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Dr Lauri Kitsnik:War, Work and Witnessing: aesthetics and ideology in Shindō Kaneto’s cinema

  • Univeristy of Edinburgh David Hume Tower Room LG.08 (map)

Speaker: Dr Lauri Kitsnik (Sainsbury Institute)
Date:       Monday, April 3rd, 17:30-19:00
Venue:    David Hume Tower, LG.08




Shindō Kaneto (1912-2012) was a prolific Japanese film director noted for works such as Children of Hiroshima (1952), The Naked Island (1960) and Onibaba (1964). He maintained an active and uninterrupted career for over seventy years, perhaps the longest in the entire cinematic history. His films have been both praised and criticised for their strong leftist agenda when dealing with social issues such as crime, poverty, disease and discrimination. However, there is currently a lack of consensus as to whether his work displays enough thematic or stylistic unity to be evaluated in auteurist terms.

In this talk, by looking at Shindō’s works from different decades, I argue that his visual style underlined by excessive repetition effectively created a self-referencial system of cumulative images which offers insights into his worldview in both aesthetic and ideological terms.


Dr Lauri Kitsnik (MA Tokyo PhD Cantab) is Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Fellow at the Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures in Norwich. His interests include (but are not limited to) film history and theory, adaptation and screenwriting. His work has appeared in the Journal of Japanese and Korean CinemaJournal of Screenwriting and Women Screenwriters: An International Guide.