Cinema, Cultural Politics, and Transnationalism in the Marcos-Brocka Philippines

Rolando B. Tolentino


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Cinema, Cultural Politics, and Transnationalism in the Marcos-Brocka Philippines
Using the body of works of Filipino filmmaker Lino Brocka, the book examines the relations between cinema, cultural politics, and transnationalism in the Philippines. It analyzes issues of national and Third World cinemas, as problematized in Philippine cinema. Using the tropes of the city, family, body, and sexuality, the book explores the junctures in which the nation is contested. The focus of the study is on Marcos’s nation building, and how his efforts to modernize the nation continue to reverberate in subsequent national administrations. The study is important because Brocka’s filmic engagement and critique of the Marcos politics provide the condition of possibility that allows for the dictatorship to cohere and fragment, and for 1970s and 1980s Philippine cinema to be an important receptacle and symptom of negotiations with the dictatorship, the latter allowing for the foregrounding of subversions to the state and its order. A cultural analysis of the contestation for the imagery of nation, the “nation-space,” foregrounds an impasse to the contemporary cultural turn, where culture can be integral toward the assertion of freedom in the worsening weight of intensifying neoliberalism in the historic and everyday struggle.

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