Cinematic Uses of the Past

Landy, Marcia

From the first, cinema has sustained a romance with the past. The nature of this attachment, and what it reveals about our culture, is the subject of Marcia Landy's book. Cinematic Uses of the Past looks at British, American, Italian, and African films for what they can tell us about popular history and our cultural investment in certain images of the past.

Landy peruses six different moments in the history of cinema, employing the theories of Nietzsche and Gramsci. Her reading of these films explores their investments in history and memory in relation to ideas of nation, sexuality, gender, and race. Among the films she discusses are A Fistful of Dynamite, The Scarlet Empress, Dance with a Stranger, Holocaust, Schindler's List, Le camp de Thiaroye, Guelwaar, The Leopard, and Veronika Voss.

Engages with various of Deleuze's ideas at different points throughout.

Landy, Marcia, Cinematic Uses of the Past. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1996.