Volume 5, Issue 2 (2016)

This issue of Cinesthesia explores recent American cinema and television. Together, our authors suggest that films made in America inevitably comment on America. Even if the films and shows examined in this issue concern other times, other nations, and other worlds, or even if they eschew social realism for fantasy or horror, these films and shows interrogate the same big question: what does it mean to act and think like an “American;” to subscribe, knowingly or unknowingly, to American ideologies or systems of belief?

To make sense of these films and their commentary on American life, our authors pull from a diverse array of theoretical and critical schools: the ideological criticism of Commoli and Narboni; the neoformalism of Bordwell and Thompson; the auteur theory of Bazin, Truffaut, and Sarris, as well as Bazin’s assessment of the “genius” of the Hollywood system; even Immanuel Kant’s musings on cosmopolitical unity. Ultimately, our authors take as their subject American ideology as much as American cinema – indeed, we learn that the two cannot be separated.

This issue's cover art is part of Jess Weal's Repurposed series. Click here for more of Jess's work.


Guest Editors
Joseph Hogan
Travis Wheeler