Monday, July 22, 2013

The Power of Movies-How Screen and Mind Interact-by Colin McGinn

My philosophy book group is discussing this book Sept 8th. I suggest we discuss the ones with **.

Here are some of the quotes I would like to discuss:

**Loc 122  Art, in other words, is transformative .....What moves us at the movie theater is the power of the imagination

*Page 27 of 212 (loc 361 of 2585)  ...gazing into flames is no doubt an ancient pastime... We can see strange and fascinating patterns... ...perennial human urge to leave the home and assemble in the fire-lit dark with like-minded strangers to listen to stories.

*Pg 37 loc 478 ...we do not thereby look into the photograph ...We look at the photograph ... The movie image is seen but not looked at...

*Loc 482 Photographs are objects of visual attention; movies exist to direct attention elsewhere...

**Pg 51 loc 661 In the close up we can see to the bottom of the soul by means of such tiny movements of facial muscles which even the most observant partner would never perceive. ...The close up exploits what psychologists call mind reading. ...Without the close up movies would lack much of their psychological power, their peculiar dramatic punch.

**Pg 55 loc 702 Three factors feed the voyeuristic appetite in the cinema, the close up, looking into, and the psychological foregrounding

*Pg 73 loc 934 here is Roland Barthes on the face of Greta Garbo: Garbo offered to one's gaze a sort of Platonic IDEA of the human creature ...the name given to her, the Divine ...

**Page 78 loc 986 If spiritual bodies, analogous to angels, confront us on the screen, then is watching a movie anything like a religious experience?

*Page 82 loc 1038. Polytheistic and pagan full of violence and conflict, sexual passion and hunger for power, the movies approximate more closely the religion of our wilder forebears

**page 94 loc 1190 The answer, I suggest, is that the actor pretends that someone else's mind is in her body

Pg 95 loc 1200 ...metaphysical assumptions about mind and body... 

Pg 98 loc 1239 is that the screen is consciousness externalized. 

Pg 100 loc 1246 ... Consciousness is essentially an awareness of things outside itself

**Pg 106 loc 1325 For music is clearly the most reliably guaranteed medium for the creation of emotion in the human breast.... the music tells the audience what to feel and makes them feel it

** 108 loc 1345 Both film and dream serve, not just to represent and express emotion,  but to open the emotional valves--to let emotion flow freely

**page 136 loc 1686 There is nothing better after a hard day of philosophical thinking and writing than a mindless movie...

**pg 141  loc 1750 theater is a place where people's suggestibility is abnormally high, owing to the dream mechanisms that are there evoked

**page 165 loc 2019 ...always someone on the screen whose place you are imaginatively occupying; without this your involvement would be greatly diminished

** 200 loc 2419 The power of film in creating propaganda should be seen in the same light.  The critical faculties are reduced, the mind entering a state of dreamlike susceptibility...

**page 201 loc 2437 Secondly, movies are primarily a medium for sensation and feeling, not for abstract thought....

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