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This chapter reviews Giorgio Agamben’s engagement with the cinematic Because cinema has its centre in the gesture and not in the image, it belongs. Modern Visual Arts April 21, G. Agamben – Notes on Gesture. From Giorgio Agamben’s book: Infancy and History – The Destruction of Experience I By the. Notes from Giorgio Agamben “Notes on Gesture”. (In the cinema, a society that has lost its gestures seeks to re-appropriate what it has lost.

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The Athlone Press, No Reading means to offer a slow space within which to retrace oursteps in the hopes of discovering individual and collective ways through the realms of language and interpretation. University College, ChichesterEngland.

V Politics is the sphere of pure means, which is to say of the absolute and total gesturality of human beings. His work has also inspired the Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben to propose a new theory of film that significantly departs from Deleuze.

Contact the Editor remove Caps before sending. If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian. It makes apparent the human state of being-in-medium and thereby opens up the ethical dimension for human beings. Levin, ‘Dismantling the Spectacle: The Work of Giorgio Agamben: If Deleuze breaks down the image into movement-images, Agamben will further break down the image into gestures.

To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: Simply put, we are suspicious of our own reading abilities, and the extent to which our readings are conversant with one another.

Montage is festure simply a repetition of the identical, because in repetition this dynamic potential of the image is returned to us. In this way these two opposing conditions, repetition and stoppage, both work to free the potential gilrgio the image and to return it to the movement of the gesture.


Dance exhibits the gesture as such, the medium of the gesture itself, or pure means without end. It is this new theory that I want to introduce.

Notes on Media and Biopolitics: ‘Notes on Gesture’

As Rene Vienet notes, the power of cinema for the Situationists was that it could lend itself ‘to dismantling processes of reification’. Levin’s article ‘Dismantling the Spectacle: No other image is promised, this is the ethics and politics of this scene.

The element of cinema is gesture and not image. On the other hand ‘stoppage’ in montage interrupts the stream of images. The importance of cinema is that it restores images to this dynamic movement. The other way, Debord’s way, is to exhibit the image and so to allow the appearance of ‘imagelessness’. Her concentration on the sugar cube is what allows her to shut out everything else, other people, and, in particular, the man who has just expressed his love to her.

The cube touches the giorglo of the coffee and in four and a half seconds the coffee soaks into the cube which is then dropped into the coffee. In his master class on this scene Kieslowski states that the use of close-ups such as this one is to convey the mental state of the film’s heroine.

Giorgio Agamben’s “Notes on Gesture”

The MIT Press, The power of cinema is that, in Agamben’s words, it ‘leads images back to the homeland of gestures’. This is what Debord does in his films, working on images he both repeats images to free the gestures fixed within them and stops images to allow us to think the image as such.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content. This site uses cookies. The essay ‘Notes on Gesture’ does not begin with the cinema but rather with what Agamben claims is the disappearance of gestures amongst the Western bourgeoisie agakben the end of the 19th century.


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Flat Notes from Giorgio Agamben “Notes on Gesture”

The gesture, as such, leaves us in the realm of mediality. Don’t have an account? Drawing on scanty historical evidence he argues that the scientific analysis of gesture agambem by Gilles de la Tourette indicates the breaking up of gesture into segments.

Agamben, ‘Difference and Repetition: The loss of gestures leads to a desperate attempt to recover or record what has been lost.

Benjamin Noys, ‘Gestural Cinema?: Cinema, especially silent cinema, is the primary and exemplary medium for trying to evoke gestures in the process of their loss. Classical, Early, and Medieval World History: What, then, would be a purely gestural cinema? Tourette is, of course, best known for naming Tourette’s syndrome, which Agamben describes as ‘an amazing proliferation of biorgio, spasmodic jerks, and mannerisms — a proliferation that cannot be defined in any way other than as a generalized catastrophe of the sphere of gestures’.

It is these two essays that I want to discuss to introduce Giorgio Agamben as a philosopher of film. Of course all this fits with an avant-garde gestuge modernist cinema, with which I giofgio have a great deal of sympathy. Why all this trouble for a sugar cube? No longer simply a beautiful aesthetic image, but also the exhibiting of the gesture as our medium, the pure means of our being-in-the-world.

Rene Vienet, quoted in Levin, ‘Dismantling the Spectacle’, p.