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Poetry and reason: means and meanings of the moving image

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posted on 24.05.2021, 18:29 by Iona Pelovska
Poetry and Reason departs from the question of cinema as industrial technology and as artistic language. The prosthetic relationship of industrial technologies to the body, unlike the contingency of traditional art technologies on the body, problematizes the question of cinema as art. Cinema's capacity to render thought-like environments allows its trans-mediumatic abstraction. This extends its questioning beyond the technologically cinematic, into the pre-technological moving image that animates perception, thought and dream. In scanning the field that makes cinema possible, this work questions the possibilities cinema opens as a way of knowing and assembling realities. The interpolation of language, thought and embodiment reveals a view of language as mediumatic, and of cinema as a linguistic medium that can simulate a cognitively faithful dream (the original disembodied moving image) as sensory experience. Thus cinema re-enacts a pre-technological environment while advancing the language of technology embedded in the cinematic machine. The libidinal ways solar and chthonic energies, the symbolic and the physical, interpolate in mytho-poetic thought, art and science culminate in the ways these energies unfold in the experience of cinema and illuminate human hybridization, from ancient anthropo-bestiality to the techno-human condition. Poetry and reason, as the two ways of language, outline an epistemology that foregrounds the primacy of poetry in symbolic being. This work aims to resolve tensions between the symbolic and the material both theoretically and methodologically, proposing an integration of rational and poetic (artistic) techniques. The methodological intervention brings divergent approaches into tensional dynamic that sculpts a mobile structure, necessarily open-ended and imperfect. Theoretically, it delves into the movements of poetry and reason as ways to meaning, investigating their destination in cinema. The vocabulary of reason prompts cinema to advance a technological intent to colonize reality while poetic language destabilizes that movement. Reason and poetry as the two ways of language are thus actualized in the ways cinematic language interpolates mental and sensory experience.



Doctor of Philosophy


Communication and Culture

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type