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Intellect Quarterly no.

4 / thinking in colour / summer 2006

IQ

ISSN 1478-7350
04

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IQ
contents summer 2006
Publisher/Editor

06 New Media
Masoud Yazdani
Associate Editor
May Yao
Sub Editor

The Digital Dichotomy Samantha King


Art Director
Gabriel Solomons

Intellect Ltd.

10 Cultural Studies PO Box 862


Bristol BS99 1DE
Tel: 0117 9589910
Fax: 0117 9589911
Regeneration: A Reinvention? www.intellectbooks.com

IQ
intellect quarterly

12 Film & Television


ISSN 1478-7350

©2006 Intellect Ltd. No


part of this publication

Women at the Helm in ‘God’s own Country’ may be reproduced,


copied, transmitted in
any form or by any means
without permission of the
publisher. Intellect accept

18 Media Studies no responsibility for views


expressed by contributors
to IQ; or for unsolicted
manuscripts, photographs or
What Harm and Offence do our Media Cause? illustrations; or for errors in
articles or advertisements.

Cover Image:

22 Art & Design


The lightbulb has long been
used to symbolise ideas and
illumination. The Invention
of the Light Bulb is credited

Technoetic Creativity: A Kabbalistic Perspective t0 Humphry Davy, Joseph


Wilson Swan and Thomas
Alva Edison.

Q&A with » 04 Manuel Alvarado | 08 Susan Hayward | 14 Martin Tompkins


20 Amorey Gethin | 25 Graziella Tonfoni | 28 Book Reviews | 30 Micro Fiction

Intellect publishes books and journals by authors and editors with original thinking they strongly believe in. Our intention is to produce books and journals that have
presence, create impact and are affordable for readers. We commission regardless of whether there is an established readership for the ideas: we support our authors
comprehensively in articulating their thoughts and then bring them to as wide a readership as possible. We choose authors and editors who in backing their ideas,
are willing to be part of our publishing process by investing their energy and resources as needed in co-operation with us. www.intellectbooks.com

Intellect Quarterly | 3
Q&A
iQuote » “The only thing that will kill movies is education.” – Will Rogers

University decided to close down How do you compare and contrast


their operation. Intellect’s publishing programme with
Do you think your academic background other publishers?
is a help or a hindrance in helping I think Intellect’s programme
authors to articulate their thoughts well? is extremely interesting and
Do you have an intellectual agenda of stimulating. I wish I felt that
your own? about some of the other publish-
I think my intellectual develop- ing houses working in this field.
ment helps me enormously to Nevertheless, I understand the
advise authors. In fact my origi- pressures and reasons for adopt-
nal degree is in English Litera- ing certain strategies, which I
ture because Film, TV or Media will briefly enumerate as follows.
Studies did not exist within the All publishers obviously have
formal curriculum at any educa- to make money but the academic
tional level in those days. There- end of the business is getting
fore I was one of the tiny group ever tougher even though higher
of people to create and define education has expanded at a

Manuel Alvarado this broad subject area under the


auspices of the British Film Insti-
tute’s Education Department and
remarkable speed. Publishing
is getting tougher partly because
of competition from the web and
the Society for Education in Film other electronic media but also
Thinks academic publishing about media and Television back at the begin- because the increasing expense
is getting tougher despite the proliferation ning of the 1970s. As a result
my whole subsequent career has
of higher education means that
students have less disposable
of media studies courses. been spent defining, revising, income for books. They want
extending, teaching, examining, comprehensive course text
researching and publishing work books rather than dozens of
in what is now a very large field. individual titles. Whilst I don’t
For the first two decades my own agree with this attitude, the
work was extensively published, larger publishing houses are
What attracted you to the publishing editor of the student newspaper but for the last decade I have increasingly focused on produc-
world in general? at my university and not that concentrated more on supervis- ing such volumes which can be
I’ve been involved in publish- long after leaving university I ing PhD students and advising ‘stacked high’ in the bookshops!
ing ever since I was editor of my became editor of a quarterly researchers and authors whose This is clearly not good news
school’s magazine as a sixteen international academic journal books I was going to publish as for intellectuals, academics or
year old. My co-editor and I focusing on cinema, media and editorial director of a specialist researchers who want to publish
had unsupervised control of education. Eventually I went on university press. their original work as mono-
all aspects of commissioning to found a media publishing im- In response to the second graphs and books. It is also not
articles, photographs and draw- print for John Libbey Publishing question, all intellectuals must, good news for the Research
ings, designing the ‘look’ of the - an imprint that later became a by definition, have their own Assessment Exercise particu-
publication, selling advertising university press. agenda but obviously it would be larly because textbooks do not
space and marketing the maga- What attracted you specifically to join improper of me as a publisher to count in RAE submissions. It
zine. I enjoyed every minute of Intellect? let that interfere with the advice can therefore be clearly seen why
the experience and was certainly Oddly enough, Intellect was I give to students or to authors. Intellect’s project is so important
more fun than most lessons! founded at the same time that I At the same time, it would be and invaluable. Along with a
Little was I to know then that created John Libbey Media. Even irresponsible of me if I didn’t couple of other small presses,
the experience would be highly more strangely the two imprints bring to the attention of students Intellect is literally helping to
educational and so useful to me covered very similar areas so it and authors, material which they break new ground and push back
later in life. was entirely logical for me to might have overlooked or not the frontiers of our knowledge
I subsequently went on to be join the Intellect team when the encountered. and understanding in this field.

4 | Intellect Quarterly
Manuel Alvarado ���������

“The secret to film is that it’s an illusion.” – George Lucas


���������
�����������
����������������������������������������
‘I’ve been involved in publishing ever ��������������������������������������
���������������������������������
since I was editor of my school’s ������������������������������������
magazine as a sixteen year old... Little ��������������������������������
was I to know then that the experience
���������������������������������������
would be highly educational and so ��������������������������������������
useful to me later in life.’ ������������������������������������
����������������������������������������
What is the best book you have read I suppose it would have to be ���������������������������
recently? Time of the Gypsies. There is so
I don’t know about ‘the best’ be- much to say about his work but ������������������������������������
cause I have read so many good there are two observations I will ���������������������������������������
books recently, but I particu- make here. The first is that he
larly enjoyed Francis Wheen’s often (but not always) focuses �������������������������������������
How Mumbo-Jumbo Conquered the on a people who have suffered �����������������������������������������
World (Harper Perennial 2004), – and continue to suffer – the ����������������������������������������
in which he describes how so most awful bigotry across the ������������������������������������
many aspects of recent political world, and he does so in a way
and cultural activities around that is wonderful and totally �����������������������������������
the world have broken with En- life affirming. The second is ���������������������������������������
lightenment values and ideas. that he has created a cinematic ������������������������������������������
What is your favourite movie of all time style and language, unique to
and why? him, to express these values,
�������������������������������������
This is a question I have been which can be best compared to �����������������������������
asked many times over the the Magic Realism of the great
years and it gets ever harder to writers of Latin America. There ������������������������������������
answer. It would be extremely is the added bonus that he also �������������������������������������������
difficult if one was allowed to plays bass guitar in a wonderful �����������������������������������������
name one’s favourite movies Gipsy/Techno/Rock band called
in each of the major genres, or ‘The No Smoking Orchestra’. { ���������������������������������������
one from each country, or one �����������������������������������������
from each of the great auteurs
FURTHER READING
����������������������������������
or even a favourite movie from
Hollywood Utopia: ���������������������������������������
each decade – but a favourite of
‘all time’!
Ecology in Contemporary �����������������
American Cinema
I have therefore decided to
By Pat Brereton | £19.95, $39.95
choose a film by a director I ��������������������������
particularly admire, who is
currently producing a body of
�������������������������
highly original and wonder-
ful films. The director is Emir
Kusturica (who is a Bosnian
Serb from Sarajevo currently liv-
ing in Brittany, France). I would
place at least four of his films as
the best made in the last fifteen �����������������������������
years and if I had to choose one ������������������������������������������
New Media
iQuote » “The new media are not bridges between man and nature; they are nature.” – Marshall McLuhan

The Digital Dichotomy:


Is digital art an enhancement of democracy or only techno-skill? By Beth Porter

T
he Lascaux caves or Hopi but also of its natural home of the almost completely mathematical Below Madonna of the Brooklyn Bridge
sand paintings inspire awe, display: the World Wide Web. VRML [Virtual Reality Markup By Beth Porter
not at the individual artist Although the web features the Language] and self-replicating
but at the unity of components. complete spectrum of creativity, fractal shapes, to the production
There is no reason to assume that I am concentrating here on the of moving images using the digital
such creations were the work of graphical arts to explore the digital equivalent of the flip-book called
specialists or produced by any dichotomy, i.e. works produced animated gifs [gif being one of the
particular gender. Scrutiny of pre- and/or processed on a computer many digital image formats] as well
historic abstract patterning unveils and universally available online. as more sophisticated combinations
an innate sensibility to shape and Artists who embrace the of graphics and programming
juxtaposition, apart from any pure digital challenge continue a long including JavaScript and Flash™.
aspects of representation. Yet we tradition, incorporating every new Digital artists can decide exactly
seem to value Renaissance art over technological development during how many of these tools to master,
Folk art, revealing our cultural our collective cultural history. and do not require a degree in
prejudice. Arguably, it is a prime characteristic computer science.
This is neither to belittle our of our species, and inevitably the So is it art? And can anyone do it?
attempts to better understand art, age-old questions arise: Is it art? When sceptics questioned Turner,
nor to suggest that we cannot apply And, if so, is it any good? Kandinsky, Miro or Bridget Riley,
analytical criteria developed over Without rehearsing the intricacies their defenders referenced each
the centuries. However, we have of the computing process, it’s artist’s traditional training partly
become increasingly alienated from important to understand that the as justification for their individual
Below Geo 03 by Keith Brown
our own artistic impulses. Western very nature of digitisation allows any stylistic developments. True, some Bottom Pay Attention by Beth Porter
society especially encourages us art form to provide the raw material digital artists have backgrounds
to devolve to specialists aspects for a transformation into binary in more conventional methods,
of employment, politics, leisure, code. Colour, shape, sound and but a fair proportion don’t. Does
science and the arts; we’re labelled movement can all be re-fashioned that make their art quintessentially
consumers, customers, viewers as a complex series of 1s and 0s, inferior? Conversely, if you master
rather than participants in, creators and recombined to produce digital the complete range of production
and producers of culture. And images which not only can move to techniques embedded in a digital
when it comes to analysis, we are a soundtrack and emulate the three- paint program, does that make you
encouraged only to provide the dimensional world, but can do so an artist? Self-defined digital artist
uninformed and stereotypical in response to third party requests Paul Conklin from Suffolk confesses
viewpoint [talk shows, phone- from a mouse, touch-screen, or that it was only as he became
ins, private conversation], always voice command. Similar techniques proficient with digital art programs
subservient in influence to specialist generate the surreal landscapes and that he could raise his work above
critics. In that sense, I believe there creatures of such films as King Kong, what he calls ‘dead pixels’.
has been a steady erosion of the Toy Story and The Chronicles of Narnia. Digital sculptor Keith Brown
democratic structure of society. Various programming languages — Director of Art & Computing
Until, that is, the emergence not have been developed to achieve Technologies at Manchester’s
only of the digital phenomenon, impressive graphical results from Institute for Research & Innovation

6 | Intellect Quarterly
Beth Porter
iQuote » “All media are extensions of some human faculty – psychic or physical.” – Marshall McLuhan

in Art & Design (MIRIAD) and ‘Most offline art is to be viewed, not mastering powerful painting or
founder and president of Fast-UK animation programs, they can
(Fine Art Science & Technology touched; the web offers an interactive also customise small pre-written
in the UK) — defines his 3D
works as ‘Real Virtuality’ or
experience to a wider public than applications to incorporate
effects into their finished image.
‘Cyberealism’ rather than ‘Virtual ‘meat-world’ work ever could.’ For example, there’s a morphing
Reality’, reversing the order programme that pre-calculates
between the cyber and the real. installations and happenings painting and, to a lesser degree, the gradual replacement of one
His work, including Geo 03, is notwithstanding). Most offline of sculpture. Of course, you can image with another, or an applet
available to view at The Museum art is to be viewed, not touched; choose to do a headstand in front which allows the deformation of
of Digital Art (www.modazone. the web offers an interactive of the Bridge at Arles but Van Gogh an image by plotting a selection
com/), one of the scores of online experience to a wider public than wanted you to see it right-side of x and y coordinates on key
digital art venues. ‘meat-world’ work ever could. up and head-on. Michelangelo’s spots of a static image. The
My own digital paintings and Mere online displays beg the David, on the other hand, can artist does not need to do the
digital collages are available at question of the live ambience, be approached from any angle; mathematics, but can merely
www.womenstuff.org/bpdigipix. viewing first-hand the painting or both its message and power grab one of those key spots
html in a display which requires sculpture, but SoundToys proves cohere fully when viewed from with the mouse and drag it to
a browser enabled for both Flash the impossibility to experience all sides. Further choices include another location on the screen.
and Java. its exhibits in any way other than materials, colour, composition, So Whistler’s Mother can grow
Perhaps more innovative is virtually. One screenshot of a framing and, particularly in the Pinocchio’s nose. Is that valid
online gallery SoundToys (www. moving, interactive piece cannot case of sculpture, what to leave conceptual art? Is it a graphical
soundtoys.net), presenting convey a fraction of its impact. out. This is as true of Emin’s representation of the implication
artworks combining sound and A defining component of art Unmade Bed as Moore’s Reclining that mothers are liars? Or just a
movement, some relying on involves degrees of selection and Nude, of Banksey’s graffiti as da digital joke?
interactivity turning viewer into choice. For centuries the equation Vinci’s Last Supper. But digital art Such debate defines the digital
participant, a part of the work. between concept and production can rotate, twist and flip, pushing era, consigning questions of
This is one of the joys of digital was not only linear but clearly boundaries of perception. technique more and more to
over conventional art (interactive apparent to the viewer of a Digital drawbacks also com- previous centuries. We are no
plicate questions of perception longer as concerned with the
and control, particularly regard- skills of brushwork or carving,
ing colour. The resolution and though we are still evaluating
power of a monitor, the speed of content and meaning. We do not
a graphics card will affect what assume that conventional artistic
is displayed, so no two people representation will become
experience the artwork precisely extinct, rather that digital activity
as it was created. Conversely, will continue to expand the
some digi-artists provide painting possibilities of expression and
applets with the work so that cultural democracy. {
colours can be altered by the
public; Washington DCs National Beth Porter, author of The Net
Gallery of Art (www.nga.gov/ Effect, is a media analyst and
kids/zone/collagemachine2.htm) practitioner. Her digital piece Some of
aims its online innovative collage the Parts, combining Haiku, sound
machine at children. and music with the artwork of painter
Such applets build further Guy Denning, is displayed on the
barriers between finished SoundToys website. Two of her digital
Left The Whores of Babylon artwork and methods of collages feature in the Field of Vision:
By Beth Porter production; not only can digital Extremes exhibition and can be viewed
artists originate a work after online: www.field-of-vision.net

Intellect Quarterly | 7
Q&A
iQuote » “Film will only become an art when its materials are as inexpensive as pencil and paper.” – Jean Cocteau

Susan Hayward Journal Editor


piece where appropriate before tional resonance – but again in 2005; Illinois University Press
resubmitting. the recent spate of violent films, is prepared to publish work on
How does French Cinema fit into cinema’s it is interesting to note that the French Cinema which is excel-
global eco system? films directed by women in this lent news for the global market;
A difficult question to answer. context had seemingly exported finally there is the long-stand-
At one point French Cinema better than those made by men ing MUP series, begun 1998,
was the leader (up to 1914). (see Baise moi, A ma soeur, Sex is which is still continuing to pro-
Since then in terms of produc- comedy – all women directors; duce good studies on individual
tion output, in the West, it has versus La Vie de Jesus, Seul contre film directors. {
always ranked in the top four tous, Irreversible).

‘In the recent spate of violent films, it is FURTHER READING


interesting to note that the films directed Studies in French Cinema
Three Issues Per Volume | £180
by women had seemingly exported Studies in French Cinema
better than those made by men.’ (SFC) is the only journal
published in English devoted
exclusively to French cinema,
What drew you to the idea of starting cinemas (always after Hol- What is the best film you have seen in the providing scholars, teachers
an academic journal dealing with French lywood, I am afraid). In more last twelve months? and students from around the
Cinema? global terms, it (no more than Another difficult question, world with a consistent quality
For two reasons: It was becom- Hollywood) cannot hope to out- partly because I see so many of academic investigation
ing abundantly clear to me that strip Indian Cinema in impor- and I tend to forget titles across the full breadth of the
whilst there was a growing field tance – or export practices – but after a while! Caché is a film I subject of French Cinema.
of researchers in French Cin- I suspect that in terms of actual have seen recently that stands Contributors scrutinize the
cultural context of various
ema, there was no real outlet in output that it ranks in the top out. However, whilst it is an
works and the diverse stylistic
Anglophone journals for a con- ten. As an export item, howev- intriguing even brilliant film, approaches that infuse the
sistent or systematic study of er, it only fares reasonably well. it is really somewhat flawed visual fabric of this genre.
that area. Secondly, It was also Language is, arguably, the first in its premise. The very best Areas covered include: film
the case that there were certain major barrier; but I have a feel- film for my money that I can history, film genre and film
periods or domains of French ing that it comes down more remember seeing is in fact not trends, film technique and
Cinema which still remained crucially to the dominant types a French film but a British one, cinematic theory with each
unexplored or, at the very best, of cinema France produces. It The Constant Gardener. It carries section providing in-depth
interviews, research materials
under-developed (e.g. silent is often claimed that French all the elements I admire in a
and thought provoking
cinema, 1950s, 1970s) as well as comedy does not export or film: excellent camera work and comment.
domains (e.g. popular genres, cross over well (but there have editing, a plot of integrity and
sound and other technologies been notable exceptions such as consummate acting.
within industrial practice). Colinne Serreau’s Trois hommes And the best book?
How do you feel your readers will see your et un couffin, Josiane Balasko’s The quality of published work
journal as unique? Gazon Maudit, so it might be a on French Cinema is so high I
Because it is the only one of its gender thing!). However, there am not going to venture down
kind at present! Furthermore are many other types of film this risky path. But I will say
the articles are rigorously which, whilst fine for indig- that there have been some
refereed; we encourage young enous consumption, thanks to exciting new series coming out:
scholars to submit; and we as- their subject matter, appear to the I.B. Tauris series on French
sist authors to improve on their not carry enough of an interna- Film, a new venture begun in

8 | Intellect Quarterly
PASSION
IN MOTION
(PICTURES)

Film International.
Dialogue around the moving image.
Published as a bi-monthly, full colour
journal, Film International covers all
aspects of film culture in a visually
The recent issue explores
the extensive yet relatively dynamic way. This new breed of film
underexposed realm of film
literature and criticism. The magazine brings together established
articles expose the intricate
terrain of film writing, with a film scholars with renowned journalists
particular focus on English-
language contexts. Contributions to provide an informed and animated
range from memoirs on the
profession of UK film publishing commentary on the spectacle of world
and the documentation of film
history, to scrutiny of film cinema and commercial cinema.
literature in India & reception
studies of primetime TV shows. Image above The Road to Guantanamo. Directed by Michael Winterbottom

ISSUE 20 NOW AVAILABLE. 8 WWW.FILMINT.NU


Cultural Studies
iQuote » “Culture is the widening of the mind and of the spirit.” – Jawaharlal Nehru

Regeneration: A reinvention?
Simon Roodhouse thinks it’s time to redefine this often used but misunderstood term.

R
egeneration is a fashionable international political concept ing substantial public funds as a primary means of avoiding long-term
and is used extensively, which might benefit from a ‘make- unemployment and social disruption. This of course involves existing
over’, perhaps to encourage discourse, as reinvention. So why public agencies, giving them a new reason for existence and some cas-
consider regeneration as reinvention, and what are the implications? es new ones created such as development corporations. More often
It is after all fundamental human nature to invent, innovate, em- than not the ultimate solution is buildings value led.
ploy imagination and create. All of these activities by their very defini- This is not just a 1970s and 1980s phenomenon, but rather a long
tion break rules and conventions, provide new insights, new directions term historical trend, with the moves from a 19th century agricultural
and one way or another extend horizons. In other words, creativity is economy to a 20th century post-industrial economy and so on. For
at the heart of regeneration. example, more recently we have seen the progressive transfer of call
So why is there so much conservatism and nostalgia, lingering in centres to India, the collapse of the clothing manufacturing base in
the past (heritage), the good old days and all that? Is it because what United Kingdom and a further erosion of primary activities such as
we know we trust and ‘newness’ brings risks and uncertainty? Or as farming with the rapid reduction in milk production, where increas-
has often been said by more than one change agent: if we always do ing quantities of being purchased from countries such as Italy. Life
what we have always done, we will always get what we always had. goes on and we have to find alternatives.
For those that benefit from an established status quo, then change is In addition, people are changing too with continuous immigra-
unnecessary and this argument makes sense. There is then no reason tion, significant increases in single parent families, changing patterns
for the individuals benefiting from the prevailing establishment to of house ownership, a greater numbers of females in work, more self-
change and they even have a vested interest in keeping things as they employed and continuing poverty coupled with poor education in de-
are for as long as possible, whatever the veloped countries.
consequences for other people. ‘An approach to be adopted This affects all spheres of activity in
Where does this leave us? It seems society including education, economics
that reinvention only occurs when here is to focus on the concept and culture. In the case of culture, it is
things get very bad. So, for example,
the collapse of the car industry, the im-
of the inherent creativity of in my view providing the opportunity for
the reconceptualisation and valuation
plosion of the textiles industry and steel the individual and cultural of cultural activity as businesses. This is
manufacturing have all in their own to be welcomed as a means of democra-
terms forced government to reinvent
activity as business, leaving the tisation. So how is this happening? The
businesses, both public and private, in determination of any corporate introduction of cultural/ cultural indus-
the geographical areas most affected to try quarters has undoubtedly stimulated
provide jobs to replace those that have aesthetic to market interactions a broader view of these issues.
been lost: an economic and social ar- and public cultural agencies.’ An approach to be adopted here is
gument with implications for cultural to focus on the concept of the inherent
change. Often there are misguided creativity of the individual and cultural
short term responses such as construc- activity as business, leaving the deter-
tion projects, and other job generating mination of any corporate aesthetic to
activities including in the case of Liv- market interactions and public cultural
erpool, the garden festival – what hap- agencies. This then leads us to consider
pened to that - and now the capital of the emerging global interest in the cre-
culture 2008 have introduced employ- ative and cultural industries as a partic-

10 | Intellect Quarterly
Regeneration
iQuote » “Why is it that we are more comfortable seeing two men holding guns than holding hands?” – Ernest Gaines

immediately answered. The judgment of excellence is simple (fitness


for purpose), and funding becomes conventionally based on business
planning models. So the issue for public sector policy and funding
agencies responsible for implementation is more to do with how to
support the establishment and growth of cultural businesses as op-
posed to making aesthetic peer group decisions about the quality of
the individual’s creative output, which is a subjective procedure.
Such an alternative perspective allows us to consider a more sus-
tainable future for the arts and heritage as cultural businesses. Fund-
ing becomes based on a business model, and as a consequence the
cultural public sector agency role changes to provide business support
ularly significant economic development phenomenon. It enables us in developing this sector just like any other industrial economic activ-
not only to recognise the creative individual but also to view cultural ity. It leads to the suggestion that large businesses and the education
activity without the constraints of traditional frameworks, notions of sector take over the responsibility for research and development. In
excellence, and long-standing, largely Victorian ideas of aesthetics. this way, government ensures that cultural risk and innovation is nur-
The concept was derived from an interest in the knowledge economy, tured. No special pleading is required, and the art for arts sake argu-
and the definition employed largely pragmatic: ment typified in an essay by the Secretary of State for Culture Media
‘Those activities which have their origin in individual creativity, and Sport, Tessa Jowell in 2004 is avoided. A wider range of funding
skill and talent, and which have a potential for wealth and job creation agencies with interests in social and economic development can be-
through the generation and exploitation of intellectual property.’ (Cre- come involved in supporting and developing the businesses.
ative Industries Task Force 1998) So there is a genuine opportunity, in my view, to engage in this
It was the Labour-controlled Greater London Council (GLC) who in- development influence it and democratise. {
stigated a significant challenge to the definitional status quo in the early
1980s at a time of high unemployment, significant industrial decline
and diminishing public funds for the arts. These circumstances gave FURTHER READING
rise to a re-appraisal of the role and function of the ‘traditional’ arts in Cultural Quarters:
economic terms, and in relation to the introduction of new technologies Principles and Practice
such as instant printing, cassette recording and video making. By Simon Roodhouse | £29.95, $59.95
For the first time, the concept of culture as an industry in a public This definitive book provides a conceptual
policy context was introduced. The arts, context for cultural quarters including the
cultural sustainability, a detailed discussion
described by the GLC as the ‘traditional
arts’, were subsumed into a broader def-
‘It was the Labour-controlled of the salient principles of urban design

initional framework which included ‘the Greater London Council (GLC) and planning. To examine these issues, the
book presents several extensive case studies
electronic forms of cultural production
and distribution – radio, television, re-
who instigated a significant drawn from Northern England, Ireland and
Vienna to position the emergence of specific
cords and video – and the diverse range challenge to the definitional cultural areas within a historical, spatial and
social context as well as the economics
of popular cultures which exist in Lon-
don’ (London Industrial Strategy 1985). status quo in the early 1980s at of maintaining the respective districts
incorporating the critical role of universities.
The eventual successor body, the Lon- a time of high unemployment, Extending this investigation, the author
provides an explicit practical analysis of an
don Assembly and the executive Mayor
of London have picked up the theme significant industrial decline old northern industrial revolution town in
the shadow of Manchester, Bolton and the
again (London Development Agency, and diminishing public funds Borough Council’s moves towards establishing
a cultural quarter in the town centre, with
2003) with a focus on intervention in
the creative industries networks and for the arts.’ references to previous management and
funding models employed by Birmingham
linkages. City Council and the British Museum. The
If consideration is then given to ac- book offers a concise illustration of how
tivities including the arts and heritage cultural practice is maintained and expanded
within an urban environment. Available Now
as businesses, (the cultural industries)
Simon Roodhouse is Professor in Creative
with products, services and markets Industries at the University of the Arts, London.
then, for example access questions are

Intellect Quarterly | 11
Film&Television
iQuote » “Film is one of the three universal languages, the other two: mathematics and music.” – Frank Capra

Women at the helm


in ‘God’s own country’
Kerala International Film Festival (9–16 December 2005) By Gönül Dönmez-Colin

T
here are few film festivals in the Gandhi is slowly rising to power, when
world that are run by a woman, the practice of child brides as well as
and even fewer that open with shutting up the widows in ashrams was
a film made by a woman, according to prevalent, although more for economi-
German film-maker, Margarethe von cal reasons than religious customs. The
Trotta who came to Kerala to deliver the film opens as precocious eight-year-old
Aravindan lecture, named to honour the Chuyia, recently widowed by the death
memory of one of the best film-makers of her aged husband is dropped by her
of this tiny southern state of India. Her father at an ashram. The dilapidated
topic, needless to say, was ‘the place of building is run by Madhumati, an obese
women film directors in film-making’. woman in her seventies who dominates
Kerala is the first state in the world to over the widows. She uses Kalyani (Lisa
elect-by-vote a communist government Deepa Mehta’s Water, 2005 Ray), a young widow – the only one
in 1957; a state where literacy is 99 per © Devyani Saltzman whose head is not shaven – for sex trade
cent; life expectancy rate, both male and with the Brahmin gentry across the riv-
female, is over 70, the highest in India, whereas infant mortality rate er to raise money for the ashram. But when Kalyani becomes romanti-
is the lowest; where Hindus, Christians and Muslims (and a long time cally involved with the progressive son of one of the Brahmin families,
ago even the Jews) have lived peacefully side-by-side. The film festival, the fragile order of the ashram is broken.
which celebrated its tenth anniversary this year stresses these unique Water focuses on the oppressive traditions against women in patri-
qualities of the state in its selection of films that foreground human archal societies, locating the new possibilities that Gandhi’s rebellion
issues. The competition section comprises of films from Asia, Africa against the British may bring on the periphery of the film’s narra-
and Latin America, the World Cinema section offers a wider perspec- tive. Whilst little Chuyia joins the Gandhi train in the final scene, the
tive of recent trends, Indian cinema and Malayalam cinema (Malay- message of the director may not necessarily point to salvation for the
alam is the language spoken by Keralites) showcase the recent crop of Chuyias of India. Widow ashrams are not entirely a thing of the past,
the year and the retrospectives and homages revolve around themes as the closing lines of the film poignantly remind us.
and/or film personalities to cater for a remarkably extensive range of Water is lavish in its cinematography and the undertone of the nar-
film lovers. rative that reigns sensationalism is particularly praiseworthy although
This year the festival was opened by India born, naturalized Cana- the subject matter, which would have benefited from a deeper focus,
dian Deepa Mehta’s Water (2005), which, after Fire (1996) and Earth somewhat swims on the surface.
(1998) concludes her ‘elements trilogy’. Mehta is no stranger to con- In the competitive section, the international jury, headed by French
troversy. Fire, starring remarkable Shabana Azmi and sensual Nandita film-maker Bertrand Tavernier had to judge fourteen films, several of
Das insulted the ‘family values’ of many Indians who were shocked to which, such as Dame Sobh (Day Break) (2005) by Hamid Rahmanian,
see a lesbian love affair between two sister-in-laws on the wide screen. an Iranian expatriate living in New York and Hat mua roi bao lau (Bride
The reaction to Water preceded the actual shooting. The original set in of Silence) (2005) by Vietnamese brother-sister team, Doan Minh
Varanasi was destroyed by Hindu fanatics in 2000 who rioted in large Phuong and Doan T. Nighia were outstanding. The latter won the
numbers and burned effigies of Mehta. Production resumed several Best Debut Film Award of $4000 for its directors. Kekexili: Mountain
years later in Sri Lanka with a different cast as the previous leads, Sha- Patrol (2004), a China/US co-production by Lu Chuan about rare an-
bana Azmi and Nandita Das withdrew after receiving death threats. telope poachers in Tibet seemed to be the favourite for all, winning
Water is set in 1938 in colonial India during a period of uncertainty as Silver Crow Pheasant for Best Director ($6000), and the Audience and

12 | Intellect Quarterly
Kerala Film Festival
iQuote » “A film is never really good unless the camera is an eye in the head of a poet.” – Orson Welles

Fipresci (Federation of Film Critics) awards. However, the choice of sidebars were several. However, a special programme on Turkish cine-
the jury for the Golden Crow Pheasant Award ($20,000) went to Sheng ma curated by myself attracted the curiosity of many film lovers, whose
Si Jie (Stolen Life) (2005) by Li Shaohong, a prominent ‘fifth genera- knowledge of the film industry of this country is rather limited to works
tion’ film-maker from China, who happens to be a woman. of masters such as Yılmaz Güney and the Palme d’Or winner, Yol (The
Women’s triumph in Kerala this year extended to other sections Way) (1982). ‘Golden Years of Turkish Cinema – 1970s–1980s’ began
as well. ‘Beyond the Veil: Women Films from Maghreb’ brought to with a landmark film, Güney’s Umut (Hope) (1970) and moved on to
Trivananthapuram, the capital city of Kerala where the festival is two classics, Sürü (The Herd) (1979) and Yol (1982) directed by Güney’s
held, such gems as Les Silences du Palais (The Silences of the Palace) assistants, Zeki Ökten and Serif Gören, respectively. Hazal (1979) by
(1994) by Moufida Tlatli; Miel et cendres (Honey and Ashes) (1996) by Ali Özgentürk, a protégé of Güney and an important film-maker in
Nadia Fares; Keid Ensa (Women’s Wiles) (1999) by Farida Ben Lyziad his own right; Anayurt Oteli (Motherland Hotel) (1986) by Ömer Kavur,
and also a very fresh and daring film by young Raja Amari, Satin Rouge Turkey’s truly auteur film-maker who passed away in 2005; and last but
(Red Satin) (2002) that shook the foun- not the least, Selvi Boylum, Al Yazmalım
dations of a hypocritical Muslim soci- ‘Kerala is the first state in (The Girl With the Red Scarf ) (1977),
ety when it came out. a classic from Atıf Yılmaz, a veteran of
One more important contribution to the world to elect-by-vote a Turkish cinema who has maintained
the over all theme of women – which, communist government in 1957; the title of ‘women’s film-maker’ for
ironically, grew by accident and not decades, completed the panorama.
intention on the part of the organizers a state where literacy is 99 per ‘Young Turks: Heimat Films from
– was the homage to Isabelle Huppert,
‘Woman of Many Faces’, displaying her
cent; life expectancy rate, both Germany’ was a challenging contrast,
displaying a different kind of cinema
exceptional talent in ten unforgettable male and female, is over 70, the coming from a culture of hybridity.
roles in memorable films from La dentel-
liere (The Lacemaker) (1977) by Claude
highest in India, whereas infant The most celebrated film-maker of this
movement is no doubt Fatih Akın, who
Goretta to La Pianiste (The Piano Teach- mortality rate is the lowest; merited the Golden Bear in Berlin with
er) (2001) by Michael Haneke. The lat- his Head On (2004). Two of his short
ter almost caused a riot when the news where Hindus, Christians and films, Geturkt (Weed) (1997) and Wir
spread about the ‘sexy’ content of the Muslims (and a long time Haben Vergerssen Zuruckzukehren (I Think
film and crowds of (male) spectators About Germany: We Forgot to Go Back)
who arrived for the repeat screening ago even the Jews) have lived (2000) were delightful to watch as well
lost control of their emotions in their
anxiety to grab a seat.
peacefully side-by-side.’ as Kutlug Ataman’s Lola und Bilidikid
(Lola and Billy the Kid) (1998) on Turk-
Kim Ki-duk’s retrospective was an- ish transvestites in Berlin.
other section that acquired the favour Attending a film festival in India far
Mehta’s Water, 2005
of such crowds. Despite the fact that Deepa © Devyani Saltzman
surpasses any other film event. The
Indian music videos constantly shown opening and closing ceremonies of Ker-
on television leave nothing for the ala International Film Festival, held in
imagination, particularly with the ever- an open amphitheatre with all the dig-
popular pelvic gyrations, Indian movies nitaries of the state seated on stage, sets
still shy away from showing couples the tone for a different experience. The
kissing, let alone indulging in a sexual lighting of the Magic Lamp to inaugurate
act. Needless to say, the South Korean the festival is magical to say the least.
master had serious aficionados as well What was particularly ‘heaven sent’ this
for whom it was a treat to discover an year was the thunder and lightning that
exceptional film-maker whose work is arrived as the dancers performed the tra-
probably never distributed in India. ditional ‘Monsoon of Kerala’, a blend of
Short films, documentaries, jury Indian classical and folk arts, on stage.
films, homage to Cuban Santiago Al- It is abundantly clear why this tiny state
varez, to ‘Living Legends’ – Jean-Luc on the Malabar coast proudly calls itself
Godard and MT Vasudevan Nair – the ‘God’s Own Country’! {

Intellect Quarterly | 13
Profile

Martin Tompkins
If you subscribe to an Intellect journal, chances are you’ve seen
some of this Bath based photographer’s work.

A lot of the images you take for Intellect can be tweaked and the whole ‘photo- ‘...I think the whole digital ‘revolution’
are abstract images. Do you find these graph never lies’ thing just doesn’t stand
particularly challenging and what do you up anymore. What are your thoughts on has fostered a tolerence for error. In
consider a successful abstract image? this and where do you draw the line with
The process is the same as for picture manipulation?
turn this tolerance is producing a
any kind of successful photogra- I was always brought up with generation of lazy button pushers.’
phy. In fact abstraction overlaps the discipline that led me to get
all fields. Creative process is the picture right in the camera. It’s just Photoshop instead of tion of lazy button pushers. I
based on technique. You take But taking the picture is only cross processing, burning, don’t know how many times
your current knowledge of a half the process. dodging, selinium toning and I’ve heard art directors repeat
technique, apply it to an idea, Manipulation always has old school darkroom montage. the line, ‘it’s alright, we can
then experiment. All the usual had a part in photography and So in that way I’m happy with photoshop it later’.
artistic rules apply. Some vari- the camera has always lied. manipulation. I still have a The music and fashion photographer
ables are naturally left to chance A photographer can read a problem with photographers David Bailey once said that it takes a lot
with a photograph. It’s that ele- situation and choose what the who crop their photographs of looking before you learn to see the
ment of chance that can progress viewer sees. Vital pieces of though. Bresson used to crop. ordinary. What do you think he meant by
ideas quicker. information can be purposefully I also think the whole digital ‘the ordinary’?
We’re living in an age where everything left out of the frame in order ‘revolution’ has fostered a When I think of Bailey’s music
we look at we regard with a certain level to mislead a narrative. Pictures tolerance for error. In turn this and fashion work, I mostly re-
of suspicion because we know images were tweaked before digital. tolerance is producing a genera- member the expressions on the

14 | Intellect Quarterly
Profile
Martin Tompkins » Photographer

subjects’ faces.
The more portraits you take
the better you become at under-
standing when someone’s face is
telling the truth. The skill is not
to force how the sitter reacts but
to encourage the small character
traits that make them who they
are. To a certain extent then,
the ordinary I think Bailey talks
about refers to the face that the
sitter simply has ‘ordinarily’
when engaging with a friend.
Ansel Adams said: There are no rules for
good photographs, there are only good
photographs. Do you agree?
Yes. When you learn the rules
you get bored with them. Then
you break the rules and change
the boundaries.
What projects are you working on at the
moment?
Trips to Hungary and Norway.
The first being part of a larger
project with three other photog-
raphers looking at twin cities
of Bath. Should be interesting
– each photographer will take
their own angle on the life of the
city for an exhibition happening
in September and an accompa-
nying book.
The second is a collaboration
with a friend to photograph
Northern Norway inspired by the
electronic music that has grown
from the more bleak, isolated
areas of the country. Other proj-
ects include a travelling exhibi-
tion of portraits for the summer,
Interior work with the invention
Art centre in Bath and shoot-
ing band profiles for Decode
Magazine.
Tell us about the best tv programme/se-
ries you’ve seen in the last 6 months.
BBC’s Planet earth. Production,
direction, narration, camera
Above
Journal cover images work and engineering all from
Opposite Page people at the top of their game.
Nashville ‘03
Top Left/Right Mix in the most beautiful and
Luke ‘06 interesting environments on the
Jules (cowboy) ‘06
Bottom Right
planet and you have pretty damn
Patrick ‘06 good high definition TV. {

Intellect Quarterly | 15
Intellect Journals
The Intellect Journals Collection represents a comprehensive
overview of emerging ideas in creative media, such as: art,
film, television, design, education, language, gender study and
international culture. It comprises 20 peer reviewed journals at a
discount of 50% off their normal price. Your library receives a print
copy of 3 issues of each journal. All users at the the institution will
also gain permanent on-line access to the same material. The entire
print and electronic collection costs £1,800 in 2006.
For more information or to sample an issue of each journal for free please contact journals@intellectbooks.com.

Film Theatre Culture Art

New Cinemas: Journal of Studies in European Studies in French Cinema Studies in Hispanic
Contemporary Film Cinema ISSN 1471-5880 Cinemas
ISSN 1474-2756 ISSN 1741-1548 ISSN 1478-0488

Volume 4, 2006 Volume 3, 2006 Volume 6, 2006 Volume 3, 2006


Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180
Print & full electronic access Print & full electronic access Print & full electronic access Print & full electronic access

International Journal of Journal of Organisational International Journal of Journal of Media Practice


Media & Cultural Politics Transformation and Technology Management & ISSN 1468-2753
ISSN 1740-8296 Social Change Sustainable Development
ISSN 1477-9633 ISSN 1474-2748
Volume 2, 2006 Volume 3, 2006 Volume 5, 2006 Volume 7, 2006
Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180
Print & full electronic access Print & full electronic access Print & full electronic access Print & full electronic access

16 | Intellect Quarterly
www.intellectbooks.com / journals@intellectbooks.com

International Journal of European Journal of International Journal of The Radio Journal:


Francophone Studies American Culture Iberian Studies International studies in
ISSN 1368-2679 ISSN 1466-0407 ISSN 1364-971X Broadcast & Audio Media
ISSN 1476-4504
Volume 9, 2006 Volume 25, 2006 Volume 19, 2006 Volume 4, 2006
Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180
Print & full electronic access Print & full electronic access Print & full electronic access Print & full electronic access

Learning and Teaching The Portuguese Journal of Studies in Theatre and Journal of Performance
in the Social Sciences Social Science Performance Arts and Digital Media
ISSN 1740-5866 ISSN 1476-413X ISSN 1468-2761 ISSN 1479-4713

Volume 3, 2006 Volume 5, 2006 Volume 26, 2006 Volume 2, 2006


Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180
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Journal of Visual Art Education Through Art Technoetic Arts: A Journal Art, Design &
Practice ISSN 1743-5234 of Speculative Research Communication in
ISSN 1470-2029 ISSN 1477-965X Higher Education
ISSN 1474-273X
Volume 5, 2006 Volume 2, 2006 Volume 4, 2006 Volume 5, 2006
Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180 Three issues / £180
Print & full electronic access Print & full electronic access Print & full electronic access Print & full electronic access

Intellect Quarterly | 17
Media Studies
iQuote » “Media is a word that has come to mean bad journalism” – Graham Greene

What harm and offence


do our media cause?
Should we be more worried than we actually are? By Andrea Millwood Hargrave

T
eenage boys shooting class mates or appalling murders with ion measurement techniques, methods for assessing harm, especially,
sexual elements are continually linked back to the (mis)use of are much more contested and difficult, and there is little agreement
particular types of media content, be they delivered by film, about the parameters that should be used.
television, the internet or even print. This describes the public face It was to seek to explore these questions – to give industry, the regu-
of moral panic about media influence. The debate then, is around the lators and, indeed, the public some facts - that a review of the evidence
harm that may be caused to children through viewing inappropriate for harm and offence across media forms was conducted. Recent re-
media content – frequently it is graphic depictions of violence that cre- search on television, radio, music, press, film, games, Internet, tele-
ate the most concern. phony, advertising as well as the regulation associated with each area
Regulators are seeking to understand the changing parameters that were evaluated. The aim was to provide an assessment of the potential
have developed with the convergence of media delivery platforms, which for harm and offence.
offer faster, easier access to material that was hitherto difficult to find. An immediate finding was that the linking of the terms ‘harm and
In this process, the concepts of ‘harm’ and ‘offence’ are gaining promi- offence’ is causing confusion. It is not clear what the difference be-
nence. The 2003 Communications Act changed the broadcasting stan- tween them is taken to be when considered in a legal or regulatory
dards debate in the UK by moving from the previously held concepts context. In terms of research evidence, other than in relation to legal or
of ‘good taste and decency’ to offering ‘adequate protection... from philosophical discussions, there is nothing that links them together in
the inclusion of offensive and harmful material’. These concepts echo the academic literature. Further, while there is an extensive literature
those in the European Union’s Television without Frontiers Directive, on harm (usually labelled ‘effects’), there is little academic research on
currently being debated in a revised form. The debate continues to pivot offence. This may be a methodological bias on the part of researchers
on the exposure of minors to potentially or it may be a political bias, based on a
harmful or offensive material, although ‘While harmful and offensive concern that research on offence opens
there are other sensibilities considered the door to censorship. What research
such as offence or harm caused to those
material is, in principle, there is in the area of offence, has been
from minority groups. distinguished from that which is conducted by the regulators themselves
While harmful and offensive material or by industry.
is, in principle, distinguished from that illegal... it is not easy to define Much recent regulatory debate has
which is illegal (obscenity, child abuse the boundaries in a robust talked of technology-neutral regula-
images, incitement to racial hatred, tion and it was hoped that it would be
etc), it is not easy to define the boundar- and consensual fashion. What possible to look across content-delivery
ies in a robust and consensual fashion.
What content is considered acceptable
content is considered acceptable platforms, and evaluate the likelihood
for harm and offence as a content-
by today’s standards, norms and values, by today’s standards, norms and driven rather than technology-derived
and by whom? Borderline and unac-
ceptable material may include a range
values, and by whom?’ process. Would equivalent content have
a similar effect or influence on individu-
of contents, most prominently - though als, regardless of the method of deliv-
not exclusively - ‘adult content’ of vari- ery? In fact, the review found a minimal
ous kinds, and these may incur consid- amount of cross-platform research, and
erable public concern. While norms of this is a yawning gap as regulators and
taste and decency can be tracked, with others base current policy decisions on
some reliability, through standard opin- incomplete or sparse data.

18 | Intellect Quarterly
Harm & Offence
iQuote » “A good newspaper is a nation talking to itself.” – Arthur Miller

The evidence also shows that there are omissions in research knowl-
edge about the impact of certain media – either because they are too FURTHER READING
‘old’, such as print and therefore less researched now, or because they Harm and Offence in Media
are too ‘new’ to have a body of evidence behind them, such as mobile Content: A Review of the Evidence
telephony. However, there is clear evidence that older media still exert By Andrea Millwood Hargrave & Sonia Livingstone
significant influence and that the way in which a print news story (an £19.95, $39.95
‘old’ medium) is framed may affect the attitudes of its readers. For In today’s media and
example, it can be argued that potentially negative attitudes towards communications environment,
substantial segments of the population can be created or sustained pressing questions arise regarding
through the way the news about them is reported while the presenta- the media’s potential for harm,
tion of partial information (in the area of science, for example) can especially in relation to children.
lead to a misinformed public. This book offers a unique and
The potential influence of newer content delivery forms is unknown comprehensive analysis of the
but policy assumptions are being made, with policy decisions being latest research on content-related
based on evidence from media delivery platforms that are dissimilar media harm and offence. For
in how they are used. For example, the potential effect of antisocial the first time, a balanced, critical
content delivered via mobile telephony on people has not been sub- account brings together findings
ject to any systematic or coherent research, but the ‘evidence’ of it has on both established and newer
become part of the public/media debate. interactive media. Arguing against
The paucity of data from a converged or converging environment asking simple questions about
leads us to argue that the search for simple and direct causal effects media effects, the case is made for
of the media continues to be inappropriate. Rather, this should be re- contextualising media content and
placed by a risk-based approach that seeks to identify the range of fac- use within a multi-factor, risk-based
tors that directly, and indirectly through interactions with each other, framework. Available now.
combine to explain particular social phenomena. The research shows
that each social problem of concern (e.g. aggression, prejudice, obe- Children and Propaganda
sity, bullying, etc) is associated with a distinct and complex array of By Judith Proud | £14.95, $29.95
putative causes. The task then, is to identify and contextualise the role This volume brings together three
of the media within that array. The result studies which demonstrate how
will be a more complex explanation of ‘So we argue that the question the everyday literature of youth
what are, undoubtedly, complex social has been subverted at key points
problems. This should, in turn, permit should no longer be ‘do the in twentieth-century European
a balanced judgement of the role played media cause violence?’ but history, to promote the ideologies
of a dominant political regime.
by the media on a case–by–case basis.
In some instances, this may reduce the ‘what factors may be important Concentrating primarily on the
specific area of children’s fiction,
concentrated focus on the media – for
example, by bringing into view many
in adding to the potential of the Children and Propaganda focuses
other factors that contribute to present media to cause (harm/offence) on the propaganda writing of
levels of aggression in society. In other Vichy France; the cult of seafaring
cases, it may increase the focus on the
among a range of factors?’ in Nazi Germany; and images
media – for example, in understanding of empire and decolonisation in
the possible role played by the Internet France between 1930 and 1962.
in facilitating paedophiles’ access to In addition to close textual study,
children. So we argue that the ques- works are located within the wider
tion should no longer be ‘do the media context and discourses that shaped
cause violence?’ but ‘what factors may their production, dissemination
be important in adding to the potential and reception, giving the volume
of the media to cause (harm/offence) a broad, cross-disciplinary range of
among a range of factors?’ { appeal. Available now.

Intellect Quarterly | 19
Q&A
iQuote » “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.” – Wiliam Butler Yeats

Amorey Gethin
The Author of Language and Thought & The Art and Science of Learning
Languages shares with us some thoughts on these themes.

Why did you choose Intellect as your publisher?


From its creation, Intellect has What is the underlying argument put
been a bold and innovative forward in your books?
publisher, unafraid of giving a In Antilinguistics and Language
voice to unfashionable work that and Thought I try to show that
challenges the orthodoxies of academic linguistics consists
the intellectual establishment. largely of mere analysis for the
This was exactly what I needed. sake of analysis, and state-
How many books have you published with ments which are often untrue or
Intellect and why? obvious and trivial, wrapped up
Three. Antilinguistics: a critical in would-be profound jargon.
assessment of modern linguistic Modern linguistics, despite
theory and practice, in 1990; The Art vague general claims to the con-
and Science of Learning Languages, trary, cannot point to anything
which I wrote together with a that it has contributed either
remarkable Swedish linguist and to our understanding of the
polyglot, Erik Gunnemark, in human mind or to the practi-
1996; and Language and Thought: cal task of learning languages.
a rational enquiry into their nature Moreover, academic writers
and relationship, in 1999. The first like Noam Chomsky and Steven
and last with Intellect precisely Pinker have helped to exalt lan- is the almost universal and most circles. However, no academic
because they do oppose the aca- guage to a status in the public fundamental flaw in language- critic has so far attempted to
demic linguistics establishment, mind that it should not have. learning throughout the world. answer any of my arguments.
and The Art and Science of Learning Thought is not language; but The truth is that one has to do Non-academic linguists who
Languages at the invitation of most people do not understand all the work oneself. Language read these books reacted favour-
Intellect itself. The chairman this. Language is an immensely teachers – or better, language ably. I can only ask that people
was himself personally familiar powerful but dangerous instru- guides – have two duties: to without preconceived ideas on
with my methods! This is not ment that almost constantly show students how to learn, and the subject should read them
quite such a provocative book as corrupts thought and tends to to answer questions. and judge for themselves.
the other two, but does offer an take it over. What sort of public reception have your The Art and Science of Learning
approach to learning languages A basic message in The Art and books received? Languages was received very
that is very different from the Science of Learning Languages is As was inevitable, the linguistics favourably by many readers. But
one that currently holds sway in that the way students rely more books provoked a very hostile here again, nobody in profes-
the world. or less entirely on their teachers reaction in academic linguistic sional circles has been prepared

20 | Intellect Quarterly
Q&A
iQuote » “Whatever is good to know is difficult to learn.” – Greek Proverb

‘The global English-teaching industry take responsibility for their own


FURTHER READING
improvement.
is an unspoken collusion between What alternative do these anti-correction
The Art and Science of
Learning Languages
teaching institutions, university writers suggest?
By Amorey Gethin and Erik
They argue that time spent on
language departments and course book grammar corrections is time not
Gunnemark| £14.95, $29.95
This book offers a genuinely
publishers to avoid any honest and spent on ‘more important mat-
ters’ such as the content, organi-
practical framework for
learning any language. It
open debate on the subject.’ zation and logical development provides detailed advice on
of arguments in compositions. studying on your own or in
I believe following such advice combination with courses,
to debate those ideas that ques- work, with full explanations. would be doing a great disser- often drawing on the
tion the status quo in language- I told them only to write what vice to students. No training in experiences of the authors and
teaching around the world. they were certain was correct, essay construction is going to others who have mastered
many languages.
Do you believe that students should be or, if they were not certain, to stop students writing ‘I am here
With the constantly increasing
treated as free agents who can deliber- insert a mark to show this. I told since ten days’ or ‘I am look- contact between the peoples
ately control their learning themselves? them to make a loose-leaf list ing forward to see you’. To see of the world, the growth of
Yes, this is absolutely essential. of their mistakes, note against how absurd the anti-correction interest in the learning of
But unfortunately most books each mistake how many times argument is, simply consider second and third languages is
in the global English-teaching they made it, and consult the list that no polyglot would ever set for many years to come. A
industry discuss at some length when they wrote. And I insisted ask for their mistakes not to special message of the book is
the importance of self-reliance
what teachers do, or should or that if they were not constantly be corrected. Moreover, I have
based on a positive approach
should not do, but not what asking me questions, they were always deplored the inclusion of and efficient organisation.
students should do. This is a not learning properly. By getting essay construction as one of the
sort of behaviourism: provide a students to work like this I had criteria for judging examinees’
stimulus and see what response exceptional success in helping compositions. It is very unfair.
you get. The emphasis is placed them to pass their EFL exams. Essay writing and mastering a
entirely on the practice of teach- Can you give a specific example of what foreign language are two totally
ing, and academic research you call ‘behaviourism’? different skills.
is directed into the effects of Well yes, a comparatively recent If teachers really want to
various pedagogies, when we one. Since our book was pub- help their students, then this
should be concerned instead lished, in fact, the argument has is the advice they should offer:
with learning. emerged that although students only come to one lesson a week
As a teacher of English, when- want and expect to have their instead of fifteen or twenty, and
ever I had a new class, the first grammar mistakes corrected, it come one by one, and spend Language and Thought:
thing I told them was that they is useless to do so; they con- most of your time doing real A rational enquiry into
had to learn how to learn for tinue to make exactly the same learning on your own. How- their nature & relationship
themselves. I spoke about the mistakes over and over again. ever, as things are, it is virtu- By Amorey Gethin | £9.95, $19.95
basic principles of how languag- And the proponents of this view ally impossible for teachers to This is a shortened and
es work. I warned of the dangers maintain that correction can ac- suggest such things. The global updated version of
of the translation mentality. tually be harmful; people do not English-teaching industry is an Antilinguistics. In a new
I offered them the maxims: like being told repeatedly that unspoken collusion between chapter the author attacks
Chomskyan linguistics as
Remembering the answer is not the they are making mistakes; their teaching institutions, univer-
expounded in Steven Pinker’s
problem; the problem is remembering motivation is weakened. sity language departments and The Language Instinct. He
the problem and Never assume the But the proper response to course book publishers to avoid goes on to show how thought
language works in the same way as this self-contradiction on the any honest and open debate on is corrupted by language, and
your own; assume it is different until part of the students is to gently the subject. Such discussion how serious the consequences
you discover otherwise. I corrected confront them with their irratio- would be a serious threat to all are for the human race.
every mistake in their written nality and explain that they must three interests. {

Intellect Quarterly | 21
Art & Design
iQuote » “There’s no retirement for an artist, it’s your way of living so there’s no end to it.” – Henry Moore

Technoetic Creativity:
K
abbalah, Judaism’s eso- raphy of the mind, revealing a
teric tradition, provides progression that draws inspi-

A Kabbalistic Perspective a symbolic language


and conceptual schema that
facilitates understanding the
ration down into the material
world from a higher source
where originality emanates:
Mel Alexenberg looks at the relationship dynamics of the creative process from the place that ‘no bird of
in contemporary technoetic art prey knows, nor has the falcon’s
between an ancient Jewish mystical tradition – art that arises from the conflu- eye seen’ (Job 28:7), ‘that no
ence of art, science, technology man has passed, nor has any
and Technoetic Art. and consciousness research. person dwelt’ (Jeremiah 2:6). I
The kabbalistic model of cre- use the kabbalistic model to
ative process is a metaphorical portray my process of creating
way of thinking derived from the responsive technoetic art-
the deep structure of biblical work, Inside/Outside: P’nim/Panim,
consciousness. It is a choreog- at MIT’s Center for Advanced
Visual Studies.
The KBL root of the Hebrew
word KaBaLah first appears in
the Bible in the word maKBiL,
which means ‘parallel’. The
biblical artist Betzalel and his
artistic collaborators covered
the Tabernacle with two large
tapestries each having fifty
loops parallel to each other
(Exodus 26:5 and Exodus 36:12).
One symbolises divine creation
and the other symbolises human
creativity. Kabbalah also refers
to receiving the esoteric tradi-
tion from one generation to the
next. I hear the word kabbalah
spoken frequently in Israel as
the supermarket checkout clerk
hands me the long paper rib-
bon saying, ‘kabbalah shelkhah,’
- ‘your receipt.’ It is meaningful
to understanding kabbalah as a
down-to-earth mystical tradition
in which a supermarket com-
puter printout and an ancient
esoteric tradition share the same
word. We all stand illiterate
before the secret language of the
digital age – bar-codes on boxes
Top P’nim/Pamim: Biofeedback generated interactive system
and bottles – that only super-
Above Torah Spectogram. Negev Mountains, Israel market lasers can read.
Right Hebrew Letters Ascending. Tzin Winderness, Israel Kabbalah explores how
Next Page Bottom Four Wings of America. Atlantic SE, Florida
Next Page Top Intergenerational Throne. Biscayne Bay, Miami inspiration is drawn down

22 | Intellect Quarterly
Feature
iQuote » “You come to nature with all her theories, and she knocks them all flat.” – Renoir

into our everyday world in ten rhythm of the chanting of words about which paths to take and
stages called sephirot (sephirah in from the Torah scroll, following which options to abandon.
singular) that are derived from them with my eyes. I was far I thought of a multitude of
biblical passages describing removed from my studio/labo- artistic options open to me
both the artist and God as cre- ratory at MIT when I suddenly for creating artworks that
ators of worlds (Exodus 35:31 and realised that the word for face, reveal interplay between inner
Chronicles 1:29). The first stage panim, and for inside, p’nim, are consciousness and outer face.
in the creative process is the written with the same Hebrew As an MIT artist with access
sephirah, Crown – faith that one letters. I sensed that I needed to electronic technologies, my
can create, anticipation that the to create portraits in which mind gravitated to creating
creative process is pleasurable dialogue between the outside digital self-generated portraits
and intention to create. With- face and inside feelings become in which internal mind/body
out this self-confidence, hope integrally one. When I told my processes and one’s facial
for gratification and the will to son what had just dawned on countenance engage in vital
create, the creative process has me, my mind left the sephirah of dialogue. As I felt satisfaction ¥

‘Kabbalah explores how inspiration is


drawn down into our everyday world in
ten stages called sephirot (sephirah in
singular) that are derived from biblical
passages describing both the artist and
God as creators of worlds (Exodus 35:31
and Chronicles 1:29).’
no beginning. Crown sets the Wisdom for the sephirah of Un-
stage for the sephirah of Wisdom derstanding. The shapeless idea
that requires a selfless state, nul- that ignited the process began to
lification of the ego that opens take form in Understanding.
gateways to supraconscious and The first three sephirot rep-
subconscious realms. When resent the artist’s intention to
active seeking ceases, when create and the cognitive dyad in
consciously preoccupied with which a flash of insight begins
unrelated activities, when we to crystallise into a viable idea.
least expect it, the germ of the The fourth sephirah, Compassion,
creative idea bursts into our represents largess, the stage in
consciousness. This sudden the creative process that is open
flash of insight is what the to all possibilities, myriad at-
kabbalah calls Wisdom. It is the tractive options that I would love
transition from nothingness to to do. Compassion is counterbal-
being, from potential to the first anced by the fifth sephirah of
moment of existence. In biblical Strength: restraint, the power to
words, ‘Wisdom shall be found set limits, to make judgments,
in nothingness’ (Job 28:12). to have the discipline to choose
In synagogue on the Sab- between myriad options. It de-
bath day, I was absorbed in the mands that I make hard choices

Intellect Quarterly | 23
024&film»feature
Art Design
exclusive
iQuote » “Art is much interview
less important than life,living
but what a pooralone
life without it.” – Robert Motherwell

Below Alexenberg lauching cyberangels on circumglobal flight. Below Right AT&T Building, New York / Angel Stopping Abraham. Digital serigraph

FURTHER READING
The Future of Art in
a Digital Age: From
Hellenistic to Hebraic
Consciousness
By Mel Alexenberg | £29.95, $59.95
This book develops the
thesis that the transition
from premodernism to
postmodernism in art of
the digital age represents
a paradigm shift from the
Hellenistic to the Hebraic
roots of Western culture.
Semiotic and morphological
analysis of art and visual
culture demonstrate the
with my choice, I departed from
the sephirah of Strength to the
‘When active seeking ceases, when contemporary confluence
between the deep structure
next stage, the sixth sephirah, consciously preoccupied with unrelated of Hebraic consciousness
Beauty. This sephirah represents
a beautiful balance between the
activities, when we least expect it, the and new directions in art
that arise along the interface
counter forces of largess and germ of the creative idea bursts into between scientific inquiry,
digital technologies, and
restraint. It is the feeling of har-
mony between all my possible our consciousness.’ multicultural expressions.
Complementing these two
options and the choices I had
analytic methodologies,
made. The sephirah of Beauty is sciousness and digital imagery. kingdom of time and space. alternative methodologies
the aesthetic core of the creative The eighth sephirah, Gracefulness, It is my making the artwork. I of kabbalah and halakhah
process in which harmonious is the glorious feeling that the constructed a console in which provide postmodern methods
integration of openness and clo- final shaping of the idea is going a participant seated in front for exploring into digital age
sure is experienced as loveliness, so smoothly that it seems as of a monitor places her finger art forms. Exemplary artworks
splendor and truth. effortless as the movements of in a plethysmograph, which are described in the text and
illustrated with photographs.
The seventh sephirah, Success, a graceful dancer. The sephirah measures internal body states
Available now.
is the feeling of being victorious of Success is an active self-con- by monitoring blood flow, while
in the quest for significance. fidence in contrast with the under the gaze of a video cam- Mel Alexenberg is an artist
and is Professor of Art
I felt that I had the power to sephirah of Gracefulness, a passive era. Digitised information about
and Jewish Thought at the
overcome any obstacles that may confidence that all is working as her internal mind/body pro- University of Judea and
stand in the way of realizing my it should. cesses triggers changes in the Samaria in Ariel, Israel, and
artwork. The Hebrew word for The ninth sephirah, Founda- image of herself that she sees Emunah College in Jerusalem.
this sephirah, netzakh, can also tion, is the sensuous bonding on the monitor. She sees her
mean ‘to conduct’ or ‘orches- of Success and Gracefulness in a face changing color, stretching,
trate’ as in the word that begins union that leads to the birth of elongating, extending, rotating
many of the Psalms. I had the the fully formed idea. It funnels or replicating in response to her
confidence that I could orches- the integrated flow of intention, feelings about seeing herself
trate all the aspects of creating a thought and emotion of the changing. My artwork, Inside/
moist media artwork that would previous eight sephirot into the Outside:P’nim/Panim, created a
forge a vital dialogue between world of physical action, into flowing digital feedback loop in
dry pixels and wet biomolecules, the tenth sephirah of Kingdom, which p’nim effects changes in
between cyberspace and real the noble realization of my panim and panim, in turn, effects
space, and between human con- concepts and feelings in the changes in p’nim. {

24 | Intellect Quarterly
Q&A
iQuote » “Poetry is a deal of joy and pain and wonder, with a dash of the dictionary.” – Kahlil Gibran

Graziella Tonfoni
Bridging the gap between literature and science.

formation Design, co-published in at least hazardous to even spell,


1998 with Scarecrow Press US; a and Intellect had the courage
really special prototype of a post to publish my scientific assess-
modern volume, as Masoud him- ments first. It basically meant
self defined it, as it had pages introducing a post-Chomskian
to be filled up and drawings to framework, of potentially very
be re-shuffled and also re-num- strong impact, during the fully
bered according to each readers’ and exclusively Chomskian age,

‘My work is meant to illustrate how


literary and poetic energy may be saved
and turned into high power harmony for
full beauty, creating the conditions for
transferring poetry from traditional set
ups into web sites and other places.’
How did you, as an Italian academic, for the next book on my ways sensitivity during the learning by by a really young scholar at the
come to choose a British publisher? of thinking about writing, but reading process. time, Graziella Tonfoni. Now
Well, I am a quite peculiar Ital- personally called up Masoud I would say that my own series those claims are widely prac-
ian and definitely a very strange Yazdani to make sure that the of closely interconnected books ticed, but not at the very start. So
academic, who happened to be publication of such a book at Intellect is really based upon it took courage and initiative to
doing research in linguistics at could happen effectively and three main volumes: Writing as a publish that first.
the Artificial Intelligence Labora- timely under his own guidance, Visual Art 1994, then reprinted in In 2003, ‘The art and science
tory at MIT during the brightest based on full trust. And so it 2000 and Communication Patterns of documentation management’,
times of AI discoveries of the did actually happen, timely and and Textual Forms, 1996, which a textbook out of a workshop I
human mind. effectively, just as Masoud had contains and displayed a brand had designed and taught myself
When it came to decide which promised Marvin it would be new model at the time along in the US, grew as a more pro-
publisher should be chosen for the case. This was back in 1993, with my most innovative theories gramming language oriented
the very first English abridge- and that was consequently for of language that I had personally toolkit, as for the collabora-
ment of some of my extended me, an author in full writing and evolved over the years. Those tion of Lakhmi Jain. The book
work in natural language, spe- researching activities, the start of lines were parallel but separated cover was provided by Douglas
cifically for writing which I had a very long, steady and positive from my other research work in Hofstadter, with an ambigram
just finished packaging (thanks collaboration with Intellect. artificial intelligence, multime- drawing by himself.
to fast and accurate professional How many books have you published with dia education and cognition. I must say that I have learnt
help by James Richardson), it Intellect and why? When my relativity of language that when it comes to extremely
was actually Marvin Minsky who There are four books listed. By extreme claims were first pub- new ideas and truly innovative
not only wrote the foreword saying four, we would include In- lished, they sounded if not crazy theories to first let them flow out ¥

Intellect Quarterly | 25
Graziella Tonfoni
iQuote » “While thought exists, words are alive and literature becomes an escape, not from, but into living” – Cyril Connolly

of my own mind, so as to have in-depth and in-breadth reading one’s basic consuming instincts, of slides; one for each emotion
them materialize into the manu- attitudes, this way infusing flows and no-one’s pleasure. displayed and disclosed.
script. Then I personally do a lot of pleasure into the full stream Are you talking about Aesthetics? What is the impact of Aesthetics on
of testing to be sure, and when I and realm of documentation Aesthetics, still from Ancient writers’ lives?
am sure and when it is time to go management. Greek root, means both ‘perceive Aesthetics may certainly play a
to print, I do like to be surround- Is your work made out of poetic asser- the beauty’ and ‘have beauty be major role in writers’ lives, as
ed by international authoritative tions or are they academic statements? perceived’, but also just ‘per- it is in fact meant to create and
voices, to discuss protect and It is only by introducing a poetic ceive’ as opposed to not being establish basic beauty and har-
possibly evolve my theories, and component, and a real high touch able to perceive i.e. ‘anaesthetic’, monious conditions, which by
still keep the same publisher all for poetry into our high tech daily i.e. what takes sensitivity and and large may enact ‘ethics’ too.
along if possible. activities, that we may actually perception away from our body Aesthetical attitudes are meant
We are really living in a time generate interpretive pleasure to perceptive system. to promote and sustain ethical
when creativity by an individual, be shared around and not just to Flows of information have behaviour and favour ethical
i.e. the Italian Renaissance be reserved for poet friends. changed our nature progres- patterns for constructive ruling
single artist model, the Leonardo to be placed on top: Aesth-etics, as
Da Vinci example, which suits ‘Only by expecting and demanding a matter of fact.
me best, is no longer so much A writer may only be really
appreciated and I do need to from ourselves that each sequence semantically correct and syntactically
respect the context of inter-
pretation which has changed
of our daily routine is viewed as a just, if actually inclined and able
to make, keep, see and enjoy the
radically in the last twenty years. literary opportunity may we envision beauty of a pragmatically sound
Creativity today is rather framed environment. Deterioration of
as a collective achievement than
a possibility for an aesthetically the conceptual environment we
a single talented individual’s acceptable writing life...’ live in may easily cause degrada-
enterprise. So yes, I have learnt tion of feelings, thinking and
to go with the flow for this part, Poetry (from Ancient Greek: sively, and word explosions we self-expression.
and what originates as my own poieo, make and do) is some- continuously experience today We need to make sure that we
work becomes easily shared and thing to be conveyed to anyone throughout the media and all may keep harmony and beauty
participated to whoever really ap- in action, which includes those kinds of channels have certainly for ourselves all the time, so
preciates it and needs it. who may want to continue be- had a powerful impact upon us. that we may replace some poetic
What would you say is the underlying ing in action by incorporating Emotions and feelings look like components when some mecha-
theme of your books? artistic added value into their something to be hidden in our nism gets stuck, or harmony is
My work is meant to illustrate professional lives, with the pur- heavily anaesthetised culture. just missing. According to the
how literary and poetic energy pose of raising the overall quality It is a fact that at times we are beauty of politics line, will any
may be saved and turned into of verbal activities, and related asked to become anaesthetised, written action be envisioned
high power harmony for full written results, i.e. reports and just to survive the massive attack as a pure act of poetry. Only by
beauty, creating the conditions documents we live with. of scattered paragraphs coming expecting and demanding from
for transferring poetry from In the wildly wired world (www) out of contexts, along with de- ourselves first and to others
traditional set ups into web sites we live in today, coming along fragmented verses. consequently that each sequence
and other places, which are usu- with major disconnections Such a self-defensive mecha- of our daily routine is viewed as
ally labelled as the very opposite among individuals and a whole nism may be as pervasive, as to a literary opportunity may we
of poetry. set of rigid standards meant determine the very end of poetry. envision a possibility for an aes-
Literary challenges are soon to to be turned into an unlimited Indeed a poetry event may, thetically acceptable writing life,
become page based opportuni- availability manual for how to based upon a presentation of meant to lead toward a peaceful
ties meant to introduce read- terminate poetry (http), poetic verses, be converted immediately collective reading future. But
ers to the pleasure and joy of attitudes may easily be reduced, into an assertive convention, and this is, of course, not an obvious
daily composition, throughout even fully extinguished, and be meant to be verses that are then process: a different vision is
a whole set of visual and spatial replaced with casual reading and numbered according to manda- needed to be able to see these
metaphors meant to trigger both serial writing habits at every- tory requirements in a sequence possibilities, which are not here

26 | Intellect Quarterly
intellect books
Q&A
“Books are humanity in print” – Barbara W. Tuchman
Horizon of the Unseen
Visual Reflections on
Spiritual Themes
Edited & Illustrated By Corinne Randall
yet and need be put in conceptual
existence throughout a thorough, FURTHER READING
concise and precise selection of The Art and Science
words, sentences, paragraphs of Documentation
and verses. Management
Actually poets of the present By Graziella Tonfoni with Lakhmi Jain
are provided with the real and £24.95, $49.95
unique opportunity to make a As information becomes This book is a compilation of quotes taken from the
whole series of literary combina- increasingly accessible world’s spiritual traditions interpreted visually by the
tions and reactions possible; to through newly-introduced editor, each page containing full-colour reproductions.
explore and explode beautiful technologies, the human mind
seeks a more comprehensive The diversity of themes covered result in a spectrum
concepts in pages, filling in
rapidly with ‘linearized’ beauty, interpretation of the world of approaches ranging from figurative to abstract or
in which we live. In order conceptual. By redefining the importance of spirituality
if they can only think of them-
to manage this information
selves this way. { overload, we must carefully
to visual art the book demonstrates this meditative
reconsider our attitude aspect of art. Horizon of the Unseen is therefore suitable
FURTHER READING
towards documentation. as a gift, as an aid for meditation or as a source of
While acknowledging the creative inspiration.
Writing as a Visual Art value of the standard
By Graziella Tonfoni abridged by guidebooks’ hard rules on
James Richardson | £14.95, $29.95 documentation management, The contents of the book are broken down into themes
Writing as a Visual Art offers Tonfoni advocates a new exploring such areas as: Spiritual Journey • Paradise •
a revolutionary approach approach that promotes
to writing by exploring a additional skills required for
Flight • Transcending Suffering • Peace • Happiness •
visual and multidimensional consistent decision-making, Unity • The Soul • Nothingness • Inner Visions
experience that is fun such as information sensitivity.
and common to people’s This book has been
£4.95 68pp. Paperback / ISBN 1-84150-913-2
experience. The result of conceived as a movie on
discoveries made during ten paper, and as such, can be
years of research in the fields considered a ‘documentary
of linguistics, cognitive science on documentation’. Readers
and artificial intelligence, are invited to analyse their
the author’s findings have own reading experience
been successfully applied in throughout a set of pages,
education programmes in Italy to become ‘interactive on
and the rest of Europe, as well paper’. Exercises are included
as in workshops in the United to help readers consolidate
States. Writing as a Visual Art new skills, through an
is for readers at all levels. innovative ‘learning by seeing’
Available now. experience. Available now.

To order a copy please send a cheque made out to Intellect Ltd.


with your name and address to the address below:
intellect PO Box 862, Bristol BS99 1DE, UK Tel: 0117 958 9910
Fax: 0117 958 9911 Email: orders@intellectbooks.com
Book Reviews
iQuote » “The difficulty of literature is not to write, but to write what you mean” – Robert Louis Stevenson

FILM STUDIES FILM STUDIES


European Identity Hollywood Utopia:
in Cinema Ecology in Contempo-
By Wendy Everett (ed.) rary American Cinema
Reviewed by Dean Bowman By Pat Brereton
Reviewed by Audrey Janvier
W hereas the European art
cinema of the 1960s was
national in character, funded by P at Brereton, a lecturer in film
and media studies at Dublin
cultural protectionist strategies put City University, tackles the unusual
in place by governments, the rise and intriguing subject of ecology
of globalisation and the formation Unfortunately the book has not in mainstream American films work crosses all the traditional
of the European Union have sig- been significantly updated since with a comprehensive study of boundaries by focusing on a broad
nificantly transformed the produc- its first edition was released in Hollywood blockbusters since the range of sociological and environ-
tion context, laying emphasis upon 1996, and consequently does not 1950s. Hollywood Utopia: Ecology in mental disciplines and by tying
pan-European funding strate- seem as progressive as it might Contemporary American Cinema offers aesthetics, ethics, feminism and
gies and co-productions. These have then. a cross-disciplinary approach to geography together to produce
co-productions, still viewed by The articles are however very a so far barely touched subject. this thoroughly researched book.
many as ‘Euro-puddings’, argu- insightful, and a few do con- Brereton carefully analyses the Not only does he break from the
ably now constitute the most cre- sider Europe in a more general dramatisation of the character’s narrow frameworks usually used
ative trend in European cinema sense, like Ian Aitkin’s excellent surroundings and their repre- in film studies, but he also crosses
and the site in which European discussion of European cinema sentations within space and time the boundaries of film genre,
identity is being formulated, within the political context of frames, thus shedding a different subject matters, narrative require-
explored and contested. globalisation. Other pieces light on films perceived until now ments and audience readings. He
as ‘feel-good’ movies. The link draws on historical context, eco-
‘Brereton carefully analyses the dramatisation between ecology and Hollywood, logical ideologies and utopia and
of the character’s surroundings and their although not obvious at first, the very notion of ‘green’, which
raises deep issues intertwined we learn was first formally coined
representations within space and time frames, with our vision of the planet. in the 1970s, to support his theory
thus shedding a different light on films perceived Brereton argues that American of eco-awareness in mainstream
until now as ‘feel-good’ movies.’ culture, often characterised by its American movies.
urbanism, and American films are Split into five chapters, the
European Identity in Cinema, successfully relate the national intimately connected with ecologi- book looks at all the aforemen-
edited by Wendy Everett, at- to the international such as cal concerns. tioned disciplines and uses their
tempts to approach cinema from Duncan Petrie’s analysis of a At first, Brereton’s task must individual and particular charac-
this pan-European perspective, trend in Scottish filmmaking have seemed daunting as interdis- teristics to develop the author’s
however it still relies upon a con- that draws upon the tradi- ciplinary studies can sometimes argument. In the introduction,
ception of Europe as made up of tions of European art cinema lose themselves in obscure realms Brereton painstakingly delimi-
a number of fragmented national to explore Scottish identity of conceptualism. However, his tates the concepts of ecology,
cinemas and a vision of the within a continental context. impressively fastidious research and ecologism, as well as the
auteur embedded in a national The exploration of new develop- in this unusual field provides concept of utopia versus ideology.
context. In his essay examining ments and interrelationships the reader with great insight. By Armed with this new knowledge,
a subversive trend in Spanish in contemporary European film looking at mainstream Hollywood the reader can comprehend the
cinema, Dominic Keown takes cannot be considered unless blockbusters, Brereton highlights emergence of an ecologically-
it for granted that Luis Buñuel the focus shifts from the parts undiscovered dimensions of Hol- based worldview of Hollywood.
is representatively Spanish, to the whole. European Identity in lywood film-making and breaks Brereton subsequently establishes
even though he was working Cinema demonstrates the begin- with more traditional approaches that Hollywood, contrary to what
in exile for most of his career. ning of this process. { to American cinema studies. His we are usually told, does care

28 | Intellect Quarterly
Book Reviews
iQuote » “Whoever is able to write a book and does not, it is as if they had lost a child” – Rabbi Nachman

about the planet. FILM STUDIES platforms to demonstrate his point.


The second chapter looks at The Spectacle of the And his point becomes clear as we
nature films and ecology with The grasp the powerful reach of modern
Yearling as the first indicator of Real: From Holly- media culture. We rely on visual
the new trend. His research takes wood to ‘Reality’ TV media more than ever, distorting
the reader back to the late 1940s our definition of the ‘real’ and what
with this film, once accused of
and Beyond is seemingly real.
‘ecological political correctness’, Edited by Geoff King The notion of reality, and the
as an early example of ecological Reviewed by Audrey Janvier string of conundrums attached to
concerns in Hollywood. It moves it, are not revolutionary themes
on to films made in the subse-
quent decades focusing on films
more obviously eco-orientated
A s an incredulous world watched
the Twin Towers collapse, the
unimaginable truth of the attack
work of members of staff at Brunel
University. The attacks gave the
and have been studied by many. It
is difficult not to think of Bau-
drillard when reading this book.
such as The Emerald Forest or Goril- brought our understanding of the project a context and somehow the King’s study reminds us of the
las in the Mist. ‘real’ to new levels. ‘It was just like background set-up it needed to ap- philosopher’s theories on Ameri-
Westerns and road movies, films in the movies’ was a phrase used peal to a wider readership. ca, on war or on people’s engage-
typically drawing on the notion and misused after the event, show- King divided this collection of ment in ‘simulations’. The idea
of immensity of nature and where ing the intricacy of our relationship essays into three distinctive parts; that America has created a world
landscapes play a prevalent role, with something that seems more each of them containing essays more real than reality for itself,
are studied in the third chapter. real than reality itself. The increas- united by a common subject matter or that the first Gulf war changed
Easy Riders is used to exemplify ing appeal of reality TV shows, – the spectacle of the ‘real’ – and our concept of reality in relation to
rebellious attitude against urban technological progress and the written by a broad selection of con- war, or the reality of war, are also
society as it clarifies the notions of omnipresence of the media have tributors. The first part deals with highly present in the book.
utopia and ideology. An eco-femi- blurred the boundaries between the issues of spectacle, ideology However, the section on reality
nist approach is also discussed ‘reality’ and the ‘real’ furthermore. and catastrophe, using the events of TV strikes an even more popular
with Thelma and Louise. While the cord. With the likes of Jade Goody,
fourth and fifth chapters focus on ‘It is difficult not to think of Baudrillard when Chantelle and other ‘wife swap’
thriller and science fiction films, reading this book. King’s study reminds us of the wannabe celebrities, television
highlighting the evermore power- is serving viewers plates full of
ful ecological concerns in contem-
philosopher’s theories on America, on war or on ‘hyper-reality’. Flick through the
porary science fiction films with people’s engagement in ‘simulations.’ channels on any given night and
mentions of recent blockbusters: you will be faced with more ‘real-
Men in Black, Blade Runner or Star Harrowing pictures of the effects September 11th as a focal point. The ity’ than you can probably bear to
Trek: First Contact. of global warming, war, famine second part revolves around reality watch. Nothing is off limits in the
Titanic, Twister, Safe, The and natural disaster blended with TV, and films are central to the third age of special effects and 24-hour
Medicine Man are among the films images from Hollywood blockbust- part. Even though issues necessarily CCTV. Spectacle no longer only
dissected. The full list would be ers, reality TV shows, special effects overlap, the book sustains a steady defines traditional forms of enter-
too long to print here but the and animated movies create a devas- pace thanks to an interesting mix- tainment like films, concerts and
broad selection of genres, films tating cocktail for our perception ture of current affairs and contem- theatre-going; spectacle is every-
and case studies, enables the of the ‘real’. It is no surprise then porary popular culture. where from Ronald McDonald to
author to make an undeniable that a book should investigate our Using the New York attacks as a wars, from Shrek to Big Brother.
point. After reading the book, the society’s symbols of the authentic, starting point, King puts readers King uses varied examples and
representation of eco-concerns and that is exactly what ‘The Spec- on an equal footing. Everybody has frameworks to illustrate the notion
in those instances can no longer tacle of the Real: Hollywood, Reality heard of it, everybody has seen im- of spectacle of the ‘real’. Despite the
be denied. All in all, 34 films TV and Beyond’ does. And beyond ages of the attacks and everybody, multitude of subjects approached,
are comprehensively analysed, is definitely the operative word. to a certain extent, has an opinion the book remains an absorbing read
classified and carefully organised King started this project before about it. Come to think of it, the as it goes beyond film studies. What
to give us this meticulous and the event of September 11th, 2001 same applies to his choice of reality the book needs now is a chapter on
thought-provoking work. { in an attempt to bring together the TV shows and popular films as our latest reality fix: the Internet. {

Intellect Quarterly | 29
Literature
iQuote » “Brevity and conciseness are the parents of correction” – Hosea Ballou

Micro Fiction
Micro Fiction Scarlatti Tilt Chef
is storytelling
“It’s very hard to live in a Seven whole months
effectively in 50 preparing French onion
studio apartment in San
words or less. Jose with a man who’s soup for drunken tourists
Successfully learning to play the on a round-the-world
cruise ship was driving
generating high violin.” That’s what she
him crazy when he realized
enough levels of told the police when she
he’d accidentally poured a
handed them the empty
intensity in so revolver.
3-litre bottle of turpentine
into a large saucepan, so he
few words. - Richard Brautigan
stirred in chopped onions
IQ recognises micro fiction’s and herbs before turning
broadening international profile,
not to mention the manner with
up the heat. - Liam Gallimore -Wells
which the medium continues to
challenge the way literature might
be perceived in the future.
Reproduced with permission
Last Laugh Train
of Canongate Books: Richard
Brautigan’s piece is probably the “NEVER LAUGH” was all Nobody noticed the groom
finest example of micro-fiction ever
written: lasting a murderously short
the paramedic could read waiting nervously as the
36 words in all! { across the young woman’s unborn fists of another
face until he lifted her man’s child tore into the
chin to check her pulse, bride-to-be’s womb lining,
revealing the continuing probably because her
words “AT ME LIKE THAT ice-white train was sliding

8 MICRO FICTION
ON THE WEB
AGAIN” razor-blade etched
haphazardly down her pale
blue neck.
in through the chapel door,
leaving a straight line of
blood-red carpet trailing
• www.sixbladesdeep.homestead.com
• www.ndsu.nodak.edu/instruct/cinichol/
- Liam Gallimore - Wells down the aisle in its wake.
CreativeWriting/microfiction.html - Liam Gallimore - Wells
• www.fictionfactor.com/guests/flashfiction.html

30 | Intellect Quarterly
New for 2007

Intellect Journals
Publishers of original thinking / www.intellectbooks.com

Studies in Australasian observe and participate in the years we have witnessed


Cinema development of professional an increased visibility for
3 Numbers/Volume 1 practice. As such, we aim to documentary film through
ISSN 1750-3175 include in each issue select conferences, the success of
Available in Print & On-line contributions from recognised general theatrical release of
practitioners in the field, who documentary films and the
Studies in Australasian may include writers, directors, re-emergence of scholarship
Cinema is a new international MDs, performers, coaches, in documentary film studies.
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devoted to cinema from the take the forms of extended home for the considered
Australian, New Zealand, and analyses of texts, performance approach to international
Pacific region. The Australia, and productions; interviews; documentary film history,
New Zealand, and Pacific experiential reflection, theory, criticism and practice
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Indigenous nations and international community of
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Studies in Russian and
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is a refereed journal which in Chinese cinemas. A diverse
considers areas of live Studies in Documentary Film range of films has emerged
performance that use 3 Numbers/Volume 1 from all parts of the Chinese-
vocal and instrumental ISSN 1750-3280 speaking world over the
music in conjunction with Available in Print & On-line last few years, with an ever
theatrical performance as increasing number of border-
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expressive language. In is the first refereed scholarly prominent among them.
addition to the scholarly journal devoted to the history, These exciting developments
contribution of academics, theory, criticism and practice provide abundant ground for
the journal will aim to of documentary film. In recent academic research.

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