Voyage(s) to Sarajevo: Jean-Luc Godard and the Image of War

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This essay discusses Jean-Luc Godard’s artistic response to both the Bosnian War (1992-95) and the politics of its media representations. For Godard, the reluctance of Europe’s advanced liberal democracies to intervene meaningfully in Bosnia – their insistence that 'humanitarianism' rather than protective intervention was the order of the day – was tantamount to supporting Serbian fascism, and – a fortiori – regressing to a policy of appeasement reminiscent of the days of the Munich Agreement. Although Godard's stance set him against some of his former compatriots on the left, speculating on his ideological motivations is beside the point. Rather, it is is in his filmmaking, in his vision of cinema, and how it relates to other histories of the image, that Godard’s sensibility can be most keenly felt and understood. As the essay points out, even his recent contribution to Jean-Michel Frodon's compilation film, Bridges of Sarajevo/Les ponts de Sarajevo (2014, 114 mn.), persists in posing questions about how the past continues to shape the present, and how Sarajevo and its contemporary history still delineates the identity of Europe. 
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPost-Conflict Performance, Film and Visual Arts: Cities of Memory
EditorsDes O'Rawe, Mark Phelan
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
ISBN (Print)9781137439543
Publication statusPublished - 01 Sep 2016

Publication series

NameContemporary Performance InterActions


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