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I have been doing some work in the past year or so on the representation
of space in films made in USA and Europe by transnational and exilic
filmmakers.  In an upcoming article in East West Film Journal (8:2, 1994)
I discuss the dynamics of closed spaces and spaces of immensity and the
inscription of memory, loss, nostalgia, nationality, gender, and ethnciity.
In transnational and exilic films made by independent and third world
filmmakers in the West, the closed spaces are usually highly
distopic while the open spaces are utopian.  One represents here
and now while the other encodes there and then.  Although there are rare
cases in which claustrophobia is valorized.
Hamid Naficy
Department of Art and Art History
Rice University
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