How does Arriving Feel? Modulating a Cinematic Sense of Commonality
Lehmann, Hauke – 2017
The essay begins by identifying basic problems in current research on so-called “Turkish-German cinema.” It argues that current research is dominated by a representational understanding of the cinematic image which produces false conclusions regarding the relation between cinematic images and social reality, and that “Turkish-German cinema” has primarily been treated as a separate genre without due problematizing or concrete grounding in theory. Proceeding from this diagnosis, the essay develops a conceptual perspective which aims at theoretically realigning the relation between migration discourses and audiovisual media production. This project works along two lines: the methodological line aims at closely analyzing cinematic form with regard to its expressive dimension, while the theoretical line understands cinematic images as appropriations of globally circulating forms and patterns. This dimension of audiovisual discursivity has to be reconstructed analytically before films can be read as negotiations of cultural identity. These methodological and theoretical considerations are applied through the close analysis of the film Almanya – Welcome to Germany.