Introduction: The ring of the true in contemporary media

by Ilona Hongisto, Toni Pape, and Alanna Thain The editorial process for this special section began before the term ‘post-truth’ was picked up and circulated widely in the summer and autumn of 2016 to address the increasing irrelevance of fact-based politics in the wake of new populisms. Since post-truth is the proverbial elephant in the […]

Cinema’s Turing test: Consciousness, digitality, and operability in ‘Hardcore Henry’

by Chang-Min Yu Will images created from this optical system, this kind of robot-brain that is the cinematographic apparatus, have as great an influence upon the evolution of culture and civilization? – Jean Epstein, The Intelligence of a Machine In HBO’s new hit series Westworld (2016), one character claims that ‘our hosts began to pass […]

Acts of laughter, acts of tears: The production of ‘truth-effects’ in Oriana Fox’s ‘The O Show’ and Gillian Wearing’s ‘Self Made’

by Maria Walsh There was a time in the not too distant past when, in theory at least, claiming the truth of one’s identity was viewed with suspicion. In poststructuralist theories, particularly of the psychoanalytic persuasion, the subject is split from knowing itself and thereby from proffering a unified identity. Truth here is at best […]

Editorial Necsus

A decade ago, American political satirist Stephen Colbert coined the term ‘truthiness’ in his program ‘The Wørd’, to call attention to a striking pathology in American politics, broadcasting, and business: to purposefully create poisonous information environments not based on logic, examination, or facts, but rather depending on affects, intuitions, and perceptions. Colbert’s main case in […]

Problems with the gendered POV shot in ‘Lilya 4-Ever’

by Kiera Sandusky I made an earlier version of this video for my final project in Form and Meaning, a core film/video class at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago meant to give a theoretical understanding of film editing. Kevin B. Lee taught my section of the class and gave us the opportunity […]

My crush was a superstar

by Chloé Galibert-Laîné This video was produced as part of an ongoing collaborative project on terrorist media. The project aims to explore the contents and contexts for production of terrorist media and to question how these images migrate from social media to news broadcasts, from phones to computers, from the Middle East to other regions […]

Snake oil in N—–town

by Steven Boone I happened upon Roger Corman’s 1962 film The Intruder while casually surfing YouTube. Some twist of algorithmic fate led the site to suggest that movie for me. Less than five minutes into the film I understood why: William Shatner, America’s Captain, pop sci-fi royalty, utters the word ‘nigger’. YouTube knows that I […]

Outbreak of violent protests prompts a state of emergency

by​ ​THE ANTI-BANALITY UNION​, 1 March 2017 It echoed loudly in an escalating confrontation between extreme ends of the political spectrum.[1] The presence of thousands of camouflage-clad National Guard troops and armored vehicles was a sign that the city was not quite back to normal. While many protesters called for an end to the citywide […]

False color/real life: Chromo-politics and François Laruelle’s photo-fiction

by Yvette Granata Introduction  Responding to a journalist’s demand to justify the amount of violence in Pierrot le fou (1965), Godard insisted that there was no blood in his films, just the color red.[1] His remark draws the line for approaching color not only through questions of its representational properties, but through the realism of […]

Current trends across three European human rights film festivals

Three major human rights film festivals (HRFFs) take place on the European continent annually in March. In 2017 the line-up was as follows: One World was held in Prague, Czech Republic from 6-15 March; the International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights (FIFDH) in Geneva, Switzerland unfolded between 10-19 March; and Movies that Matter […]

Archives of the present − memory work in the making: ‘Transmission from the Liberated Zones’ (Filipa César, 2015)

National libraries, museums, and archives are potential sites for knowledge production and shared memory work, but they tend also to be monuments of state power, of selection and exclusion. Film and moving images have always played a formative role in cultural commemoration, and the resistance of cinematic counter-memories has also famously illuminated the critical potential […]

Statistic intersubjectivity: A phenomenology of television audiences

by Christian Ferencz-Flatz 
In the following I will first sketch out a phenomenological interpretation of Walter Benjamin’s reflections on film-viewership, which he considers to be symptomatic for contemporary perception in general, by focusing especially on the implicit theory of intersubjectivity that underpins them.

Critique, protest, activism, and the video essay

by Kevin B. Lee This selection of video essays is curated for an issue of the journal NECSUS with the special section theme #True. This begs the question of how this word applies to the video essay, particularly those featured in this selection meant to represent possibilities for the video essay to function as social […]

For a radical media archaeology: A conversation with Wolfgang Ernst

by Elodie A. Roy In his numerous writings on archives, technologies, and time media archaeologist Wolfgang Ernst indefatigably interrogates the ways in which technical and digital media do not only exist in time but produce temporalities – and temporealities – of their own.[1] This interview sheds light on media archaeology as a discipline emerging within […]

Rethinking geolinguistic spaces: The San Sebastian Film Festival between Latin America and Europe

The San Sebastian Film Festival, also known as the Zinemaldia (‘the film festival’ in the Basque language), celebrated its 64th edition from 16-24 September 2016. The festival location in the Basque Country near the Spanish border with France has influenced its development since its inception in 1953. Modelled after the pioneering festivals Venice and Cannes, […]