Identification Desire and Its Cinematic Arena
20 Dispositive. Apparatus. Instrumentality
I am now going to introduce three terms–termini technici–not, or not quite, used in their accustomed meaning. Rather, they will be used as derivations of more conventional usage. It will prove expedient to understand that both definition and application of these terms, though in part traceable to certain concepts and authors, are here reconfigured according to a new framework that may owe some components to previous usage but partly ascribes unfamiliar meaning to those words and their relations among each other. It is not a matter of entirely new definitions but results from the combination and the interactions of the concepts. At the basis is a simple-seeming question: what–actually and precisely–is it that makes me identify with a role (a cinematic personage), how can the “technical” aspects of this psychological problem best be described?
The process to envisage is the following. You are watching a movie, something exterior to your person, something artificial, then, although that doesn’t impair your sensory perception. Basically it is an object, not part of the natural/cultural universe, but made for your (and many others’) entertainment (the respective realization of which will never quite cease to take leave of the outer regions of your apprehension). You are an observer, you just regard, without any possibility of directly interfering. (Interactive video games seem to derive their attractiveness from the possibility of doing exactly that: co-determining what is going to happen and hence the ultimate outcome. But we have already...