the films, in the process making important contributions to current debates about queer futurity, queer spectatorship, postcolonial filmmaking, and the ethnographic impulse in the art cinema of the 1960s.-- (07/01/2020)

About the Author

Daniel Humphrey is associate professor of film studies and women's and gender studies as well as the coordinator of the film studies program at Texas A&M University. He is the author of Queer Bergman: Gender, Sexuality and the European Art Film and articles in Criticism, Screen, GLQ, Post Script, Invisible Culture, and elsewhere.

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Product details

  • Publisher : Wayne State University Press; Illustrated edition (30 November 2020)
  • Language : English
  • Paperback : 180 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 0814343104
  • ISBN-13 : 978-0814343104
  • Item Weight : 254 g
  • Dimensions : 15.24 x 1.27 x 22.23 cm

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