CFP: "Cinema and Philosophy: Exploring the Intersections of Time, Identity, Ethics and Aesthetics"

Submission deadline: May 31, 2024

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Dear Colleagues,

We are pleased to invite you to contribute to a Special Issue entitled “Cinema and Philosophy: Exploring the Intersections of Time, Identity, Ethics and Aesthethics”.

Media and thinking are intimately related. Our memory, perception, and cognition are not just a given, being weightless, immaterial processes taking place purely mentally behind the walls of our skull, but also always already rest on a medial basis. As Nietzsche claimed, “Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts:” From here, we can derive the media-philosophical insight that a new medium makes us think differently. Media thus reveal themselves as the body or, better, the different bodies of thought. It is important to note these bodies are not retroactive to those thoughts that they materialize, just as the microscope is not retroactive to the discovery of bacteria: media are coextensive to the thoughts they allow. Media generate potentialities of thought, make things “thinkable” in different, medium-specific ways. Thinking thus does not take place within the confines of our skull only—thinking is non-centered, taking place on multiple levels and in feedback loops. Thus, media philosophy in general and film philosophy in particular are events, even praxes, rooted in the horizon of media themselves. They take place through and within the media in question.

This Special Issue attempts to bring film studies and philosophy into a productive dialogue without assigning the role of a dominant and all-encompassing referee to one of these disciplines. Rather, it is about relating the diverse entry points—the many colors of the spectrum—toward each other in a fertile manner in order to establish, ultimately, a media philosophy that puts the status, the role, and the function of the medium—here, film—into a new perspective. No longer are the representational techniques of the medium at the center of inquiry but rather its ability to “think” and to assume an active role in the process of thought, in finding alternative and differentiating point(s) of view (and thoughts). With such an approach, the medium film presents itself as possessing “agency,” and the dialogue between film and philosophy might be negotiated anew: film is not the illustration of external and ‘proper philosophical’ propositions—film can do thinking, film can do philosophy.

We are looking for essays that draw some light on the various connections between film and philosophy, in particular film as philosophy, as doing philosophy with other means, in another realm. How can film (as both movement-image and time-image) do a film-specific philosophy of time? What are the ethics (and/or aesthetics) proper to the medium film? What is a ‘filmic stance’ on questions of identity?

The fundamental question, however, is not whether film actually is (indistinguishable from) philosophy but how these two “disciplines” can get into a dialogue, a fruitful encounter—how far they entertain (or can enter into) some kinds of “elective affinities.”

The field that these prospective essays chart will— by necessity— be one of multiple logics, approaches, and perspectives that may even be incompatible to a certain extent. But, this is by no means something negative, but something operative, provocative, and ultimately useful. It is our hope that the reader will see for themself.

We request that, prior to submitting a manuscript, interested authors initially submit a proposed title and an abstract of 200–500 words summarizing their intended contribution. Please send it to the guest editors ([email protected][email protected]) or to the Philosophies editorial office ([email protected]). Abstracts will be reviewed by the guest editors for the purpose of ensuring proper fit within the scope of the Special Issue. Full manuscripts will undergo double-blind peer-review.

We look forward to receiving your contributions.

Prof. Dr. Bernd Herzogenrath
Guest Editor

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##cinema #philosophy #ethics #aesthetics #time #identity