Movement and Time. The role of Image in the thought of Gilles Deleuze.
edited by D. Cantone and A. Colombo
The theme of image and imagination, in Gilles Deleuze's thought, has always played a central, albeit not unique, role. On the one hand it constitutes an element of continuity and dialogue with Henri Bergson's thought, particularly with Matter and Memory. On the other it is a critical tool, directed especially against the "image of thought" handed down by the history of official and academic philosophy. Both of these dimensions, which for the sake of brevity we will call the theoretical instance and the critical instance, find their most obvious declination in Deleuze's attempt to think the image outside the realm of mere psychological or idealistic representation. For Deleuze, specifically since the 1980s, but decisively earlier as well, the image is the matrix of an intense operation aimed at completely redesigning the field of philosophy, opening its language to the artistic practices (cinematic and otherwise) of its time and, at the same time, undoing those mechanisms of thought aimed at perpetrating hierarchies or divisions that impoverish our participation in reality. The concept of "image," in fact, ever since Bergson, is a way of rethinking and rearticulating the relationship between subject and object, between mind and perceived reality: neither thing nor mere representation, the image immediately makes us an active part of the world without, however, identifying with the reflective consciousness we may have of it. There is thus no doubt that Deleuze's consideration of the concept of image is not merely aesthetic, but concerns the very logic by which a thought becomes concrete, encounters the real and is constituted, signs and languages bring forth their meaning: the image of a thought is the intensive and problematic imprint that enlivens and unfolds that thought itself, in connection with the real from which it emerges.
Confirming the extent to which the 1980s is the time when Deleuze deals most decisively with the theme of the image are the two texts Deleuze published on cinema. In 1983, Cinema 1: The Movement-Image, and in 1985, Cinema 2: The Time-Image. The two works merely deepen a now long-open confrontation with the structural problem of representation and consciousness, understood not only (as we have already proposed) in their value as a taxonomy of signs, but also in their ontological and transcendental profile. Indeed, the repeated and constant presence of Bergson in these very texts is not accidental, just as Deleuze's own reference, in the opening of Cinema 1, to the works of Pierce, Mendeleev or Linnaeus is not ambiguous or insignificant; an unmistakable sign of the markedly theoretical, if not even ontological, stakes involved. We can thus summarize by saying that the image represents for Deleuze a possible way to conceptualize the productive logics of which the real is intrinsically constituted, as well as a fundamental tool to begin to compose a true linguistic classification of the transcendental structures of the world that is unencumbered, however, by the "Cartesian" categories of subject, identity, essence or nature. On the other hand, the image and its faculty of reference, i.e., imagination, are also a means to fully rethink the role of philosophy, its limits, boundaries and purposes, as well as the languages it can make use of.
2023 will mark forty years since the publication of Cinema 1. Image-Movement, as well as approaching sixty years since the release of Proust and Signs (2024). In turn, in 2021 Francis Bacon: The Logic of Sensation has reached forty years since its first appearance. These anniversaries offer a unique opportunity to reflect on the role of aesthetics, art, cinema, and, more generally, the concept of the image in Deleuze's thought. It is therefore to this part of Deleuze's thought that the present issue of "Scenario" is dedicated. Scholars eager to participate in the Call are invited to offer contributions that investigate the theme of the imagination in contemporary French thought, as well as studies and reflections that radicalize or develop Deleuzian investigations into cinema, language, literature and art.
- The importance of the image theme in Deleuze's conceptual production.
- Relationship between philosophy, with special reference to Gilles Deleuze, and contemporary visual arts.
- Reception and influence of Deleuze's work in contemporary philosophical debates on cinema, new media, digital philosophy.
- The theme of the image in dialogue with Deleuze's reference authors (Kant, Nietzsche, Bergson, Pierce...)
Deadline for submitting proposals: December 15, 2023 (email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org)
Notification of acceptance or refusal of the proposal after the peer review process: February 1, 2024.
Deadline for submitting the final article (after the potential revisions required by the reviewers): March 7, 2024.
Publication of the volume expected in June 2024.