Cinema and Media Studies Program
Cinema and Media Studies is an interdisciplinary program at the University of Pennsylvania.
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PublicationBiographia Literaria and the Language of Science(1980-07-01) Corrigan, TimothyWhen Coleridge began dictating his Biographia Literaria in 1815, he was at the same time becoming actively involved in a medico-philosophical controversy that was then drawing the attention of many medical men and philosophers in England. The fundamental issue behind the quarrel, a materialistic versus a vitalist theory of nature, was one Coleridge had argued in one form or another throughout his career.1 Yet, the challenge of modern science specifically had never been so strong nor had it so vociferously demanded his attention as it did in the years from 1814 to 1819. Coleridge's response is well documented: the revised and enlarged version of The Friend, his Lay Sermons, the "Theory of Life," and a series of philosophical letters written between November 1816 and January 1818 all testify to Coleridge's growing concern with the challenge of science to his philosophy and to his need to validate his philosophical beliefs with scientific evidence. PublicationTeaching Film Auteurs(2012-01-01) Corrigan, TimothyIn the 1960s, the movies arguably made their most significant headway into the classrooms of the US colleges and universities first and foremost as the products of directors refigured as authors. Directors of the European new-wave cinema, like Jean-Luc Godard, Ingmar Bergman, and Michelangelo Antonioni, offered films whose aesthetic and textual challenges aligned them with modernist literature and art. They and their films became comparable to the canonical writers and texts taught in English and foreign language departments, from Bertolt Brecht's plays to the novels of William Faulkner and Marguerite Duras. The focus on auteurs at once facilitated and reduced how film has been taught, while also identifying critical and theoretical flashpoints that open film studies to other rich issues. PublicationComing to America(2007-01-01) Corrigan, TimothyForeign films achieved a high level of distinction and visibility in the United States this year, but the international movie scene has been long in development. The author traces the roots of this phenomenon and discusses the reasons for “the increasingly accented cinema seen in America.” Timothy Corrigan is a professor of English and director of cinema studies at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia and the author of several books, including most recently The Film Experience (2004), written with Patricia White. PublicationProducing Herzog: From a Body of Images(1986) Corrigan, TimothyEnigmas, flying doctors, ecstasies, fanatics, dwarfs, sermons, woodchucks, and phantoms: the perverse menagerie of images and abstractions that form the body of Werner Herzog's mesmerizing and exasperating films. Eating one's shoe: the raw emblem of a critical response to film-making, offered by a filmmaker who hopes to rescue the world with images, while claiming that "film is not the art of scholars, but of illiterates" (Greenberg et al., 1976, 174). Indeed, the last surprise should be that Herzog and his films, perhaps more than the films of any other contemporary director, suffer from the very excessiveness which distinguishes them and their histrionic director, distorted equally by extreme adulation and extreme condemnation. PublicationIntroduction: Leaving the Cinema(1991) Corrigan, TimothyHow have modern advertising techniques, the widespread use of VCRs, conglomerate takeovers of studios and film archives, cable TV, and media coverage of the Vietnam war changed the ways we watch movies? And how, in turn, have those different habits and patterns of viewing changed the ways in which films address their viewers? Drawing on a wide variety of American and European films and on many theoretical models, Timothy Corrigan investigates what he calls "a cinema without walls," taking a close look at particular films in order to see how we watch them differently in the post-Vietnam era. He examines cult audiences, narrative structure, genre films (road movies, in particular), and contemporary politics as they engage new models of film making and viewing. He thus provides a rare, serious attempt to deal with contemporary movies. Corrigan discusses filmmakers from a variety of backgrounds and cultures, including Martin Scorsese, Raoul Ruiz, Michael Cimino, Alexander Kluge, Francis Ford Coppola, Stephen Frears, and Wim Wenders. He offers detailed analyses of films such as Platoon; Full Metal Jacket; 9-1/2 Weeks; The Singing Detective; Choose Me; After Hours; Badlands; The King of Comedy; Paris, Texas; and My Beautiful Laundrette. Orchestrating this diversity, Corrigan provides a critical basis for making sense of contemporary film culture and its major achievements. PublicationColeridge, the Reader: Language in a Combustible Mind(1979) Corrigan, TimothyThat Coleridge's famous annotations often contain some of his most penetrating critical insights, and often the seminal fragments of his more polished criticism, indicates, moreover, that this workshop is--at least for Coleridge-- the workshop of his best literary criticism. As part of this workshop process, he suggests three distinguishable but not divisible steps (to use his own terms): reading, understanding, and an accurate and functional use of language. The matrix of the three is language; and, for Coleridge, not only how a reader uses language but what language he uses determines, to a great extent, the quality of his reading.More that one hundred and fifty years before the structuralists and Philippe Sollers' announcement that "the essential question today is no longer that of the writer and the work ... but that of writing and reading," Coleridge had noted and was attempting to describe the complicated relationship between reading, language, and the critical understanding. PublicationLiterature on Screen, A History: In the Gap(2007-09-01) Corrigan, TimothyPerhaps more than any other film practices, cinematic adaptations have drawn the attention, scorn, and admiration of movie viewers, historians, and scholars since 1895. Indeed, even before this origin of the movies - with the first public projections of films by Auguste and Louis Lumière in France and Max and Emil Skladanowsky in Germany - critical voices worried about how photography had already encroached on traditional aesthetic terrains and disciplines, recuperating and presumably demeaning pictorial or dramatic subjects by adapting them as mechanical reproductions. After 1895, however, film culture moved quickly to turn this cultural anxiety to its advantage, as filmmakers worked to attract audiences with well-known images from books now brought to life as Cinderella (1900), Gulliver's Travels (1902), and The Damnation of Faust (1904). The plethora of cinematic adaptations in recent decades and the flood of scholarship responding to these films - films like Bride and Prejudice, (2004), Bollywood's version of Jane Austen's novel, and scholarly projects like Robert Stam's back-to-back anthologies A Companion to Literature and Film (2005), Literature and Film: A Guide to the Theory and Practice of Film Adaptation (2005) and critical study Literature through Film: Realism, Magic and the Art of Adaptation (2005) - indicate that the practice of adaptation and the disciplinary debates about it remain as lively and pressing as ever. PublicationTransformations in Fassbinder's The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant(2001-01-01) Corrigan, TimothyThat Rainer Werner Fassbinder is at once the most prolific of the New German directors and the most controversial of the group has a significantly causal relationship: the very rate at which Fassbinder makes films, along with the rapid changes of subject and style, alone is enough to alienate and confound viewers who, at a more leisurely pace, might accustom themselves to perspectives and materials which are deceptively difficult to grasp. PublicationDer Unlesbare Film: Lektüren und Fehl-Lektüren Zeitgenössischer Filme(1993) Corrigan, Timothy PublicationThe Tension of Translation: Handke's The Left-Handed Woman(1986) Corrigan, TimothyThe debate about fiction-into-film will doubtless continue in as many directions and with as many conclusions as it has sustained since Vachel Lindsay abd Sergei Eisenstein addressed the question. Few filmmakers or films, however, focus that debate as explicitly and rigorously as Peter Handke and his much-acclaimed The Left-Handed Woman (Die linkshandige Frau, 1977). Hailed as "the rare thing, a genuinely poetic movie," The Left-Handed Woman is the second feature film by this dramatist, novelist, and poet whose reputation has been based primarily on his literary achievements but whose entrance into filmmaking brought immediate comparisons with the likes of Jean Cocteau and Andre Malraux. Handke's success with this film was not, though, unprepared. Together with Wim Wenders, he made 3 American LPs (3amerikanische LPs, 1969). In 1970 he directed the TV-film The Chronicle of Current Events (Die Chronik der laufenden Ereignisse), a self-styled allegory about two years of recent West German history. The next year he provided the novel and the script for Wenders's film version of The Goalie's Anxiety at the Penalty Kick (Die Angst des Tormanns beim Elf-meter, 1972). In 1974 he collaborated with Wenders once again, this time on Wrong Move (Falsche Bewegung), a loose adaptation of Goethe's classical Bildungsroman, Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship (Wilhelm Meisters Lehrjahre).