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Feasting on Allegory: On Bridget Elliott and Anthony Purdy, Peter Greenaway: Architecture and Allegory

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  • Linguistics
  • Philosophy


Microsoft Word - 19Willoquet.docx Film-Philosophy 2.1 1998 Paula Willoquet-Maricondi Feasting on Allegory Bridget Elliott and Anthony Purdy Peter Greenaway: Architecture and Allegory Academy Editions, 1997 ISBN 0-471-97691-1 128 pp. 'Cinema documents death at work' (Cocteau) 'The demands of representation, the laws of current Western genre of knowing, require an endless list of objects -- human and otherwise -- to acquire as our own. And when we submit to this law, we forfeit a certain claim to the purely ethical' (Peggy Phelan). Bridget Elliott and Anthony Purdy's Peter Greenaway: Architecture and Allegory is an impressive book: a feast for the eyes and for the mind. Elliott and Purdy are, of course, not newcomers to Greenaway; they have published extensively on the British artist, and this first full-length study is the piece de resistence in their ongoing exploration of the role of the Body and of technologies of recording and representation in Greenaway. The authors revisit some of the material previously explored in their 'Artificial Eye/Artificial You: Getting Greenaway or Mything the Point', and, in doing so, bring out new insights and draw from an impressive bank of theoretical discourse on art history, literature, philosophy, film, and architecture. Architecture and Allegory is the consummation of a most fruitful collaboration between two scholars with different but complementary areas of expertise, and it is conclusive evidence that Greenaway must be approached interdisciplinarily. The book is generally very accessible and will be useful to both the novice and the long- time student of Greenaway, although I will offer some suggestions regarding the order in which chapters might preferably be read by those not terribly familiar with Greenaway or with the theoretical discourse deployed here. The book will also be of interest to readers interested in thinking through the implications for philosophy and film -- and life, f

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