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Berlin ReplayedCinema and Urban Nostalgia in the Postwall Era$
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Brigitta B. Wagner

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780816691715

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816691715.001.0001

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Cinema, Archive, and the Interactive Map of Potsdamer Platz

(p.139) 3 Virtuality
Berlin Replayed

Brigitta B. Wagner

University of Minnesota Press

This chapter concentrates on Berlin’s propensity for staging encounters with urban virtuality, the multiple temporalities that the built city displays, particularly at the fraught site of Potsdamer Platz, once divided by the East-West border and before the Second World War, a major urban node. Examining the turning point of the late 1980s and early 1990s as a shift from purely cinematic explorations of place to new media ones, this chapter focuses on the Potsdamer Platz sequence of Wim Wenders’s Der Himmel über Berlin (1987) and Art + Com’s new media archival project, The Invisible Shape of Things Past (1995-present) and posits cartographic indexicality as a postwall strategy for countering and controlling urban nostalgia.

Keywords:   Urban virtuality, Potsdamer Platz, New media, Wim Wenders, The Invisible Shape of Things Past, Cartographic indexicality, Urban nostalgia

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