The Intervals of Cinema
by Jacques Rancière Translated by John Howe
Part of the Essential Rancière series
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Paperback with free ebook
$19.95$13.9630% off
160 pages / September 2019 / 9781788736602
October 2014 / 9781781686089
Paperback with free ebook
160 pages / October 2014 / 9781781686065

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Hardback with free ebook
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160 pages / October 2014 / 9781781686072

An essential analysis of cinema from one of the great figures of French philosophy

The cinema, like language, can be said to exist as a system of differences. In his latest book the acclaimed philosopher Jacques Rancière relates cinema to literature and theatre. With literature, he argues, cinema takes its narrative conventions, while at the same time effacing its images and its philosophy; and it rejects theatre, while also fulfilling theatre’s dream. Built on these contradictions, the cinema is the real, material space in which one feels moved by the spectacle of shadows. Thus for Rancière, the cinema is the always disappointed dream of a language of images.


“Whether detailing Bela Tarr’s signature panning shots or the role of flames in Vincente Minnelli, Rancière is a passionate and acute cinephile.”

“Rancière’s writings offer one of the few conceptualizations of how we are to continue to resist.”

“His art lies in the rigor of his argument—its careful, precise unfolding—and at the same time not treating his reader, whether university professor or unemployed actress, as an imbecile.”

“In the face of impossible attempts to proceed with progressive ideas within the terms of postmodernist discourse, Rancière shows a way out of the malaise.”

“A welcome text … provides readers with a fascinating glimpse into how Rancière thinks about films and how the forms of visibility in cinema allow for a distribution of the sensible through cinema's relationship to literature, art, and politics.”

“Ranciére’s amateurism—a euphemism for philosophical excursions into his experience of cinema—is refreshing.”

“Rancière’s writing is remarkably clear, in keeping with his highly egalitarian politics. This is not to say that his writing is not as beautiful as some of the most linguistically pyrotechnic of French philosophers: Cixous, Kristeva, Barthes, Foucault, Derrida. Its beauty emerges not from the play of the signifier, but from a passionate belief that his arguments—in this case, these readings of moments in the history of cinema, collected under the title The Intervals of Cinema—are accessible to anybody.””

The Intervals of Cinema restores something vital to political thought and practice that the pursuit of a perspective free from ideology often suppressed: the positive capacity we all share to forge or reshape our own fictions. Whether we are prepared to make the leap to equality remains to be seen. But with Intervals, Rancière proves that there is cinema waiting for us if we do.”

“Rancière presents a compelling argument for the true value of film and how the cinematic apparatus operates outside of its narrative and artistic influences.”

“This is a welcome addition to the growing body of work by Rancière in translation, and will be essential and enjoyable reading for students of the theory of cinema.”

Verso recommends