Dr Guido Kirsten is the PI of the Emmy Noether Research Group “Cinematic Discourses of Deprivation: Analysing the Representation of Precarity and Exclusion in European Fiction Film and Documentary” at the Film University Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF (Potsdam). His research interests include questions of representation and audio-visual discourse and narration, questions of proximity and distance in cinema, and the history of film and film theory. He is the author of Filmischer Realismus (2013), co-editor of Christian Metz and the Codes of Cinema: Film Semiology and Beyond (Amsterdam University Press, 2018; with Margrit Tröhler), and editor of Étienne Souriau’s collected film-related writings, Das filmische Universum: Schriften zur Ästhetik des Kinos (Fink, 2020). Since 2007 he has been an editor for the film and television studies journal Montage AV, for which he co-edited issues on André Bazin (2009), the sociology of film in French filmology (2010), film and politics (2014), Roland Barthes’ film-related writings (2015), new film distribution (streaming and BitTorrent; 2017), and questions of proximity and distance (2019).
Kirsten’s research project deals with recurring patterns of the experience of poverty and precariousness in developed industrial countries from the mid-19th century to the present. In analysing these patterns, it draws from source material provided by feature films and documentaries, photographs, and sociographic and autobiographical literature. In each case, patterns of perception and experiences of time and space are investigated. Questions of legitimacy, invisibility and shame; questions of cyclical and progressive time structures, amorphous duration, and time stress ; as well as questions of social segregation and spatial narrowness play important roles here. The project aims to broaden and deepen the understanding of experiences of poverty through a media studies view of cultural products, testimonies of those affected and corresponding analyses, and thus also to open up new thematic fields, new perspectives, and new analytical instruments for film and media studies.