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Time and Space in Contemporary Greek-Cypriot Cinema

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Lisa Socrates

Why does the 1974 war in Cyprus remain so dominant in Greek-Cypriot cinema? How has this event shaped the imagination of contemporary filmmakers, and how might one define the new national cinema that has emerged as a result? This book explores such questions by analysing a range of Greek-Cypriot films that have hitherto received little or no critical discussion.
The book adopts a predominantly conceptual approach, situating contemporary Greek-Cypriot cinema within a specific cultural and national context. Drawing on the work of the French philosopher Gilles Deleuze, and particularly his theories of time and space, the author explores ways in which Greek-Cypriot directors invent new forms of imagery as a way of dealing with the crisis of history, the burden of memory and the dislocation of the island’s abandoned spaces.
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Chapter 7: The Border, Movement and Chronotopic-Images

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CHAPTER 7

The Border, Movement and Chronotopic-Images

Time, as it were, thickens, takes on flesh, becomes artistically visible; likewise, space becomes charged and responsive to the movements of time, plot and history. This intersection of axes and fusion of indicators characterizes the artistic chronotope.1

— M. M. BAKHTIN

This chapter turns to the new dynamic between real time and real spaces precipitated by changes in the political climate after 2003. Consequently, the new cinematic images which I explore as chronotopic-images, distinguishes them from the recollection and time-images already examined. ‘Chronos’ is the Greek word for time and ‘topos’ translates from the Greek to mean ‘place’. Therefore, a chronotopic-image is a time-space image, expressing a particular relationship between time and place or spaces. In Greek-Cypriot cinema there are residual elements of time in some of the films analysed in this chapter, whilst attention is given to the new direction represented by films that create space-time images. In the context of this cinema, I wish to apply the term ‘chronotopic-image’ to include the entire trajectory of post-1974 cinema that has created recollection-images and reached its crisis with the time-image, before creating new images. Therefore, it is a feature of the chronotopic-image to recognize ← 217 | 218 → the uncompromising presence of time as it attempts to introduce movement back in the image.

In the quotation above, by the Russian writer and literary critic M. M. Bakhtin, the description of a new relationship...

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