Film, media

Birgit Kellner kellner at IPC.HIROSHIMA-U.AC.JP
Mon Sep 29 16:16:17 UTC 1997

Lars Martin Fosse wrote:
> Dear Indology net,
> I would be grateful for bibliographic data on the topic
> "film, the media" in South Asia.
The "Enclyclopedia" by Ashish Rajadhyaksha and Paul Willemen, already
mentioned by somebody else, is undoubtedly the most comprehensive work,
not only, but also because of the sound theoretical background of both
writers (for Willemen's film theoretical essays, also relevant for his
studies on Indian cinema, see his excellent "Looks & Frictions - Essays
in Cultural Studies and Film Theory", London: British Film Institute,
1994). Willemen also co-edited a volume "Indian Cinema" with Behroze
Gandhy (London: British Film Institute 1980). I have found Rajadhyaksha
and Willemen particularly interesting, because they take popular cinema,
often dismissed as a trashy and unworthy form of film, seriously and
treat it as a relevant manifestation of Indian culture. The same goes
for the psychoanalyst Sudhir Kakar, who has written several short
articles on Indian cinema, scattered throughout various festival
catalogues, and who also draws on popular films for his generally very
readable studies on the Indian psyche.

In addition to that, I have found the volume "Les cinemas indiens" of
the film journal CinemAction (compiled by Aruna Vasudev and Philippe
Lenglet; Paris 1984: Editions du Cerf) to be quite useful. It contains a
number of articles on such diverse subjects as the psychoanalysis of
Indian cinema (Sudhir Kakar), music in popular Indian cinema (Sanjeev
Prakash), the star-system (B.K. Karanjia), women in Indian cinema (Aruna
Vasudev), the various regional cinemas etc. For visual pleasures, that
is, stunning film-stills, I would recommend the catalogue for a
retrospective of Indian cinema held at the Centre Georges Pompidou in
Paris (Jean-Louis Passek: Les stars du cinema indien, 1985).

For up-to-date information on recent films, there is the journal
Cinemaya (published in New Delhi), which covers Asian cinema in general,
or the slightly more off-beat Deep Focus (published in Bangalore). I
used to keep track of publications on Indian cinema, but have been out
of touch for the past three years, so if anybody knows of relevant
material published after 1994, please post information.

Birgit Kellner
Department for Indian Philosophy
Hiroshima University

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