Disability Studies Program Brown Bag Seminar
Disability and Animacy in Eisenstein’s Cinema of the 1920s
Jose Alaniz, Director, Disability Studies, Associate Professor, Slavic Languages & Literatures
Abstract: In his late work of film theory, "Nonindifferent Nature," Sergei Eisenstein contends: "The organic unity of a work, as well as the sense of organic unity received from the work, arises when the law of the construction of this work corresponds to the laws of the structure of organic phenomena of nature." Drawing on examples which may include the director’s Strike! (1924); Battleship Potemkin (1925); October (1927); and The General Line (1929), the talk will place Eisenstein’s "organic aesthetics" of metamorphosis and “plasmaticness” in dialogue with recent intersectional work on crip/queer identity and animacies (Mel Y. Chen); disability and animality (Sunaura Taylor); and vibrant matter/posthumanism (Jane Bennett), all of which resonate with Eisenstein’s “ecstatic" early Soviet cinema of transformation.