In The Geopolitical Aesthetic (1992), Fredric Jameson followed up on his multimedia study Postmodernism: The Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism (1991) by zooming in on film's propensities to “think a system so vast that it cannot be encompassed by the natural and historically developed categories of perception with which human beings normally orient themselves” (Jameson, Geopolitical 2). These propensities derive not only from film's obvious emphasis on the visual but also from its tendency toward self-consciousness about mediation and medium history, its collective conditions of production, and, most importantly, the inherently spatial quality of film—its reliance on the profilmic event, its projection of exteriority, its integral set design. Where the question is how to think space—the integrated world system of global capitalism—cinema is thus a uniquely useful medium, a use-value intensified in those particular films expressly committed to the project...
anna kornbluh is associate professor and associate head of English at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She is the author of Realizing Capital (2014) and is currently completing a manuscript, “The Order of Forms: Realism, Formalism, and Social Space.”
Anna Kornbluh; Realism's Empire. Novel 1 May 2017; 50 (1): 150–155. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00295132-3854511
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