This book examines a corpus of films and TV series released since the global financial crisis, addressing them as emblematic expressions of our age of precarity. The analysis of the motifs and characters of these case studies is built around notions originating from Mikhail Bakhtin’s literary theory and, in particular, the concept of chronotope, affirming the material and dynamic connection between form and content in artistic experience. This book observes how precarious lives are enacted in forms of spatio-temporal compositions which carry conceptual and ethical challenges for their viewers. This book falls within the film-philosophy framework and, although primarily directed to an academic audience, it provides an interdisciplinary account of the notion of cinematic precarity. It puts the embodied analysis of viewers’ ethical participation in close dialogical relationship with a philosophical and sociological examination of current dynamics of inequality and exclusion.
Introduction.- A Film-Philosophy for the Age of Precarity.- The Economy of Precarity.- Anxious, Depressed, Disposable/Extinct Lives on Screen.- Is There Something Our Bodies Can Do?.- Chapter Outlines and Limitations.- Part 1: Anxiety.- 1.1 Visualising the (Embodied) Soul at Work.- 1.2 From Welfare to Workfare Through Cinema.- 1.3 Cinematic Performances of Femininity.- 1.4 I Can Be the Best of ‘Me’.- 1.5 Becoming Algorithm.- Part 2: Depression.- 2.1 Film Chronotopes of the Precarious Northwest.- 2.2 Italian Peripheral Cinema.- 2.3 Gig Workers and Emotional Labour.- 2.4 Social Reproduction in Cinematic Care-Work.- 2.5 China is Purest Capitalism.- Part 3: Expulsion/Extinction.- 3.1 The Economy of Massacre at the Movies.- 3.2 Precarious Cinematic Citizenship.- 3.3 Differential Inclusion in TV series.- 3.4 Expulsed Childhoods.- 3.5 Visual Memories of a Dead World.- Conclusion: Cinematic Futures.
Francesco Sticchi works as Lecturer at Oxford Brookes University, UK, and at the SAE Institute. He is the author of Melancholy Emotion in Contemporary Cinema: A Spinozian Analysis of Film Experience (2019).
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