New Materialist Spectatorship: The Moving-Image-Body, the Mockumentary and a New Image of Thought
In this article I propose to rethink spectatorship as analytic category within cinema studies. Through an engagement with new materialist theory I shift the conversation from the locked positions of spectator and text towards an acknowledgement of the spectatorial event as a becoming increased or decreased in capacity to affect and be affected. By doing so I argue that what is effectuated in the event of spectating is in fact the production of a certain body, what I call a moving-image-body. This, I claim, develops in connection with different so-called spectatorial contracts, contracts that produce different agential conditions. An examination of some examples from the realm of the mockumentary, notably I’m Still Here (Affleck, 2010), leads me to discuss the core of the issue as one pertaining to the potential production of new realities, and my methodological proposal as a way towards mapping, not what the event of spectating means, but rather what it does.
Spectatorship, Mockumentary, New Materialism, Genre theory, Audiovisual Event.