School of Languages and Global Studies Seminar with Cinema Studies Assoc. Prof. Sergio Rigoletto: "Universality, Spectrality and Difference in Call Me by Your Name"

Feb 12, 2:00 pm

The CAS School of Languages and Global Studies Seminar presents: Sergio Rigoletto, (Cinema Studies and Romance Languages), "Universality, Spectrality and Difference in Call Me by Your Name"

  • Friday, February 12 at 2:00pm to 3:00pm
  • Virtual Event

Ever since Call Me By Your Name premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, a common response to the film has been to celebrate it as a powerful universal story. Exploring some of the distinctive ways in which the film may allow this type of response, the paper asks whether Call Me By Your Name epitomizes a post-political moment for the cinema that deals with LGBTQ lives, one in which the exclusionary trap of identity politics gets replaced by the universal aspiration to address everybody. This paper seeks to expose and make sense of the lingering (homophobic) specters that, according to several critics, have been banished from the dreamy arcadia of the Italian villa in which the love between Elio and Oliver blossoms. It will show that these specters are present in the form of a strange, eerie affect that haunts the film. By exploring the impact of this affect on the conditions of plausibility of the story, the paper will demonstrate that CMBYN is indeed a universal story not despite but because of the function and significance of homosexuality within the film.

Sergio Rigoletto holds a PhD from the University of Reading, UK. He is Associate Professor of Cinema Studies and Italian, with a joint appointment in the departments of Cinema Studies and Romance Languages. His research explores the relation between social change and media aesthetics (especially cinema and TV). He has written extensively on queer cinemas, film stardom and performance, international television, film costume, and many aspects of Italian cinema. He is the author of two monographs:

He has co-edited a book entitled Popular Italian Cinema (Palgrave: 2013) and is currently working on two book projects: a monograph on actress Anna Magnani and a volume provisionally titled Queer from the South: Film Video Art and Media Activism in the Mediterranean.