Shadow play. The intelligence of melodrama

Josep Maria Català Domènech

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


    One of the most outstanding features of contemporary culture is the comeback of the emotional factor to the foreground. This implies an exacerbation of the emotions that can be comparable to melodrama. Beyond the tradition expressed in different media that eventually flowed into cinema, melodrama is now the device that permits us to discover the essential function that affections play in visual expressions, to which the body in motion is their essential vehicle. Melodrama has turned, then, into a symbolic form. In this sense, the contemporary documentary presents itself as the best lab to observe the postmodern prolongation of Aby Warburg's pathosformel, a concept enunciated to study images of emotion throughout History. Based on the body, the melodramatic gesture expands its meaning up to encompass all the field of the image transformed in an emotional landscape.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)13-28
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2018


    • Bodies
    • Emotions
    • Gesture
    • Melodrama
    • Melodramatic and oneiric documentary
    • Pathosformel
    • Performers
    • Vanguard


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