The face as technology
New Formations - ISSN 0950-2378
Volume 2018 Number 93
The face as technology
Zara Dinnen, Sam McBean, pages -
In this article, we contribute to thinking about the emergence of the face in digital culture. Building on work in the fields of art history, cinema studies, and surveillance studies, which have long established a technological interest in the human face, we move this critical discourse on by locating in contemporary popular culture, and Hollywood narrative cinema in particular, anxieties about, and play with, the face as a new kind of digital object. By studying the face as a digital object away from its primary sites of recognition – online, in CCTV imagery, in identification documents – we encounter in narrative cinema the face as a story. In particular, the recent films of Scarlett Johansson tell stories about the face as made by and in relation to digital technology, but also in relation to discourses of celebrity, whiteness, and femininity. Johansson’s face is a generative filmic object with which to interrogate the normative conditions of the face in contemporary digital culture. It is her face that becomes the computer in Lucy (dir. Luc Besson, 2014), her face that is the alien black sheen of Under the Skin (dir. Jonathan Glazer, 2013), and her face that is the absent signified in her (dir. Spike Jonze, 2013). Focusing on Johansson’s films enables us to think together the interface-object of celebrity in the contemporary, the technological face of digital cinema, and importantly, the face as primarily a gendered and raced technology in the making.
SORRY - you are not registered as being permitted online access to the full text of this article
You have the following options:
- If you are viewing this via an institution or academic library you can ask that your institution takes out a Subscription to this journal.
- If you already have a Personal Subscription please login below
Forgotten your username / password? Click here to locate
- Purchase an annual Personal Subscription
PRINT + DIGITAL personal subscription (£45 / year)
DIGITAL personal subscription (£30 / year)
A Personal Subscription provides immediate access not only to the single article you are seeking, but also to all past and future articles in this journal up to the expiry of your annual (calendar year) subscription.
- Purchase immediate access to this single article (UK£7.00) - Buy article Coming Soon
To cite this article
Zara Dinnen, Sam McBean (2018) The face as technology, New Formations, 2018(93), -