so i'm excited because i've decided that i will go to the PSU conference. i've been accepted for the first time (first time submitting, so that bodes well, i guess). i'm doing a little film about film, multimodal textwork as something i'm calling rhetorico-kinetic sculpture (it's a little precious, but i'm sort of going for an association w/rhetoric as art rather than an art of rhetoric). i'm thinking "performative" in that the film wants to be the argument, the art.
i have never simply shown my film as my argument, and this is because of where we (still) are in our field . . . beholden to written discourse (even if it's spoken . . . at the conference gig, it's assumed that you've written something). i got completely ripped apart at a recent conference out West . . . and i had even intro'd the film by saying that "i wish i didn't have to explain this, but since we're not there yet . . . " (and i proceeded to explain what they would be seeing, which i often find so sad) . . . . but even having said this, i was attacked, ripped apart, . . . dismissed for assuming that image can operate apart from written discourse.
maybe it's an acquired disposition that emerges as one feels more and more right in calling herself "a filmmaker," as she discovers a joyful way of seeing and being that evolves from production, from making films . . . from working with more than one track (sometimes multiple video and audio tracks) . . . maybe it's this stance that allows me to find this (conference) attack absurd (then and now, although then, i was fairly speechless . . . they were comp luminairies attacking me, one on one side and one on the other. Chuck Bazerman sat near me and occasionally attempted to temper the attack with his gentle understanding. thank God i had him star in my first film . . . God love Chuck. ). and i realize that we are called upon to work it out in written discourse, especially given the turf wars w/ film studies, communication, multimedia, etc. . . . but so i like to think w/ Jean-Luc Godard, who, speaking in terms of production on his work as critic, writer, and filmmaker, identifies “a clear continuity between all forms of expression” arguing, “It’s all one. The important thing is to approach it from the side which suits you best” (qtd in Narboni and Milne 171). so i'm thinking that the visual suits me best and i'm thinking about how we work that out . . . the autonomy of the image-text (but why the need to write it? why can't we work it out in our image-texts? . . . i plan to try and i believe that we, as rhetoricians and rhetors and filmmakers and artists have skills sufficient to the task of finding the available means of [visual, extra-textual] persuasion in/for a given situation . . . looking forward to PSU, where i'm thinking/hoping that my audience will accept my image-text, my film as my argument . . . my art). i'll unpack later . . .
on Godard: Critical Writings.
Ed Jean Narboni & Tom Milne.
Introduction, Richard Roud.
NY: Da Capo Press, 1986.