Alexander Kluge: News from Ideological Antiquity

November 9–November 26, 2010

Tuesday, November 9th, 7pm at Goethe-Institut Wyoming Building, 5 East 3rd Street
Sunday, November 21st at e-flux, 41 Essex Street and Ludlow 38, 38 Ludlow Street, New York 10002, 7pm
Friday, November 26th at 16 beaver, 16 Beaver Street 4th Floor New York, 10004, 7pm

All screenings are free, film with english subtitles

Alexander Kluge’s News from Ideological Antiquity: Marx–Eisenstein–Capital (2008) In collaboration with Platform for Pedagogy, 16 beaver, e-flux and Ludlow 38, Red Channels will be hosting a screening of Alexander Kluge’s film News from Ideological Antiquity: Marx–Eisenstein–Capital in three parts, over three days and at three different locations.

Alexander Kluge’s News from Ideological Antiquity: Marx–Eisenstein–Capital (2008) begins with Russian filmmaker Sergei Eisenstein’s ambitious but unrealized plan to combine Karl Marx’s Capital and James Joyce’s Ulysses. For over nine hours, the film expands in concentric circles as Kluge, his guests, interlocutors and monologists make associative links on a range of topics that start from a filmic discussion of Eisenstein’s notes. Kluge’s film is divided into three parts: I. Marx and Eisenstein in the Same House; II. All Things are Bewitched People; III. Paradoxes of Exchange Society. At several points in the film we get a sense of what Eisenstein had in mind with his project. At one point, Kluge shows a “pot of soup has become a water kettle, boiling away and whistling: the image recurs at several moments in the exposition (Eisenstein’s notes projected in graphics on the intertitles), in such a way that this plain object is ‘abstracted’ into the very symbol of energy. It boils impatiently, vehemently it demands to be used, to be harnessed, it is either the whistling signal for work, for work stoppage, for strikes, or else the motor-power of a whole factory, a machine for future production …” (Frederic Jameson in the New Left Review, July/August 2009). By insistence and repetition this banal object, a commodity, transforms into a larger-than-life symbol, and we start to get a sense of the full range of cognitive and material links this commodity has to the web of life that surrounds it.

Marty Kirchner on Alexander Kluge’s News from Ideological Antiquity: Marx–Eisenstein–Capital (2008) download PDF here