By Alessia Ricciardi
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Extra info for After la dolce vita : a cultural prehistory of Berlusconi's Italy
38 The exuberant aerial tracking shots of the lead helicopter hauling its freight through the sky over Rome suggest, if anything, the ascendancy of human technology over the religious, rather than any portentous return of the spiritual. ”40 At the same time, the prologue establishes as a theme the complicity of modern technology with consumerist mass media. The early modernist enthusiasm for technology thus is tempered by a more critical view of the symbiosis between telecommunications and journalism, a linkage that may be read as one symptom of a culture already on its way toward the crisis point of late capitalism.
All you enjoy so much . . is just a waste . . a convenient excuse to do whatever you like. . I am afraid you are becoming an endearing buffoon, my dear. . 51 That this episode was not included in the finished film might be explained in various ways, but the chief suggestion I wish to make is that it is redundant. We have already observed Steiner’s function in the narrative as a kind of substitute for Marcello’s potential suicide. A more analytic or nuanced representation of the defeat of his residual intellectual ambition would have been superfluous, particularly given the film’s interest in mapping the new cultural and intellectual territory that lies beyond modernism.
That Fellini cast the youthful and the aged Mastroianni in both roles accentuates the genealogical connection between the journalist of La dolce vita and the tap dancer of Ginger and Fred. Sweetness Fellini may be said to have contributed, if involuntarily, to the phenomenon of the marketing of Italian culture in the 1960s inasmuch as the worldwide success of La dolce vita itself appeared to signal the sweet potential of a cosmopolitan consumerism. By the time of his last productions, however, Fellini was determined not to remain an accomplice in the metamorphosis of Italian culture.
After la dolce vita : a cultural prehistory of Berlusconi's Italy by Alessia Ricciardi