Coming to blows with the audience

Tania Castellano San Jacinto


Starting with Dadaism, which strikes the public’s moral standing, and above all with a certain kind of cinema which, according to Walter Benjamin, can punch the spectator awake, this article studies several different kinds of impact that contemporary art exerts. In this context, the possibility of an “acceptable shock” and an “unacceptable shock” is put forward, and, within both of these categories, the effectiveness of coming to blows with the audience is studied from the perspective of various different authors. On the other side of all this is the spectator abused by excess –whose modern antecedent we have situated in Georg Simmel’s blasé figure-, and another who is perhaps shaken up by the world before him, which would imply political mobilisation through art.

Palabras clave

coming to blows, shock, blasé, Benjamin, contemporary art

Texto completo:

PDF (English)


Adorno, T. W. and Horkheimer, M. (2002). Dialectic of Enlightenment. Standford, Standford University Press.

Aitken D. (2006). Broken Screen. 26 Conversations with Doug Aitken. Expanding the Image, Breaking the Narrative. Nueva York, D.A.P./Distributed Art Publishers.

Barthes, R. (1982). L’obvie et l’obtus. Essais critiques III. Paris, Seuil.

Beller, J. (1994). “Cinema, Capital of the Twentieth Century”, in Postmodern Culture, vol. 4, nº3. Available at:

Benjamin, W. (1979). One Way Street and Other Writings. London, NLB.

Benjamin, W. (1990a). Gesammelte Schriften. I, vol. 2. Frankfurt am Main, Suhrkamp.

Benjamin, W. (1990b). Gesammelte Schriften. I, vol. 3. Frankfurt am Main, Suhrkamp.

Benjamin, W. (2002). Selected Writings. Volume 3. 1935-1938. Massachusetts and London, The Belnap Press of Harvard University Press.

Benjamin, W. (2003). Selected Writings. Volume 4. 1938-1940. Massachusetts and London, The Belnap Press of Harvard University Press.

Benjamin, W. (2008). The Work of Art in the Age of its Technological Reproducibility, and Other Writings on Media. Massachusetts and London, The Belnap Press of Harvard University Press.

Brill, D. (2010). Shock and the Senseless in Dada and Fluxus. Hanover, NH (EEUU), Dartmouth College Press/University Press of New England.

Conrad, T. (1978, March). “Diegesis and Violence in Narrativity”, in Phos. Center for Media Study Journal, vol 1, nº1, pp. 1-5.

Deleuze, G. (1997). The Time-Image. Minneapolis, University of Minnesota Press.

Deleuze, G. y Guattari, F. (1987). A Thousand Plateaus. Capitalism and Schizophrenia. Minneapolis/London, University of Minnesota press.

Déotte, (2004). L’époque des appareils. París, Lignes & Manifestos.

Klein, N. (2008). The Shock Doctrine. The Rise of Disaster Capitalism. New York, Picador.

Kubelka, P. (2000). “Interview with Peter Kubelka”, interview with Mekas, J. in Sitney P. A. (ed.), Film Culture Reader (pp. 285-299). New York, Cooper Square Press.

Kuh, K. (1965, 29th May). “A Jaded Glance at Shock Art”, in Saturday Review, p. 29.

McLuhan, M. (1994). Understanding Media. The Extensions of Man. Cambridge and London, The MIT Press.

Michaud, P. A. (2006). Sketches. Histoire de l’art, cinema. París, Kargo & Éclat.

Molina, M. (2008). “La ‘metamorfosis de la percepción’ y dos de sus exponentes: Walter Benjamin y Dziga Vertov”, en Revista de Filosofía, nº 60, pp. 45-57.

Schaefer, C. (2003). Bored to Distraction. Cinema of Excess in End-of-the-Century. Mexico and Spain. Nueva York, State University of New York.

Virilio, P. (1994). The Vision Machine. London, British Film Institute and Bloomington (IN), Indiana University Press.

Virilio, P. (2004). Art and Fear. London and New York, Continuum.

Wees, W. C. (1992). Light Moving in Time. Studies in the Visual Aesthetics of Avant-Garde Film. Berkeley, University of California Press.

Enlaces refback

  • No hay ningún enlace refback.

Licencia de Creative Commons
Este obra está bajo una licencia de Creative Commons Reconocimiento-NoComercial-SinObraDerivada 4.0 Internacional.


Re-visiones - ISSN 2143-0040
HAR2013-43016-P I+D Visualidades críticas, reescritura de las narrativas a través de las imágenes