The Lure of the breach: invisibility and the dissolution of cinematic vision

In her chapter on Tom Joslin’s video AIDS diary Silverlake Life: The View from here (1993), Peggy Phelan argues that Joslin’s video summons and directs its viewer to a kind of off-screen time. Discussing a close up of Joslin’s eye that appears toward the end of the video, Phelan writes that as his eye “gazes in an out-of-focus way at something whose interiority – or perhaps immense exteriority – can no longer be linked to our gaze… the camera points to a way of seeing that we may be able to comprehend, if not perform… Dissolving vision, this film composed of seen images, achieves an image against the logic of the film itself. It escapes its own terms and sends the spectator into a cinema of his or her imaginary” (Phelan, p. 168). Joslin’s eye, she writes, “captivated by a different image, in a different time than the ones the camera can record,” stares “off time” (emphasis added. Phelan, p. 172). Clustered around Phelan’s somewhat awkward phrase “staring off time” is a complex argument about cinematic time, (in)visibility, and spectatorship that traces the ways that Joslin’s video undoes the terms of cinematic vision in favour of what she suggestively calls an unseen cinema. In returning to Phelan’s analysis of Joslin’s video here, ten years after its publication in her book Mourning Sex, I want to use her discussion of Silverlake Life’s dissolution of cinematic vision as a starting point for proposing what I would call a cinema of invisibility.

Silverlake Life is a video diary in which Joslin records his living with dying. Joslin began the video soon after being diagnosed with HIV and when disease was already beginning to make its relentless claims on his body. The video documents Joslin’s and his partner Mark Massi’s life during this period, tracking the movement of illness across Joslin’s and Massi’s bodies and its impact on their daily lives. Phelan’s reading of Silverlake Life focuses on the ways that the video performs and enables particular forms of mourning. Engaging with many of the questions and issues that have been at the forefront of understandings of cinematic time – film’s ability to record and archive time, its capacity to play with ideas of temporal direction, and its relations to and difference from the temporality of the photograph – her chapter unravels the ways that Joslin’s video re-figures the relations between film, time, and death (Phelan, p. 156). Written on the eve of the return to questions of time in recent film and media theory, Phelan’s chapter also charts a somewhat different conceptual terrain to later work on cinematic time, and in returning to her analysis here I also want to draw out and amplify some of the ways that Phelan explores the relations between representations and sensations of time and spectatorship and look at what this discussion might contribute to current debates around cinematic time.

For Phelan, Silverlake Life’s image practice is one that takes place at the limits of cinematic vision. Summoning a “cinema that it cannot film” (Phelan, p. 172), Joslin’s video, Phelan argues, “achieves an image against the logic of the film itself” and does so, moreover, by performing its own blindness. At the heart of Phelan’s remarkable analysis of Joslin’s equally remarkable video is her argument that Silverlake Life dissolves vision, and the scene that exemplifies this for Phelan (and which she sees as setting in place the video’s image practice) is the shot of Joslin’s eye and what she describes as its stare off time. Very importantly the vision that is in question here is not so much that of Joslin, the autobiographical subject of the video, but rather that of the camera itself. For Phelan, it is through this dissolution of its own vision that Silverlake Life sends its spectator to a cinema of his or her own imaginary where they can encounter their own dead (and own deaths).

But as Phelan’s references to an off screen time suggest, the summoning of this unseen cinema would seem to be intimately bound to and depend upon the troubling of cinematic time. As Phelan writes: “Staring off time (in a manner analogous to staring off frame, but in a temporal rather than spatial key), Joslin creates a space for the spectator to view the lives of the dying who are not physically there” (Phelan, p. 172). While Phelan likens this staring off time to the more familiar idea of the look off-screen, “off time” would seem to be of a very different order to its more familiar and less troublesome relative. After all, off screen space can always, in principle at least, be brought into view, either through a cut to a new shot or through camera movement, and one of its functions is to give the shot temporal direction. What we could tentatively call, following Phelan, off-screen time, on the other hand, would never seem to be fully off-screen. Rather than giving the shot temporal direction and serving diegetic time, off-screen time troubles the temporality of the image, and does so because it fractures its apparent temporal homogeneity. Phelan’s phrase ‘off time,’ therefore, could be understood as referring to a kind of temporal blind field.

What Phelan describes as the dissolving of vision could also be described as the eclipsing of cinematic vision, through which the manifest, visible, image retracts in favour of that which fails to appear. This dissolving or eclipsing of cinematic vision marks – and operates as – a tear in time, and I would argue that what Phelan has identified in this staring off time’s dissolution of vision is a kind of temporal breach or caesura in which time is spatialised. The temporal breach can be understood as a point where temporal continuity is interrupted or suspended. Temporal breaches arise in film (and in the moving image more generally) when the image’s claim to temporal presence and homogeneity is challenged. One way of understanding how such temporal breaches are produced in film would be to think of them through Steven Feld’s suggestive phrase “collaborative expectancies in time.”[1] Feld proposes the idea of collaborative expectancies in time in relation to music, using it to define groove and style and the relations between musicians and their listeners. For my purposes here I am more interested in the suggestiveness of the phrase itself as it offers a useful way of thinking about representations and sensations of time in film. The temporal breach could be understood as resulting from – and entailing – the thwarting of expectancies in time. Because film is a time-based medium, the production and negotiation of “collaborative expectancies in time” between film and viewer are central to a film’s production of meaning and affect. These expectancies in time constitute the rhythms – both audible and inaudible – that course through a film and underlie its representations of time. Of course the primary expectancy in time that is in play in a film is, no doubt, that of temporal movement itself – the expectation that the film will move, unfold, and end, and that diegetic time and apparatus time will be brought to a close at the same time. But this expectancy in time is punctuated, driven and supported by a number of other expectancies in time – those based in generic structurings of time and in narrative for instance, and these, in turn, are supported by other expectancies in time, such as those produced through figure movement and performance, shot duration, and editing amongst others. I would argue that these expectancies in time are primarily constituted and felt rhythmically, and that disparities between the anticipated fall of a beat and the actual fall always make the missed beat palpable in some way. We are perhaps most conscious of the thwarting of collaborative expectancies in time in a film when there is a disparity between the anticipated duration of a movement or shot and its actual duration. In such instances, the anticipated can haunt the actual through the missed beats that are left suspended. It is this co-presence of the actual and the anticipated – in which actual duration is haunted by anticipated duration – that enables the production of the temporal breach in film. And it is this co-presence of the anticipated and the actual (the missed beats that become palpable) that produces the temporal complexity of the breach as a particular kind of image practice.

What such disparities do is refute the image’s claims to temporal unity and singularity. As such they always involve a troubling of cinematic time, for what happens when these mutual expectancies in time are thwarted is that the intertwined temporalities at play in a film unravel. In her book The Emergence of Cinematic Time Mary Ann Doane identifies cinema’s “multiple temporalities” as being those of the apparatus (which she describes as “linear, irreversible, ‘mechanical’”), the diegesis (“the way in which time is represented by the image, the varying invocations of present, past, future, historicity”) and “finally” the “temporality of reception” (Doane, p. 30). If we were to read the temporal breach through Doane’s account, we could argue that the breach results from (and at the same time produces) the unharnessing of these various temporalities from each other. The disparity between actual duration and anticipated duration can unyoke diegetic time from apparatus time by foregrounding the mechanical temporality of the apparatus and leaving it exposed, and in the process, what Doane calls reception time becomes unanchored from both apparatus time and diegetic time because the foregrounding and thwarting of collaborative expectancies in time seem to place the spectator outside the film’s organisation of time. In this respect the breach produces a particular sensation of time, a sensation of time that is characterised by temporal dislocation and untimeliness – the sense of being out of synch, off the beat, untimely.

Michael Shapiro offers a particularly evocative example of a temporal breach brought about by the disparity between actual and anticipated durations in his book Cinematic Political Thought. In the book’s opening chapter, Shapiro quotes a sports report from The New York Times:

This is an image that might endure in the minds of the Lions for months to come: Giants defensive lineman Ray Agnew, after picking off a pass, rumbling 34 yards for a touchdown, his 285 pound body running so slowly it seemed the feat couldn’t be captured on an hourlong highlights show. (cited in Shapiro, p. 10)

Shapiro’s chapter – “Towards a Politics of Now-Time: Reading Hoop Dreams with Kubrick’s Barry Lyndon” – explores the politics of time and value as they are played out on moving bodies and moving images, and the passage from The New York Times both opens the chapter and sets the scene for much of the discussion.[2] As Shapiro comments, the journalist, Mike Freeman, “recognizes that the value of Agnew’s interception is also contingent on its duration” (Shapiro, p. 10). In other words, the value of this touchdown as a post-game event is based, in part, in the relationship between the temporal economies of the sports program, the commodification of the black (male) body and its (obligation to) mobility, and the pace of Agnew’s run.

The description of Agnew’s slow touchdown foregrounds the discrepancy between the duration of this run and the anticipated, almost required, duration of a television touchdown (a discrepancy that is brought to the fore through the event’s future as reproduction and commodity), for as Shapiro points out, Agnew’s body is “slow” here because its movements and their pace (or tempo) are at odds with the temporal demands of television and of the market.[3] What makes this passage so suggestive for thinking about questions of time, reference, and the moving image is the temporal complexity of the image it depicts: the movement that is described in this passage both foregrounds television’s temporal economy and summons a temporal blind field through this collision of two different structurings of time: by being at odds with the temporal demands of the highlights program, Agnew’s movement declares its own future disappearance. The movement of this athlete’s body refuses the regulatory beat of television and professional sports (a refusal which we could almost see as offering a form of antiphony). Rather, in its non-correlation with anticipated duration, it un-anchors itself from the structuring of time of both television and the format of the sports highlights program. The non-match of anticipated and actual duration scores the image with a conflicting rhythm: anticipated duration ghosts the image with its unoccupied beats while the beat of actual duration (here the pace of Agnew’s run) is set adrift, precisely because it is in conflict with the apparatus’, the genre’s, and the market’s ordering of time. As with Walter Benjamin’s understanding of the photograph as a negative image, what lies at the heart of this image (and it is a remarkably cinematic image) is a disappearance – a disappearance that is yet to take place and that has already taken place.[4] In Freeman’s image of Agnew’s touchdown, Agnew disappears in and through his very movement and what is “raised” through this disappearance are the various terms of visibility that are in play.[5]

In popular narrative cinema, we are perhaps most familiar with the temporal breach and its sensation of time in closing scenes that unyoke apparatus time and diegetic time from each other (though even here it is a relatively rare phenomenon). Norma Desmond’s spectacular disappearance at the end of Billy Wilder’s Sunset Boulevard (1950) offers one of the most famous examples of a closing scene that is constituted through a temporal breach. In the film’s final scene, Norma Desmond (Gloria Swanson), the faded and forgotten star of Hollywood’s silent era, stages one of Hollywood cinema’s most famous disappearances. Rather than simply fading from the screen Desmond blazes herself into it, stilling the frame into a vibrating surface of light. In the film’s closing shot her image consumes – and is consumed by – the screen, her features dispersing into white light as eyes, nose, mouth unravel like rows of knitting in an ever-expanding close-up. As Desmond performs her Salomé for what, in the end, is no more than an assortment of newsreel cameras and press photographers, her performance is seemingly unable to “fit” into either the time of the fictional newsreel, nor that of the film itself, spilling over its borders both spatially (her close up oversteps the representational capacities of the camera and becomes formless) and temporally (her movements are too slow, too grand, to be contained in the film’s temporal economy). While Desmond may seem to disappear into the space between frames, it is this fissure itself that appears to be rendered visible in the film’s final shot as the frame fills with something like the film’s blind field. For Sunset Boulevard ends with there being nothing to see: the actress, like so many victims in horror films, is swallowed by the gaze and replaced by the formless vibration of light particles. What makes this closing scene so startling is the way that the image becomes marked by a temporal elsewhere that is rendered oddly visible. Echoing earlier scenes in the film where Norma has been stalled by the projector’s gaze (and it is rarely her own image that captures her in this way – what sends her reeling is the pulsing white light that abolishes representation and suspends time), here it is the spectator that is set adrift in and by this temporal abyss. Like a caesura, it stalls and suspends time’s movement. What gives Sunset Boulevard’s closing shot its force, taking it beyond a character’s disappearance or demise to an unnerving staging of disappearance itself, is the temporal fissure or disjunction that lies at its core.

These temporal breaches or filmic caesuras can render palpable what Ralph Ellison has described as “time’s nodes.” Rather than making the invisible visible, they can give form to invisibility itself, and they do so by staging its temporal structure. In the famous prologue to Ellison’s novel Invisible Man, the novel’s narrator describes racial invisibility by outlining both the temporal structure of this form of social experience and the mode of perception it gives rise to:

Perhaps I like Louis Armstrong’s music because he’s made poetry out of being invisible. I think it must be because he’s unaware that he is invisible. And my own grasp of invisibility aids me to understand his music. Once when I asked for a cigarette, some jokers gave me a reefer, which I lighted when I got home and sat listening to my phonograph. It was a strange evening. Invisibility, let me explain, gives one a slightly different sense of time, you’re never quite on the beat. Sometimes you’re ahead and sometimes behind. Instead of the swift and imperceptible flowing of time, you are aware of its nodes, those points where time stands still or from which it leaps ahead. And you slip into the breaks and look around. That’s what you hear vaguely in Louis’s music. (Ellison, p. 11)

As Ellison writes in this oft-cited passage, to be invisible is to be “never quite on the beat.” Invisibility is an experience of and a position in (an organization of) time and also entails a particular temporal sensibility. What Invisible Man’s narrator hears in the Armstrong recording is the rhythmic expression of this form of temporal experience. With his aural perception aided by the reefer, Ellison’s invisible man hears time’s “nodes, those points where time stands still or from which it leaps ahead.” In this “music of invisibility,” invisibility is given form and made transmissible through the rendering audible of a kind of temporal blind field. As the passage continues further on: “So under the spell of the reefer I discovered a new analytical way of listening to music. The unheard sounds came through, and each melodic line existed of itself, stood out clearly from all the rest, said its piece, and waited patiently for the other voices to speak. That night I found myself hearing not only in time, but in space as well. I not only entered the music but descended, like Dante, into its depths” (Ellison, p. 11). Describing invisibility in terms of its rhythmic structure and foregrounding the form of time consciousness it entails, Ellison shifts the terms in which invisibility is understood, suggesting that questions of visibility and invisibility (and therefore of legibility and recognisability) cannot be separated from questions of time.

Because it marks a cut or a break, and therefore suggests an absence or elision, the temporal breach no doubt always has a privileged relation to invisibility and does so regardless of the medium in which it appears. But in film – and in the moving image more generally – the temporal breach can also operate as a particular kind of spectatorial address, and this is primarily because of the particular sensation of time that it entails. The role of representations and sensations of time in spectatorial address has rarely been given its due. And yet as the most cursory glance at film trailers reminds us, representations and sensations of time play a central role in spectatorial address, signalling the film’s implied market/viewer (and its generic location and affiliations) by demonstrating the promoted film’s “taste” in time.

What sets the spectatorial address of the temporal breach apart from that of other representations of time that we find in cinema is, quite simply, that the temporal breach or tear unanchors the spectator from the sense of temporal movement and direction that are central to both diegetic and apparatus time. In this respect its solicitation of and impact on the spectator is very different to the structuring of time that characterises something like suspense. Suspense, of course, is also associated with invisibility, though here we are dealing with the activation of off-screen space rather than what Phelan has called off (screen) time, and it works to charge and eroticise time. As Doane writes in The Emergence of Cinematic Time “suspense in the cinema, as Pascal Bonitzer has extensively demonstrated, is on the side of invisibility, and depends upon the activation of off-screen space, or the ‘blind field.’ In parallel editing, when shot B is on the screen its legibility is saturated by the absent presence of shot A, and vice versa. Duration is energized by invisibility, by the inability to see all” (Doane, p. 195). The heightened anticipation and dread that characterises suspense works to further harness reception time to diegetic time: it flirts with the possibility of the separation of these two temporalities only to declare their mutual interdependence. The temporal breach on the other hand creates the sense that the spectator has been unbound from the film’s temporal movement, giving the spectator the sensation of being asynchronic, “out of time,” off the beat.

What might be the appeal of such sensations of time? And how might we understand this structuring and experience of what I would call spectatorial time? How can they be understood in terms of the various temporalities that are identified in film? One of the limitations of Doane’s account of film’s multiple temporalities in The Emergence of Cinematic Time is that the temporality of the apparatus and the temporality of reception at times become almost interchangeable in her analysis. By describing the temporality of reception as “the time of sitting in the theatre” (Doane, p. 193), the concept is reduced to little more than the period of watching a film. Certainly Doane points out that the binding of reception time to apparatus time is a product of particular film and exhibition practices. She notes that while the temporality of reception is “theoretically distinct,” it is “nevertheless a temporality which the developing classical cinema attempted to fuse as tightly as possible to that of the apparatus, conferring upon it the same linear predictability and irreversibility. Everything about the theatrical setting – the placement of the screen in relation to the audience, the darkness of the auditorium and its enclosed space – encourages the spectator to honor the relentless temporality of the apparatus. It is possible to look away or to exit momentarily, but in the process something is lost and is felt as such” (Doane, p. 30). Doane adds that experimentation with the temporality of reception has historically “been relegated to an avant-garde at the margins of mainstream cinema” (Doane, p. 30). (The most familiar and canonical examples include some of Andy Warhol’s early films – Sleep [1963] and Blow Job [1963] for instance – and Chantal Akerman’s Jeanne Dielman: 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles [1976].) But conceived of in this way, the idea of reception time seems to offer little. Certainly much extraordinarily generative work has been done on the ways that the relations between these three temporalities produce historically specific modes of spectatorship and forms of historical consciousness (and therefore also forms of time consciousness) – and Doane’s The Emergence of Cinematic Time is particularly important here. Despite the recent (re)turn to a focus on questions of time in contemporary film and media theory, we still seem to be lacking an adequate terminology and conceptual framework for discussing the variety of ways that representations and sensations of time structure and impact on spectatorial experience.

How, then, might we understand the attraction and appeal of representations of time that produce the sensation of temporal dislocation for the spectator? One of the main ways that film theorists have attempted to understand sensations of time that entail fracturing the temporal homogeneity of the image has been by turning to Roland Barthes’ concept of the photographic punctum and looking for cinematic equivalents to the punctum’s temporal operations. This exploration of the idea of a cinematic punctum has been particularly important to ideas of cinephilia and has often revolved around the filmic image’s indexical claims. While the temporal breach and the sensation of time that it entails are by no means equivalent to the loved object in cinephilia (after all, the temporal breach is neither an accident, outside intentionality, nor is it random; rather it is a particular representation of time that can be located and analysed in terms of its textual operations and affective force), some of the discussions and debates that have taken place around the idea of cinephilia and the index are particularly useful for understanding the temporal breach and its form of spectatorial address. In the closing chapter of The Emergence of Cinematic Time, Doane takes issue with some of the ways in which cinema’s much touted demise has been both proclaimed and mourned in terms of the anticipated loss of a particular kind of relation between spectator and image, a relation which, she argues, has been understood as being premised on the material base of the filmic/photographic image. “A cinephilia that hinges upon the envisaged death of cinema,” she writes, “stipulates the death as that of the photographic base” (Doane, p. 230). Doane’s primary argument in The Emergence of Cinematic Time is that “an indexically ensured contingency played a major role in thinking about the cinema as the archival representation of time” (Doane, 229). “In the face of the abstraction and rationalisation of time, chance and the contingent are given the crucial ideological role of representing an outside, of suggesting that time is still allied with the free and the indeterminable. Contingency and ephemerality are produced as graspable and representable, but nevertheless antisystematic” (Doane, p. 230). The two key problems for Doane with some of the more familiar ideas of cinephilia are that they tend to neglect contingency’s role in the organisation of modern time and that they often overlook the variety of ways that the moving image can proffer the possibility of contingency. Doane signals the ongoing significance of contingency and chance in other moving image forms that are not based in the photographic image by arguing that this investment in (and promise of) the contingent is not dependent upon the indexicality of the photographic image and its claims to inscribing time itself. But of particular importance here is her foregrounding of the importance of the deictic in the index – the act of pointing, or what we could also call a summoning of the spectator.

Doane’s argument here is useful for thinking about how the sensation of time that characterises the temporal breach may operate as a form of spectatorial address, for the breach could certainly be understood as having a deictic component. But at the same time, the way that she conceives of cinematic time through the interplay of contingency and a rationalization of time also at times seems to preclude looking at how the forms of temporal disjunction and play available to the moving image might resonate with particular forms of social and historical experience. By titling this paper “the lure of the breach” I want to complicate and supplement Doane’s eloquent and astute analysis of what she calls the “lure of contingency” and its role in the emergence of cinematic time. To be able to address the ways that representations and sensations of time can express forms of social and cultural experience and make them recognisable and transmissible we need to be able to look more closely at both the textual operations of time and at the importance of sensations of time in spectatorship.

It is here that the idea of collaborative expectancies in time becomes particularly useful. For the sensation of time that the temporal breach produces – the sensation of being untimely, or what Ralph Ellison famously described as being never quite on the beat – results from the thwarting of expectancies in time, and in the process it seems to perform a different, and unexpected, collaboration with the spectator. The temporal breach and the sensation of time that it entails performs a peculiar kind of recognition of the spectator, addressing – and recognising – the spectator in his/her invisibility and untimeliness. In her chapter on Silverlake Life, Phelan writes: “Insofar as Silverlake Life documents the inability to be seen, to have a queer gaze returned, it comes close to creating a space for lesbian interpellation” (Phelan, p. 165). To what extent might the cinema of invisibility or of the unseen that the temporal breach summons also operate as a cinema for the unseen? If we understand such forms of dissolving cinematic vision as both resulting from particular representations of time (the breach as fracturing the sense of unity between the temporalities of the apparatus, of reception, and of the diegesis) and as producing particular sensations of time, then we could argue that one of the primary things that the temporal breach does, as a form of spectatorial address, is “recognise” the spectator as glaringly, ecstatically, or terrifyingly, invisible. The temporal breach or filmic caesura can operate as invisibility’s “time signature,” offering something like the rendering audible of invisibility that Ellison’s narrator hears in his Armstrong recording.[6]  In this respect the temporal breach would seem to enable what Dana Luciano has described as “the potentiality of a minoritarian angle of vision,” and does so through a particular representation and sensation of time (Luciano, p. 253). [7]

A version of this paper was presented for the Film and Television Studies division at Monash University and I would like to thank the audience at this talk for their feedback and Dr Therese Davis for the invitation.

Works Cited
Mary Ann Doane, The Emergence of Cinematic Time (Cambridge and London: Harvard University Press, 2002).
Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man (London and New York: Penguin, 1962).
Dana Luciano, “Coming around again: the queer momentum of Far from Heaven,” GLQ 13:2-3 (2007).
Peggy Phelan, “Infected Eyes: Dying Man with a Movie Camera, Silverlake Life: The View from Here,” Mourning Sex: Performing Public Memories (London and New York: Routledge, 1997).
Michael Shapiro, Cinematic Political Thought: Narrating Race, Nation and Gender (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1999).


[1]  Steven Feld and Charles Keil, Music Grooves (Chicago: Chicago University Press, 1994), chapter 4. For a dynamic discussion of this concept, see Alexander Weheliye’s book Phonographies: Grooves in Sonic Afro-Modernity (Durham and London: Duke University Press, 2005), 81.
[2] Shapiro’s focus in this chapter is on “the time-value relationships of the present, with particular reference to how these relationships are articulated in the movement and containment of black bodies.” While these questions are primarily explored in relation to Barry Lyndon (Stanley Kubrick, 1975) and Hoop Dreams (Steve James, 1994), his discussion of the New York Times passage is used to lay the conceptual foundations for much of his argument. In these few short lines many of Shapiro’s key concerns are raised: the time-value of a body’s movement (Agnew’s slow run being at odds with the temporal economy of the television sports highlights program) and the ways that what Paul Virilio has called modernity’s “obligation to mobility” is played out on black bodies in the US. Shapiro, 10-11.
[3] As Shapiro puts it, “unregulated moves in the game by players are affected by the future publicity of the game,” 19.
[4] See Eduardo Cadava, Words of Light: Theses on the Photography of History (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1997) for a detailed discussion of Benjamin’s concept of the caesura and the ways that he conceives of the caesura through and in relation to the photograph. Cadava does not explore the ways that Benjamin’s caesura can be understood in relation to film, avoiding, perhaps, the problem of how to conceptualise the caesura’s form of arrest in the moving image.
[5] “Visibility is a complex system of permission and prohibition, of presence and absence, punctuated alternately by apparitions and hysterical blindness.” Laura Kipnis, “Feminism: The Political Conscience of Postmodernism?” in Universal Abandon? The Politics of Postmodernism ed. Andrew Ross, 149-166 (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1988), 158. This passage is also cited in Avery Gordon, Ghostly Matters: Haunting and the Sociological Imagination (London and Minneapolis: Minnesota University Press, 1997), 15.
[6] In his book The Black Atlantic: Modernity and Double Consciousness Paul Gilroy uses the term time signature to refer to the temporal structure of a social practice or cultural form and it is one of the means through which Gilroy examines carious kinds of memorative practices in black Atlantic cultures and the politics of time they entail. See The Black Atlantic: Modernity and Double Consciousness (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard UP, 1993).
[7] Dana Luciano, “Coming around again: the queer momentum of Far from Heaven,” GLQ 13:2-3 (2007), 253.

Created on: Sunday, 9 December 2007

About the Author

Jodi Brooks

About the Authors

Jodi Brooks

Dr Jodi Brooks is Senior Lecturer in the School of English, Media and Performing Arts at University of New South Wales. Her essays have appeared in Screen, Continuum and Senses of Cinema.View all posts by Jodi Brooks →