Pub Date2013
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Directory of World Cinema: Belgium

Marcelline Block, Jeremi Szaniawski
Intellect Books

Is there such a thing as a single Belgian cinema? A country that is culturally and linguistically divided between the Dutch-speaking Flanders and the francophone Brussels and Wallonia, Belgium is a contested site, and its fragile unity continues to be challenged by separatists. Nevertheless, the filmic output of this divided country merits serious attention, and Directory of World Cinema: Belgium is the comprehensive guides it richly deserves.

Featuring contributions from leading Belgian and international film scholars, the essays here examine the work and careers of the greatest names of Belgian cinema, from its pioneers to its modern age, while also investigating its lesser known productions and intersections with Belgian art, history, literature, and culture, as well as the legacies of social documentary, surrealism, and magical realism.

Small but mighty, Belgium has for the last decade produced an average of forty feature films a year, an extraordinary accomplishment for a country of just ten million. Directory of World Cinema: Belgium will find grateful readers in anyone interested in Belgian culture and identity.

About the Author

Marcelline Block (BA, Harvard; MA, Princeton; PhD candidate, Princeton) is Lecturer in History at Princeton. She edited Situating the Feminist Gaze and Spectatorship in Postwar Cinema (Cambridge Scholars, 2008; 2010) and World Film Locations: Paris (Intellect, 2011); co-edited “Collaboration,” a special issue of Critical Matrix (vol. 18, 2009), and co-edited Gender Scripts in Medicine and Narrative (Cambridge Scholars, 2010). She contributed chapters to anthologies including The Many Ways We Talk about Death in Contemporary Society: Interdisciplinary Studies in Portrayal and Classification (2009) and Vendetta: Essays on Honor and Revenge (2010). Her articles have appeared in the journals Excavatio, vol. XXII: Realism and Naturalism in Film Studies (2007); The Harvard French Review (2007), and Women in French Studies (2009, 2010). Her writing has been published in French in Vingtième Siècle: revue d’histoire (vol. 96, 2007) and in Russian in Русское арт-зарубежье: Вторая половина ХХ века – начало ХХI века/Russian Art Beyond Borders: Late 20th Century-Early 21st Century (2010).

Jeremi Szaniawski is a Belgian graduate student at Yale University in the joint Slavic and Film Studies programme. Fields of interest on which he has published in English include the films of Ingmar Bergman, Quentin Tarantino, Andre Bazin, modernism, postmodernism, postfeminism and what he has branded ‘trans’modernism in contemporary cinema. He has also taught classes on Horror cinema at Yale. His dissertation topic centers on the feature films of Alexander Sokurov, with whom he conducted an interview published in Critical Inquiry. In 2010, he also translated Thomas Elsaesser’s and Malte Hagener’s Film Theory: an Introduction Through the Senses into French, for the Presses Universitaires de Rennes.

During his much coveted spare time, Jeremi is a vehemently amateurish, mildly independent video ‘artist.’