Between the national and the transnational: Bulgarian post-communist cinema
Author: Trifonova, Temenuga
Source: Studies in Eastern European Cinema, Volume 2, Number 2, July 2011 , pp. 211-225(15)
Abstract:This article considers the ways in which recent Bulgarian films – Pismo do Amerika/Letter to America (Iglika Triffonova 2001), Shivachki/Seamstresses (Lyudmil Todorov 2007), Prognoza/Forecast (Zornitsa Sophia 2008), Svetat e goliam i spasenie debne otvsiakude/The World Is Big and Salvation Lurks around the Corner (Stephan Komandarev 2008) and Iztochni piesi/Eastern Plays (Kamen Kalev 2009) – construct national identity in terms of two opposite movements: the movement/escape from the city to the village (imagined as a ‘return’ to the nation’s roots) and the movement from Bulgaria to ‘Europe’ (similarly imagined as a ‘return’ to, or a ‘reclaiming’ of, the nation’s European origins). The article argues that the dominant discourse informing post-communist Bulgarian cinema is a conservative nationalistic discourse based on an obsolete notion of national identity rooted in the nation’s ethno-scape, ethno-history and ethno-memory, which are often regarded as ‘corrupted’ by post-communist developments, including villagecity migration, immigration and globalization.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: York University
Publication date: July 26, 2011
- In the years since the collapse of the Berlin Wall and the political changes of 1989/90, there has been a growing interest in the cinemas of the former countries of the Eastern Bloc. There is a growing community of scholars, including a number of students working for post-graduate qualifications, who are engaged with film but also media, culture, and art (of one form or another) from the region. This is not a community existing on the margins of academia but one which is nationally and internationally recognised for the centrality and high quality of its scholarship. Studies in Eastern European Cinema provides a dynamic, innovative, regular, specialised peer-reviewed academic outlet and discursive focus for the world-wide community of Eastern European film scholars, edited by a board of experienced, internationally recognised experts in the field.
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