Cultural Studies Approaches in the Study of Eastern European Cinema: Spaces, Bodies, Memories

The “spatial”, the “bodily” and the “memory turn” define this collection’s structure, made of an overview study and 12 case-studies of post-1989 Eastern European film and cinema. Concepts like space representation and construction are explored through national cinemas and films.

Cultural Studies Approaches in the Study of Eastern European Cinema was pre-launched at the Network of European Cinema and Media Studies conference in Potsdam last July and was then published in December 2016. Further talks about the book have since been held at events including the Spaces of Genders and Ethnicities in Hungarian Film conference organised by Debrecen University, where the book’s editor – Andrea Virginás – gave the plenary talk.

About the Book

The “spatial”, the “bodily”, and the “memory turn” in the humanities and cultural studies are well-canonized developments. These features of our being in the world are fundamental in the medium of cinema, which is an art of spaces, bodies, and memories, increasingly so today when the analogue platform has been running parallel with the digitalized method of filmmaking. The three nodal concepts define the tripartite structure of this volume, composed of an overview study and twelve case-studies of post-1989 Eastern European film and cinema.

The overarching questions of space representation and construction, bodies on screen, issues of national identification in a postcolonial framework, and cinema as a form of cultural memory are explored through the lens of specific national cinemas or contemporary Croatian, Hungarian, Polish, Serbian, Slovakian, Slovenian, and Romanian films. In addition to investigating the cohesive forces that mark the postcommunist Eastern European region as a coherent cultural entity in its cinematic representations, the volume also stands as a witness to the importance of transnational approaches.

For further information on this title, please click here or contact Cambridge Scholars Publishing at The list of chapters and contributors can be seen below.


Chapter 1: The Case for Postcolonial, Postsocialist Media Studies (Anikó Imre)

Postcolonial, Postsocialist Spaces (of the Nation)

Chapter 2: Concrete Utopias: Discourses of Domestic Space in Hungarian Cinema (Zsolt Győri)

Chapter 3: From Heterotopias to Non-Places: The (National) Identity Reviewed
through Spaces of Contemporary Slovak Cinema (Jana Dudková)

Chapter 4: Fragile Diegetic Spaces and Mobile Women: Coping with Trauma
in Hungarian and Romanian Films (Andrea Virginás)

Chapter 5: The Titular Nation in (Post-)Yugoslav Cinema (Edward Alexander)

Postsocialist Subjectivities Embodied In/Through Spaces

Chapter 6: Apostate Bodies: Nimród Antal’s Kontroll and Eastern European
Identity Politics (György Kalmár)

Chapter 7: Corporeality and Otherness in the Cinematic Heterotopias of Bibliothèque
Pascal (Katalin Sándor)

Chapter 8: Monstrous Maternity as Disembodied Materiality in Romanian
New Wave Cinema (Mihaela Ursa)

Chapter 9: Post-Bodies in Hungarian Cinema: Forgotten Bodies and Spaces
in Ágnes Kocsis’ Pál Adrienn (Eszter Ureczky)

Cultural Memory–Work in Postsocialist Cinemas

Chapter 10: “You want the truth? How do you know you won’t choke on it?”:
The Issue of Memory in Aftermath (Elżbieta Durys)

Chapter 11: Paradigms of Rememoration in Postcommunist Romanian Cinema (Claudiu Turcuș)

Chapter 12: The Eternal Return of Slovak Cinema: Narrative Structures, Genre Codes
and Cinematic Memory after 1989 (Katarína Mišíková)

Chapter 13: Making and Breaking the New Wave Canon in Romanian Cinema (Doru Pop)

About the Editor

Andrea Virginás is Associate Professor in the Media Department of Sapientia University, Cluj-Napoca, Romania. Her research concerns film cultures in mainstream and peripheral contexts, focusing on film genres and production issues, as well as feminist film and cultural trauma theory. She has published three volumes and a large number of studies, reviews and criticism focusing on film history and the theory of small and mainstream cinemas.

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