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February 1994


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James Michael Loter <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Sun, 27 Feb 1994 13:57:13 -0600
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On Sun, 27 Feb 1994, Esteban Serrano wrote:
> To me, the "death of the author" perspective brings forth the idea that
> MEANING IS NOT THE PRIVILEDGE OF THE AUTHOR. A film, as any work of art,
> is not an idea, but a text.  If filmmakers were only interested in ideas,
> they would not make films; they would write or give press conferences.
> Films are complex texts, and as such, are open to many readings.
> A perfect example of this has been this LIst's very diverse, and in many
> cases, opposite interpretations of The Piano. This space of conflict is
> proof that The Piano is art. Bad movies lead the viewer to one reading;
> good movies challenge the viewer to the possibility of multiple ones.
i don't think that admitting that meaning and intention are equivilant in
any way limits interpretation, nor do aesthetic judgments about 'good'
art and 'bad' art change the PROCESS of interpretation.  one interprets
the meaning of *The Piano* the same way one interprets the meaning of
*Porky's*, or even, for that matter, the book *The Piano* by Jane
Campion, or any press conference or interview she may give.
acknowledging this does not change the fact that there can be
(potentially) 5 billion interpretations of a single image at any given
time, nor does it change the fact that there is only one meaning behind
that image.