Raz Yousef’s analysis of Waltz with Bashir distinguishes private/personal memory from collective national memory and history. Consider the ways in which these differ, the ways in which trauma is understood in terms of memory and/or representation, and how these are then uniquely expressed in this film in terms of narrative (through dreams, hallucinations, and interviews) and aesthetics (through surreal animations as well as documentary footage).
Narratives are ways of making sense of particular events; the social, cultural, political, etc. history of a group; and one’s identity and place in the world. Address the ways in which particular narrative patterns of time, narrative spaces, and/or narrative perspectives work to convey an event, group, or individual. To what degree does it follow a classical or alternative film narrative? What does its particular approach seem to say about time, memory, or the degree to which we might see or understand ourselves or events?
Address the apparent rhetorical positions, organizations, and/or other approaches to the documentary examples provided in the blackboard “Clips” folder (primarily), and other documentaries you have seen. In what ways do they present a particular argument, lead the viewer to see the world in a certain way, and/or comment on the nature of documentary (explicitly or otherwise)?
Berger’s essay presents a broad range of rich insights into the relationships between humans and animals. I welcome your response to any aspects you find interesting, surprising, or confusing. In particular, I encourage you to consider animals in relation to language, metaphor, and mortality/immortality, as well as the ways in which animals are sentimentalized and mediated (in zoos, documentaries, children’s books, etc.) in postindustrial societies.
How does Berger’s understanding of the modern, industrialized person’s relationship to the animal provide some possible insights into Treadwell’s (and/or Herzog’s) view of the grizzly bear?