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November 1997, Week 3


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Nick Chapman <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 21 Nov 1997 01:09:24 -0800
text/plain (43 lines)
Viet Nguyen wrote:
>corporate location.  It would be difficult to see in what way the
>_reception_ of ideological content would not be altered by the ways in
>which films are produced, distributed, promoted, etc.  For films which
>expressly attack capitalism, this becomes an added problem.  Let me clarify
I'm big into ideological criticism, so don't misunderstand me as rejecting
it, but I really can't see how "_reception_ of ideological content" is or
could be altered "by the ways in which films are produced [or]
distributed."  Promoted, yes, since that will influence the context /
background that viewers bring to their reception, but except insofar as
specifics about a film's production and distribution become part of the
general context / background people bring to a film (as with, say,
Waterworld), again informing the viewer's perceptions, I don't see how they
can influence reception.
Perhaps you are thinking very broadly: that film viewers are all aware,
albeit perhaps dimly at times or in some cases, that (most) films are
produced by large corporations, as profit-making ventures.  Fewer but still
many viewers may also be aware that films constitute part of the US's
second largest export industry (entertainment / culture) after the
aerospace industry (and gaining fast on it) and now routinely earn, and
need to earn, at least 50% of their profits on overseas sales.  Etc.  That
information about production and distribution I can see affecting at least
in limited ways any ideological reading of a film, particularly a film, eg,
attacking capitalism, large corporations or US cultural hegemony.
Is that what you had in mind?
   Nick Chapman [log in to unmask]
   Program in American Culture, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor MI
48109-1027      USA
   There can, of course, be no apolitical scholarship.  -- Chandra Talpade
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