[Blueboard] Kritika Kultura Lecture Series

Department of English doe at admu.edu.ph
Mon Jun 22 09:25:24 PHT 2009


Kritika Kultura Lecture Series
features
THE FANTASTIC AS TEMPORAL TRANSLATION: THE ASWANG AND OCCULT NATIONAL TIMES

a lecture by

Bliss Cua Lim, Associate Professor of Film and Media Studies and  
Visual Studies, University of California, Irvine

July 10, Friday, 4.30-6 pm, NGF, Horacio de la Costa Bldg.



The lecture:

Under modernity, time is regarded as linear and measurable by clocks  
and calendars. Despite the historicity of clock-time itself, the  
modern concept of time is considered universal and culturally neutral.  
What Walter Benjamin called ''homogeneous, empty time'' founds the  
modern notions of progress and a uniform global present in which the   
past and other forms of time consciousness are seen as superseded.

In this lecture, drawn from her forthcoming book, Translating Time:  
Cinema, the Fantastic, and Temporal Critique (Duke University  
Press,2009), Bliss Cua Lim theorizes the fantastic as a form of  
temporal translation, arguing that fantastic cinema depicts the  
coexistence of other modes of being alongside and within the modern  
present, disclosing multiple ''immiscible'' times that strain against  
homogeneous time. Immiscible temporalities undermine the fantasy of a  
singular national meanwhile and emphasize multiple times of reception.

Immiscible times surfaced conspicuously when the 1992 Philippine  
presidential elections were disrupted by supernatural sightings of an  
aswang (a winged, nocturnal viscera-sucking monster) in the slums of  
Tondo. This lecture considers a Filipino horror film cycle by  
directors Peque Gallaga and Lore Reyes that sought to exploit the  
tremendous popular rumorscape of the aswang in the early 1990s. Though  
newspapers reported the proliferation of aswang accounts ''during''  
the  1992 elections, the presumed calendrical coincidence of these two  
  worlds ''those to which aswang and modern political processes
belong'' came undone. Aswang narratives across various media drew on  
reserves of colonial and neocolonial translations of fantastic  
accounts, ranging from sixteenth-century Spanish missionary  
ethnologies of ''native superstitions,'' to the discourse of  
twentieth-century anthropology, to a cynical American CIA operative's   
implantation of aswang rumors in a ''psy-war'' ruse against Filipino   
Communist guerillas in the 1950s.


The Speaker:

Bliss Cua Lim (Ph.D. Cinema Studies, New York University) is Associate  
Professor of Film and Media Studies and Visual Studies at the  
University of California, Irvine. Her research and teaching center on  
Philippine and Hong Kong cinema; temporality; postcolonial and  
feminist film theory; transnational horror and the fantastic; and  
taste cultures. Her work has appeared in the journals positions: east  
asia cultures critique, Camera Obscura, Velvet Light Trap, Asian  
Cinema, Spectator, and Art Journal; and in the book anthologies Film   
and Literature: A Reader; Geopolitics of the Visible:  Essays on   
Philippine Film Cultures, and Hong Kong Film, Hollywood And The New  
Global Cinema. Her book, Translating Time: Cinema, the Fantastic, and  
Temporal Critique is forthcoming in Fall 2009 from Duke University  
Press.


-- 
Department of English
School of Humanities
Ateneo de Manila University
Katipunan Avenue, Loyola Heights,
Quezon City 1108
Tel. no.: 426-6001 local 5310/5311
Telefax: 426-6201

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