Iconic Turns

Nation and Religion in Eastern European Cinema since 1989


After the epochal turn of 1989 a new wave of movies dealing with the complex entanglement of religious and national identity has emerged in the eastern part of Europe. There has been plenty of evidence for a return of nationalism, while the predicated "return of religion(s)" is envisaged on a larger scale as a global phenomenon. The book suggests that in the wake of the historical turns of 1989, an "iconic turn" has taken place in Eastern Europe – in the form of a renewed cinematic commitment to make sense of the world in religious and/or national terms. "Iconic Turns" combines theoretical articles on the subject with case studies, bringing together researchers from different national backgrounds and disciplines, such as history, literary and film studies.

Contributors include: Eva Binder, Jan Čulík, Liliya Berezhnaya, Christian Schmitt, Hans-Joachim Schlegel, Maren Röger, Mirosław Przylipiak, Stephen Norris, John-Paul Himka, Maria Falina, and Natascha Drubek.

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Pages: 251–256
Liliya Berezhnaya is a research fellow at the University of Münster in the Cluster of Excellence “Religion and Politics.” She earned her MA degree from Moscow State University, and her MA and PhD in history from the Central European University, Budapest. Her most recent book, "Death and the Afterlife in Early Modern Ukrainian Culture," is currently in production at Harrasowitz Verlag, as well as "Catalog of the Ukrainian Last Judgment Images" (Harvard UP), co-written with John-Paul Himka.

Christian Schmitt is a research fellow at the University of Münster in the Cluster of Excellence “Religion and Politics.” He studied German, Dutch, and History in Münster, Leiden, and Amsterdam. His publications include "Kinopathos: Große Gefühle im Gegenwartsfilm" (Bertz +Fischer, 2009). His current research project focuses on notions of community in Adalbert Stifter’s writings.
Notes on Contributors
Notes on Transliteration

Liliya Berezhnaya and Christian Schmitt

Hans-Joachim Schlegel
Religion and Politics in Soviet and Eastern European Cinema: A Historical Survey

Steven Norris
Blessed Films: The Russian Orthodox Church and Patriotic Culture in the 2000s

Natascha Drubek
Russian Film Premieres in 2010/11: Sacralizing National History and Nationalizing Religion

Liliya Berezhnaya
Longing for the Empire: State and Orthodox Church in Russian Religious Films

John-Paul Himka
A Cinematic Churchman: Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky in Oles Yanchuk’s Vladyka Andrey

Eva Binder
Rethinking History: Heroes, Saints and Martyrs in Contemporary Russian Cinema

Jan Čulík
The Godless Czechs? Cinema, Religion and Czech National Identity

Christian Schmitt
Beyond the Surface, Beneath the Skin: Immanence and Transcendence in Györgi Pálfi’s Films

Maren Röger
Narrating the Shoah in Poland: Post-1989 Movies about Polish-Jewish Relations in Times of German Extermination Politics

Mirosław Przylipiak
Memory, National Identity, and the Cross: Polish Documentary Films about the Smolensk Plane Crash

Maria Falina
Religion Visible and Invisible: The Case of Post-Yugoslav Anti-War Films

All those interested in East European history, film, literary, and Slavic studies.The book might also appeal to a broader audience interested in nationalism, religious, memory, and media studies.
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