[csaa-forum] Today: Professor Lesley Stern Public Lecture

Kirsten Stevens kirsten.e.stevens at gmail.com
Thu Nov 12 09:33:49 ACST 2015

**Apologies for cross-posting**

*Reminder - Public Lecture Tonight  *

You are warmly invited to attend a public lecture by internationally
renowned film scholar, Professor Lesley Stern:

*How Does (the) Cinema Feel About (the) Animal? *

*Date:* Today, Thursday 12th November

*Time: *5:45pm

*Place:* Monash Conference Centre, Level 7, 30 Collins St Melbourne

In the cinema all things are potentially equal: objects, people, animals.
All things come into being—come alive, acquire performative powers—through
cinematic magic. But even though the cinema is not exclusively human it has
surely been permeated by the spirit of human exceptionalism. Bad blood
enshrouds the inception of cinema, and its legacy is a haunting. When we
watch movies today we cannot avoid the presence of ghosts: slaughtered
elephants, galloping horses, sacrificial dogs, carnivorous bears—all hover
and materialize and enter our dreams. Much recent work in cinema studies
has turned attention to the place of the animal in the cinema and this
paper is enabled by such work. However, rather than thinking through
generalities my attention is caught, today, by moments of sensuous
intensity, by fragments and scenes from various films in which animals and
people and places are brought into strangely affective alliance. Reaching
from Buster Keaton’s *Go West *to Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s *Tropical
Malady*, the paper will speculate on how films (via modes of mimeticism,
empathetic projection, animistic gestures) might affect and change the way
we feel and identify across differences.

*Professor Lesley Stern* is the author of *Dead and Alive: The Body as
Cinematic Thing, The Smoking Book* and *The Scorsese Connection,* and
co-editor of *Falling For You: Essays on Cinema and Performance*. Her work
moves between a number of disciplinary locations and spans both theory and
production: although her reputation was established in the fields of film
theory and history, she is also known for her fictocritical writing. Her
work has been highly influential in the areas of film, performance,
photography, cultural history, postcolonialism, feminism and

Sponsored by the Film and Screen Studies Program, the School of Media, Film
and Journalism and the Faculty of Arts, Monash University
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