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Thomsen, Morten Feldtfos
Publications (2 of 2) Show all publications
Thomsen, M. F. (2019). 'You start to change when I get in. The Babadook growing right under your skin': Monstrous intermediality in Jennifer Kent's The Babadook. Horror studies, 10(1), 61-72
Open this publication in new window or tab >>'You start to change when I get in. The Babadook growing right under your skin': Monstrous intermediality in Jennifer Kent's The Babadook
2019 (English)In: Horror studies, ISSN 2040-3275, Vol. 10, no 1, p. 61-72Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article investigates intermedial strategies in Jennifer Kent's 2014 film The Babadook, arguing that such strategies are a key feature of its aesthetics of horror. Employing concepts from the field of Intermedial Studies, it traces the presence in Kent's film of bookishness, that is, different intermedial strategies that serve to mimic the formal properties of books in general and pop-up books in particular. It also demonstrates how the film's many references to early silent film, and in particular the trick films of French cinematic pioneer, Georges Melies, function as a self-reflexive exploration of the form and function of the bookishness evident in the film. Based on this analysis, this article then coins the term of 'monstrous intermediality' to describe intermedial strategies that unsettle but do not subvert the processes of integration and immersion characteristic of narrative cinema, thereby destabilizing the distinction between screen and viewer.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Intellect, 2019
Keywords
The Babadook, Jennifer Kent, intermediality, bookishness, cinema of attractions, Melies
National Category
Cultural Studies
Research subject
Cultural studies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-72411 (URN)10.1386/host.10.1.61_1 (DOI)000468798200005 ()
Available from: 2019-06-11 Created: 2019-06-11 Last updated: 2019-12-09Bibliographically approved
Thomsen, M. F. (2016). Scenes of Writing, Scenes of Looking: Don DeLillo, Claus Beck-Nielsen, and the Politics of the Novel. (Doctoral dissertation). Karlstad: Karlstads universitet
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Scenes of Writing, Scenes of Looking: Don DeLillo, Claus Beck-Nielsen, and the Politics of the Novel
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Alternative title[sv]
Skriftens scen, blickens scen : Don DeLillo, Claus Beck-Nielsen, och romanens politik
Abstract [en]

Cries of the death of the novel and even of literature in general have become cultural commonplaces. In an age seemingly dominated by digital spectacle, many seem to think that traditional print literature has become an almost obsolete cultural practice, bereft of any critical social and political relevance. Combining theories and concepts from such diverse fields as Comparative Literature, Intermedial Studies and Visual Culture Studies, Morten Feldtfos Thomsen argues for the continued cultural relevance of the print novel not only as a form of aesthetic expression and experience, but also as a form of political intervention. Through readings of novels by American author Don DeLillo, and Danish writer and avant-garde artist Claus Beck-Nielsen, he argues that the print novel can engage in a critical and potentially subversive redistribution of what can be seen, said and generally perceived in contemporary society. Following French philosopher Jacques Rancière’s writings on perception as the ground of both aesthetics and politics, as well as W.J.T. Mitchell’s theories on multimodality and mixed media, Scenes of Writing, Scenes of Looking investigates the formal and thematic manifestation in DeLillo’s and Beck-Nielsen’s novels of an imagetext discourse, i.e. an intermingling of images and words, looking and writing. Such strategies insistently interrogate the relationship of mediation and perception to one another as well as the ideological underpinnings thereof. In doing so, the novels participate in the construction and possible disruption of the perceptual field of experience that underpins social order and political engagement. More than merely a self-absorbed play with media and modalities, DeLillo’s and Beck-Nielsen’s insistent mixing of words and images, the verbal and the visual, constitutes a deeply political interrogation of the conditions of possibility that govern our perceptions of the world and our mode of participation and interaction with it.  

Abstract [en]

Cries of the death of the novel and even of literature in general have become cultural commonplaces. In an age seemingly dominated by digital spectacle, many seem to think that traditional print literature has become an almost obsolete cultural practice, bereft of any social and political relevance. In Scenes of Writing, Scenes of Looking, however, Morten Feldtfos Thomsen argues for the continued relevance of the print novel not only as a form of aesthetic expression and experience, but also as a form of political intervention. Through readings of novels by American author Don DeLillo, and Danish writer and avant-garde artist Claus Beck-Nielsen, he argues that the print novel can engage in a critical and potentially subversive redistribution of what can be seen, said and generally perceived in contemporary society. Central in this respect is the formal and thematic manifestation in their novels of an imagetext discourse, i.e. an intermingling of words and images, writing and looking, through which they interrogate and negotiate the relation of mediation, technology and perception to one another. In doing so, the novels participate actively in the construction and disruption of the perceptual field of experience that underpins social order and political engagement.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Karlstad: Karlstads universitet, 2016. p. 345
Series
Karlstad University Studies, ISSN 1403-8099 ; 2016:32
Keywords
DeLillo, Beck-Nielsen, literature, aesthetics, politics, technology, imagetext, W.J.T. Mitchell, print novel, visual culture, media, intermediality, Rancière, multimodality, materiality, image, vision
National Category
General Literature Studies
Research subject
Comparative Literature
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-42070 (URN)978-91-7063-713-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2016-09-01, 12A138, Universitetsgatan 2, Karlstad, 13:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2016-08-16 Created: 2016-05-20 Last updated: 2017-08-08Bibliographically approved
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