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Matters Of Gravity

Author: Scott Bukatman
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 0822384892
Size: 53.51 MB
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The headlong rush, the rapid montage, the soaring superhero, the plunging roller coaster—Matters of Gravity focuses on the experience of technological spectacle in American popular culture over the past century. In these essays, leading media and cultural theorist Scott Bukatman reveals how popular culture tames the threats posed by technology and urban modernity by immersing people in delirious kinetic environments like those traversed by Plastic Man, Superman, and the careening astronauts of 2001: A Space Odyssey and The Right Stuff. He argues that as advanced technologies have proliferated, popular culture has turned the attendant fear of instability into the thrill of topsy-turvydom, often by presenting images and experiences of weightless escape from controlled space. Considering theme parks, cyberspace, cinematic special effects, superhero comics, and musical films, Matters of Gravity highlights phenomena that make technology spectacular, permit unfettered flights of fantasy, and free us momentarily from the weight of gravity and history, of past and present. Bukatman delves into the dynamic ways pop culture imagines that apotheosis of modernity: the urban metropolis. He points to two genres, musical films and superhero comics, that turn the city into a unique site of transformative power. Leaping in single bounds from lively descriptions to sharp theoretical insights, Matters of Gravity is a deft, exhilarating celebration of the liberatory effects of popular culture.

Comics And The City

Author: Jörn Ahrens
Publisher: A&C Black
ISBN: 0826440193
Size: 13.92 MB
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Includes international essays on possibly the most important aspect of the aesthetics and narratives of comics - urban topography and environment.

Hellboy S World

Author: Scott Bukatman
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520288041
Size: 28.32 MB
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"Hellboy, Mike Mignola's famed comic book demon hunter, wanders through a haunting and horrific world steeped in the history of weird fictions and wide-ranging folklores. Hellboy's World shows how our engagement with Hellboy is also a highly aestheticized encounter with the medium of comics and the materiality of the book. Scott Bukatman's dynamic study explores how comics produce a heightened 'adventure of reading' in which syntheses of image and word, image sequences, and serial narratives create compelling worlds for the reader's imagination to inhabit. In Mignola's work, the imaginative space that exists on the page and within the book becomes a self-aware meditation upon the imaginative space of page and book. To understand the mechanics of creating a world on the page, Bukatman draws upon other media--including children's books, sculpture, pulp fiction, cinema, graphic design, painting, and illuminated manuscripts. Hellboy's World delves into shared fictional universes and occult detection, the riotous colors of comics that elude rationality and control, horror and the evocation of the sublime, and the place of abstraction in Mignola's art to demonstrate the pleasurable and multiple complexities of the reader's experience. Monsters populate the world of Hellboy comics, but Hellboy's World argues that comics are themselves little monsters, unruly sites of sensory and cognitive pleasures that exist, happily, on the margins. The book is not only a treat for Hellboy fans but will entice anyone interested in the medium of comics and the art of reading"--Provided by publisher.

The Contemporary Comic Book Superhero

Author: Angela Ndalianis
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1135213941
Size: 54.50 MB
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Over the last several decades, comic book superheroes have multiplied and, in the process, become more complicated. In this cutting edge anthology an international roster of contributors offer original research and writing on the contemporary comic book superhero, with occasional journeys into the film and television variation. As superheroes and their stories have grown with the audiences that consume them, their formulas, conventions, and narrative worlds have altered to follow suit, injecting new, unpredictable and more challenging characterizations that engage ravenous readers who increasingly demand more.

The Poetics Of Slumberland

Author: Scott Bukatman
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520265718
Size: 43.68 MB
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"In The Poetics of Slumberland, Scott Bukatman celebrates play, plasmatic possibility, and the life of images in cartoons, comics, and cinema. Bukatman begins with Winsor McCay's Little Nemo in Slumberland to explore how and why the emerging media of comics and cartoons brilliantly captured a playful, rebellious energy. Slumberland is more than a marvelous world for Nemo and its other citizens; it is an aesthetic space defined by the artist's innovations. The book broadens to consider similar 'animated' behaviors in seemingly disparate media--films about Jackson Pollock, Pablo Picasso, and Vincent van Gogh; the musical My Fair Lady and the story of Frankenstein; the slapstick comedies of Jerry Lewis; and contemporary comic superheroes--drawing them all together as purveyors of embodied utopias of disorder."--Page 4 of cover.

Digital Storytelling

Author: Shilo T. McClean
Publisher: MIT Press
ISBN: 0262304198
Size: 41.89 MB
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Computer-generated effects are often blamed for bad Hollywood movies. Yet when a critic complains that "technology swamps storytelling" (in a review of Van Helsing, calling it "an example of everything that is wrong with Hollywood computer-generated effects movies"), it says more about the weakness of the story than the strength of the technology. In Digital Storytelling, Shilo McClean shows how digital visual effects can be a tool of storytelling in film, adding narrative power as do sound, color, and "experimental" camera angles -- other innovative film technologies that were once criticized for being distractions from the story. It is time, she says, to rethink the function of digital visual effects.Effects artists say -- contrary to the critics -- that effects always derive from story. Digital effects are a part of production, not post-production; they are becoming part of the story development process. Digital Storytelling is grounded in filmmaking, the scriptwriting process in particular. McClean considers crucial questions about digital visual effects -- whether they undermine classical storytelling structure, if they always call attention to themselves, whether their use is limited to certain genres -- and looks at contemporary films (including a chapter-long analysis of Steven Spielberg's use of computer-generated effects) and contemporary film theory to find the answers. McClean argues that to consider digital visual effects as simply contributing the "wow" factor underestimates them. They are, she writes, the legitimate inheritors of film storycraft.

Terminal Identity

Author: Scott Bukatman
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 9780822313403
Size: 19.65 MB
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Scott Bukatman's Terminal Identity—referring to both the site of the termination of the conventional "subject" and the birth of a new subjectivity constructed at the computer terminal or television screen--puts to rest any lingering doubts of the significance of science fiction in contemporary cultural studies. Demonstrating a comprehensive knowledge, both of the history of science fiction narrative from its earliest origins, and of cultural theory and philosophy, Bukatman redefines the nature of human identity in the Information Age. Drawing on a wide range of contemporary theories of the postmodern—including Fredric Jameson, Donna Haraway, and Jean Baudrillard—Bukatman begins with the proposition that Western culture is suffering a crisis brought on by advanced electronic technologies. Then in a series of chapters richly supported by analyses of literary texts, visual arts, film, video, television, comics, computer games, and graphics, Bukatman takes the reader on an odyssey that traces the postmodern subject from its current crisis, through its close encounters with technology, and finally to new self-recognition. This new "virtual subject," as Bukatman defines it, situates the human and the technological as coexistent, codependent, and mutally defining. Synthesizing the most provocative theories of postmodern culture with a truly encyclopedic treatment of the relevant media, this volume sets a new standard in the study of science fiction—a category that itself may be redefined in light of this work. Bukatman not only offers the most detailed map to date of the intellectual terrain of postmodern technology studies—he arrives at new frontiers, providing a propitious launching point for further inquiries into the relationship of electronic technology and culture.

Death Of Classical Cinema The

Author: Joe McElhaney
Publisher: SUNY Press
ISBN: 0791481115
Size: 25.89 MB
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A study of three classical filmmakers and the films they made at the cusp of the modernist movement in cinema.

A Small World

Author: Davin Heckman
Publisher: Duke University Press
ISBN: 0822388847
Size: 41.78 MB
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Conceived in the 1960s, Walt Disney’s original plans for his Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow (EPCOT) outlined a utopian laboratory for domestic technology, where families would live, work, and play in an integrated environment. Like many of his contemporaries, Disney imagined homes that would attend to their inhabitants’ every need, and he regarded the home as a site of unending technological progress. This fixation on “space-age” technology, with its promise of domestic bliss, marked an important mid-twentieth-century shift in understandings of the American home. In A Small World, Davin Heckman considers how domestic technologies that free people to enjoy leisure time in the home have come to be understood as necessary parts of everyday life. Heckman’s narrative stretches from the early-twentieth-century introduction into the home of electric appliances and industrial time-management techniques, through the postwar advent of television and the space-age “house of tomorrow,” to the contemporary automated, networked “smart home.” He considers all these developments in relation to lifestyle and consumer narratives. Building on the tension between agency and control within the walls of homes designed to anticipate and fulfill desires, Heckman engages debates about lifestyle, posthumanism, and rights under the destabilizing influences of consumer technologies, and he considers the utopian and dystopian potential of new media forms. Heckman argues that the achievement of an environment completely attuned to its inhabitants’ specific wants and needs—what he calls the “Perfect Day”—institutionalizes everyday life as the ultimate consumer practice.

The Cinema Effect

Author: Sean Cubitt
Publisher: MIT Press (MA)
ISBN: 9780262532778
Size: 73.69 MB
Format: PDF
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A history of images in motion that explores the"special effect" of cinema.