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The electronic version of Estetika: The Central European Journal of Aesthetics is available at: www.ceeol.com

2/2008

XLV (New Series: I)
Issued: 15th November 2008
Biannual
Founded: 1964
Re-established as an international journal: 2008
ISSN: 0014 –1291
Language: English, German

Eisenstein’s Das Kapital: Attempting a New Genre

http://aesthetics.ff.cuni.cz/archive/219/eisenteins-das-kapital-attempting-a-new-genre

 

The article focuses on the Russian film director Sergei M. Eisenstein’s intention to make a film of Marx’s Das Kapital according to its dialectical method, rather than its content. Eisenstein tried to find an appropriate method of visual expression with his own montage dialectics. The first part of the article analyzes Eisenstein’s intention to make the adaptation, considered in the historical context of interpretations of Marx’s main work. The second part of the article considers Eisenstein’s plans for a cinematographic rendition of Das Kapital in an attempt to create a new, ‘individual’, historical style based on a single film. The visual realization of this work was meant as an attempt to transform Marx’s ironic writing style as political expression into a film paradigm. Another pertinent point in this context is the contiguity of Eisenstein’s intended approach to Marx’s text using some Russian cinematographic styles of the time, especially comedy, satire and slapstick.