Philip Watts, Associate Professor of French, Department Chair, Columbia University
Thoughts on Giorgio Agamben's Remnants of Auschwitz: The Witness and the Archive
Jeffrey Mehlman, Professor of French, Department of Romance Studies, College of Arts and Sciences, Boston University
Wednesday, April 13
Humphrey Forum, Humphrey Center
There has been much controversy about French filmmaker Jean-Luc Godard's relation to the Jews and the Holocaust. Godard was recently accused of anti-Semitism. Philip Watts will return to this recent affair by focusing on Godard's filmic representation of WWII, the Middle East conflict and the Holocaust.
How has the Holocaust figured in Godard's films since his earliest days as a filmmaker of the New Wave? What role has the memory of the Holocaust played in Godard's radical politics? What is the relation between the representation of the Holocaust in his films and his anti-Zionism? Do Godard's films somehow distort the memory of the Holocaust? Watts will tackle these questions by revisiting three Godard's films: "A Married Woman" (1964), "Ici et ailleurs" (1975) and "In Praise of Love "(2001) to examine Godard's problematic construction of the memory of the Second World War and of the Holocaust in particular.
Philip Watts, Associate Professor of French, Department Chair, Columbia University, received his BA at the University of California, Santa Barbara in 1982 and his PhD from Columbia University in 1991. His research and teaching focuses on 20th-century French literature and film and the relation between politics and aesthetics.