Not only puzzled but also disgusted – this is how German author Heinrich von Kleist writes in a letter (published as “Essay on the sure way of finding happiness” (orig. “Aufsatz den sicheren Weg […]
Several days ago I wrote about Béla Balász’ thoughts on silent movies and promised to discuss them. That they discovered non-verbal communication (not to be mistaken with sign language) as expressing […]
Silent film guides human beings towards a visual culture and gives them a new common face. This happens after printing made the human face unreadable, because facial expression and gesticulation got negligible within a verbal culture. Okay, but what does this assumption of Béla Balázs mean?
Now, of what use is a fable? A fable that set words aside and altogether surrenders itself to pictures.
One could appreciate Derrida and learn from the “Hof-Konzert” that acting morally means to act for the sake of the other. All of this can be discussed, tried out, and experienced in the light of hospitality.
I already almost live for six years in Vienna. But one thing never caught my eye and mind: the access to the main entrance of the Austrian Parliament Building doesn’t take place head on. It’s different with the German Reichtstag in Berlin. Suddenly I asked myself whether this architectural detail voices anything about the understanding of democracy in those countries.
In “More of The World Viewed” of his The World Viewed Stanley Cavell claims that movies provide the myth of lived democracy against the myth of ruled democracy. But they cannot provide it by showing democracy at work, since that would made it a mere utopia. He explains this by referring to the 30ies’ comedies.
Cavell heightens this statements about movie stars into a very surprising, worth of thinking about and challenging one. He writes: The stars “realized the myth of singularity” (p.35), wherefore “movies have an inherent tendency toward the democratic, or anyway the idea of human equality” (p. 34). – What are his reasons to state such a daring thesis?