Questioning Criticism: Puzzles and Possibilities in the Art-form of Appreciation

Roundtable: Prof. Jason Jacobs, Dr Ted Nannicelli, Dr Elliott Logan, Dr Mathew Cipa

Date: Friday 14 October 2022
Time: 12–1pm
Location: Online via Zoom and in-person at the SCA Writer's Studio (Level 6, Michie Building)


Abstract

Critical practice is central to expanding our understanding of both specific films and the art-form of cinema as a whole. For scholars such as Alex Clayton and Andrew Klevan, exemplary criticism fulfils a range of functions: it can deepen our interest in individual films, reveal new meanings and perspectives, expand our sense of the medium, confront our assumptions about value, and sharpen our ability to discriminate. But what constitutes good criticism, and what should we expect it to achieve? What are the limitations of critical practice, especially as it relates to the process of translating and interpreting the multi-sensory experience of moving images into literary prose? And how does the shifting critical appreciation of certain filmmakers across time reveal the puzzles and possibilities of critical practice?

This roundtable begins to examine the act of criticism - what we might term the art-form of appreciation - and the questions raised by a practice that is central to the discipline of film and television studies. Jason Jacobs considers the puzzle of criticism in the context of what we should and can expect from it: what is it that criticism actually achieves? Elliott Logan examines the merits and limitations of video essays, and how audio-visual criticism sits as a medium of critical response to moving-image artworks. Ted Nannicelli and Matthew Cipa explore the case study of director Abel Ferrara, and the divisiveness of the critical reception of his oeuvre due to the films’ strident unsettling of traditional distinctions between high and low film genres

 


Presenters

Dr Elliott Logan is Lecturer in the School of Media, Film and Journalism at Monash University. He is the author of Breaking Bad and Dignity (Palgrave Macmillan, 2016) and is Associate Editor of the journal Series.

Jason Jacobs is Professor of Film and Television Studies at the University of Queensland and author of The Intimate Screen (Clarendon Press, 2000), Body Trauma TV (BFI, 2003), Deadwood (BFI, 2012), and David Milch (Manchester University Press, 2019).

Ted Nannicelli is Senior Lecturer in Film and Television Studies, School of Communication and Arts, University of Queensland, Australia. He is the editor of Projections: The Journal for Movies and Mind and author of Artistic Creation and Ethical Criticism.

Dr Matthew Cipa teaches at The University of Queensland in film and television studies. His first monograph, Is Harpo Free? And Other Questions of the Metaphysical Screen is under contract with SUNY Press. He is a contributor to Autism in Film and Television: On the Island (2022, University of Texas Press).


 

About Research Seminar and Workshop Series

 


School of Communication and Arts Research Seminar Series

The research seminar and workshop series occur each semester, each with a different topic and guest speaker from UQ or otherwise.

Friday, 12 August
12-1pm

Hybrid: Online via Zoom and in person at the
SCA Writer's Studio
(Level 6, Michie)

Queering Dark Academic within a New Adult Fiction ContextShaun Stephen

Friday, 19 August
12-1pm

Hybrid: Online via Zoom and in person at the
SCA Writer's Studio
(Level 6, Michie)

Landscape Symbolism and the Two Paths Through Life

Mike Levy

Friday, 16 September
12-1pm

Hybrid: Online via Zoom and in person at the
SCA Writer's Studio
(Level 6, Michie)

We Are All Preppers Now: Doomsday preppers, climate activists and subcultures of imminent collapse.

Dr Tom Doig

Friday, 14 October
12-1pm

Hybrid: Online via Zoom and in person at the
SCA Writer's Studio
(Level 6, Michie)

Questioning Criticism: Puzzles and Possibilities in the Art-form of Appreciation

Prof. Jason Jacobs

Dr Ted Nannicelli

Dr Elliot Logan

Dr Matthew Cipa

Friday, 4 November
3-5pm

SCA Writer's Studio
(Level 6, Michie)

Discursive Disruption, Populist Communication and Democracy

Dr Elena Block

Friday, 2 December
1-2pm

Hybrid: Online via Zoom and in person at the
SCA Writer's Studio
(Level 6, Michie)

Play as research and pedagogical strategyDr Jasper van Vught (Utretcht University)

 

Venue

Online via Zoom and in-person at the SCA Writer's Studio (Level 6, Michie Building)