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Popular Cinema as Popular Resistance

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Most of the readings of James Cameron's Avatar as a subversive film focus on the alleged critique provided by the film on predatory corporate capitalism, the destruction of the environment and the planet, the colonisation and annihilation of indigenous people, and the militarisation of the globe through the ‘security bubble’ generated by ‘disaster capitalism’. As such, the film has been read allegorically as an anti-corporatist, anti-capitalist, anti-militarist and anti-colonialist-imperialist text which champions the environment and the rights of indigenous people (and non-human animals) against the alliance of the military-industrial complex with science and technology. This article focuses on how the major interpretative frameworks of reading Avatar against the grain of the Hollywood blockbuster resonate with the Palestinian condition and therefore made the film popular with the Palestinian non-violent resistance to Israeli occupation and colonisation.
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Keywords: Avatar; Eyal Weizman; Hollywood; James Cameron; Mahmud Darwish; Palestine; Palestinian resistance; Yosefa Loshitzky; anti-capitalist; anti-colonialist; blockbuster; indigenous people; popular cinema

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2012-03-01

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