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Harrington, Louise (2016) '‘Conflict cinema’ and hostile space in Northern Ireland and Palestine.' Text: Journal of writing and writing courses, 34. pp. 1-15.

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This article is concerned with narratives of ethno-religious conflict depicted in a genre I term ‘conflict cinema’. The two films under discussion, ’71 and Paradise Now, are largely set, respectively, in the cities of Belfast in Northern Ireland and Nablus in Palestine and represent the divisions and violent tension between enemy factions there. The intersection of the landscape of the conflicts and the bodies of the male protagonists who must negotiate them emphasizes the centrality of physically being ‘in place’ or ‘out of place’ to ‘conflict cinema’. The soldier/colonizer Gary Hook in ’71 and the freedom fighters/terrorists Said and Khaled in Paradise Now travel through the enduring battlegrounds of their divided and politically unstable societies. Against the backdrop of ethno-religious conflict, both films focus on the ideal militant body that must be a machine or an automaton. I argue that through the screenwriters’ and filmmakers’ depiction of these bodies’ negotiations of conflict space, or in other words, the interface between the body and the unstable, urban conflict zone, ‘conflict cinema’ upsets overdetermined notions of the male militant body, thus manifesting the paradox of the dehumanised body that is also innately human.

Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: Special Issue 'Writing and illustrating interdisciplinary research'eds Simon Dwyer, Rachel Franks, Monica Galassi and Kirsten Thorpe
SOAS Departments & Centres: Legacy Departments > Faculty of Languages and Cultures > Department of the Languages and Cultures of South Asia
ISSN: 13279556
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 11 Aug 2016 09:52

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