Citation in the French Fiction Film from the New Wave to the Present: Imagining a New Spectator

Citation in the French Fiction Film from the New Wave to the Present: Imagining a New Spectator

Franck Le Gac

Language: English

Pages: 239

ISBN: 2:00145560

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


At the turn of the 1960s, citation – a figure until then relatively rare in the
fiction film – began to appear, if not frequently, at least with an insistent regularity.
In breaching the self-contained world characteristic of most genres in the era of the
classical fiction film,citation called forth spectators who would assume a much more
significant share of hermeneutic work –not simply as the addressees of filmic
narration, but also, alternately or simultaneously, as the witnesses of a certain type of
representation unfolding in the present tense. While such double, or mixed
spectatorial position has frequently been described and defined as a distinct sign of
modernity in world cinema, citation has rarely found itself at the center of critical
inquiries.Nor has it been defined with much precision comparatively with other
intertextual modes.
“Citation in the French Fiction Film from the New Wave to the Present:
Imagining a New Spectator”engages in this work of definition, underlining the
specificities of a film citation with respect toliterary citation, but also more generally
to citation in discourse and language. Conceived as involving enunciation in part or
as a whole, and affecting the expressive materials of cinema, citation thus goes
beyond a mere diegetic appearance or a shared narrative form, by contrast to the
reference or the remake, for instance. This in turn makes it possible, through the
close analysis of a dozen fiction films, to isolate three major objects, the foci of a
general function called “monstration.”Citation points to the reality recorded and
used for fiction; it uncovers the gestures and technologies, but also the textualization
and discursive production at work in the fiction film;finally, it inscribes the present
of spectatorial interpretation in the fiction film.
In examining the development of these critical faculties of citation over a
period of a half-century, “Citation in the French Fiction Film from the New Wave to
the Present: Imagining a New Spectator”opens further lines of questioning: first, the
permanence, through citation or other figures, of dissociation and monstration in the
fiction film, and ultimately a form of narrative fiction film more open to negotiation
with the spectator –a type of work and a way to attend to images and sounds that
mayincreasingly define cinema itself; second, the hypothesis that what citation
involves within the fiction film may extend to the relation a certain understanding of
citizenshiphas had with nationality in France historically, from the conception of
signs to the model of community they implied. This early intuition explains the
national scope of this corpus, and its ulterior developments constitute an
investigation into the role played by cinema in the construction of French citizenship
in the second half of the twentieth century.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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