Out of Site : Landscape and Cultural Reflexivity in New Hollywood Cinema 1969-1974

by Gustafsson, Henrik

Abstract (Summary)
This dissertation examines landscape as a concept for analysis and interpretation in film studies by considering the New Hollywood cinema in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Contextualized within the contested notion of nationhood at the time as well as the concern among filmmakers to probe the properties, practices and traditions of American cinema, this was also a period when landscape underwent widespread redefinition as a field of artistic and academic practice. From the outset an aesthetic and pictorial concept, landscape is understood as consisting of a number of interacting ideas and systems of representation which are addressed in terms of intermedial relations. Not something to be encountered or discovered and fixed on canvas or film, landscape involves an ongoing process of construction, appropriation and transformation.Departing from a discussion of the historical role landscape has played in cultural practices of self-representation and self-definition, this study is concerned with how it can be turned against itself and used as a point of departure for adversary and antagonistic views of national myths and media. The organization is roughly chronological, based around a series of reconsiderations of key films, mainly focusing on road movies and genre-revisionist work of the period. Rather than a repository of stable identities and values, each chapter shows how landscape can be advanced in a process of reflecting on attempts to impose meaning, order and linearity.Taken together, Out of Site argues that an engagement with the surfaces and depths of landscape enables new perspectives on the interrelations between the highbrow and the popular, aesthetics and ideology. Bringing attention to how story patterns and audience expectations are displaced, landscape is examined for the questions it raises regarding representational and narrative strategies, the formation of identity and memory, and our own habits of reading.
Bibliographical Information:


School:Stockholms universitet

School Location:Sweden

Source Type:Doctoral Dissertation

Keywords:HUMANITIES and RELIGION; Aesthetic subjects; Film; cultural identity; film analysis; film and nation; genre revisionism; intermediality; landscape in art; landscape in cinema; New Hollywood; new realism; nostalgia film; reflexivity; road movies; Cinema Studies; filmvetenskap


Date of Publication:01/01/2007

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