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Brutal VisionThe Neorealist Body in Postwar Italian Cinema$
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Karl Schoonover

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780816675548

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816675548.001.0001

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the North Atlantic Ballyhoo of Liberal Humanism

the North Atlantic Ballyhoo of Liberal Humanism

Chapter:
(p.69) 2 the North Atlantic Ballyhoo of Liberal Humanism
Source:
Brutal Vision
Author(s):

Karl Schoonover

Publisher:
University of Minnesota Press
DOI:10.5749/minnesota/9780816675548.003.0002

This chapter analyzes how a period’s dominant discourses imagine reception, anticipate engagement, and in so doing, condition the socio-political remunerations of filmgoing. It examines the archive of neorealism’s U.S. promotion and criticism to see how it articulates a compelling vision of a mid-twentieth-century American spectator. It suggests that the neorealist image actually lies precisely at the intersection of sensational rawness and world understanding, and that the humanist spectatorial mode it encourages tracks between the supposedly antithetical poles of affective engagement and reasoned ethical judgment. It also highlights a central feature of internationalism, which is the proxying of national sovereignty, and how cinema comes to address two of the challenges that this alteration of sovereignty poses to nationalist politics.

Keywords:   filmgoing, neorealism, neorealist image, humanist spectatorial mode, internationalism, national sovereignty, cinema, nationalist politics

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