Special issue of Asian Cinema 27.2 now available!

Intellect is thrilled to announce that the special issue of Asian Cinema  27. 2 is now available. This special issue focuses on Iranian cinema, with a collection of essays investigating more deeply the representation of eroticism in Iranian film: the creative strategies involved in both its extra-diegetic form and its internal logic. 


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List of articles (partial list):


Utopia and censorship: Iranian cinema at the crossroads of love, sex and tradition

Authors: Amir Ganjavie

Page Start: 113


When faced with strict censorship and social and moral barriers, what methods have Iranian directors developed in order to address love, desire and passion? In what ways do these methods emancipate or emasculate Iranian artists in their quest to express love and eroticism? This article attempts to answer these questions, arguing that it makes little sense to say that any authoritative system with a system of hegemony could prevent its citizens from expressing this impulse in their works since the sexual instinct is life’s drive and only at the moment of death can humans deny its existence. What is essential, radical and utopian is to read the meaning of eroticism in Iranian cinema through the specific culture in which the drive has been developed and shaped.


When the sun goes down: Sex, desire and cinema in 1970s Tehran

Authors: Blake Atwood

Page start: 127


The 1970s witnessed an explosion of sex in Iranian cinema, and the representation of bodies and desires became more explicit than ever. The rise of on-screen sex flew in the face of successive guidelines released by the Ministry of Cultural Affairs (MCA) in 1966 and 1972, which sought to limit the production and exhibition of films that featured sexual relations. This article explores this paradox and begins to trace the contours of a history of cinematic sex in mid-century Iran by examining film industry advertising schemes, especially film posters, alongside three sex-driven films: Mansur Purmand’s Shir tu shir (Chaos) (1972), Feraidun Goleh’s Zir-e pust-e shab (Under the Skin of the Night) (1974), and Parviz Sayyad’s Dar emtedād-e shab (Into the Night) (1978). 


Real men: Representations of masculinity in Iranian cinema

Authors: Christopher Gow

Page Start: 165


The article examines different representations of masculinity in Iranian cinema, using Shahin Gerami’s essay ‘Mullahs, martyrs, and men: Conceptualizing masculinity in the Islamic Republic of Iran’ as the basis for its analysis. The article looks at examples of post-revolutionary Iranian cinema – in particular Rakhshan Bani-Etemad’s Nargess (1992) and Kamal Tabrizi’s The Lizard (2002) – featuring male characters that can be considered in light of the masculine archetypes that Gerami identifies. This analysis is prefaced by a brief consideration of representations of masculinity in post-revolutionary Iranian cinema, in particular Masud Kimiai’s Dash Akol (1971) as an example of the luti or ‘tough guy’ genre. By considering these different representations of masculinity, the article aims to address the gender imbalance in recent studies of Iranian cinema, most of which focus predominantly or indeed exclusively on the representation of women, as well as challenge stereotypes of Iranian and/or Middle Eastern masculinity more generally.


A Self that hides in Others: The cosmopolitan vision of Abbas Kiarostami

Authors: Nojang Khatami

Page Start: 189


Given his immense influence on cinema in his homeland, much has been said about Abbas Kiarostami as a quintessentially Iranian director and artist. Yet his most recent films – Shirin (2008), Certified Copy (2010) and Like Someone in Love (2012) – offer interesting terrain for exploring how he deals with love and empathy beyond borders. This article examines these recent films to argue that Kiarostami’s growing cosmopolitan vision encompasses one way of going beyond the notion of the gaze as a mode of objectification and domination. Relying heavily on the power of the image, his is an aesthetic that invites care and empowerment, transcending violence and objectification by teaching the audience to look in new ways.

Posted by Katy Dalli at 12:24 (0) comments
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