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Title: The return of the Real in postmillennial Italy : Italian Lacanianism and new Realist trends
Author: Di Gregorio, Luca
ISNI:       0000 0004 6423 8974
Awarding Body: University of Kent
Current Institution: University of Kent
Date of Award: 2017
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In this thesis, I identify a coherent and consistent Italian cultural phenomenon which I call the 'return of the Real'. I claim that this is characterised primarily, but not exclusively, by two aspects: a resurgence of interest by scholars and clinicians in Lacan's teachings (Italian Lacanianism), especially his notion of the 'Real'; and a return of realist trends in the arts, broadly understood, and in the media. I contend that contemporary Italian Lacanianism distinguishes itself from its international counterparts for two reasons: it focuses particularly on Lacan's notion of the Real qua jouissance, and it interweaves clinical work, socio-political criticism, and aesthetic theories. Hence, the notion of the Real, as received by contemporary Italian Lacanians, enables us to understand early twenty-first-century Italian realist trends not only in aesthetic terms, but also as an ethical undertaking, a form of postmodern (Antonello and Mussgnug, 2009) or, better still, postmillennial impegno. I contend that, according to contemporary Italian Lacanianism, the issue at stake in postmillennial realist art is not so much the depiction of reality or its manipulation, but rather the Real of the untamed and pervasive jouissance that no longer encounter limits. The Real qua jouissance as the leitmotiv of postmillennial Italian artistic production, and a realist aesthetic understood as an ethical undertaking are epitomised in the three case studies closely analysed in my thesis: the documentary Videocracy - Basta apparire (Gandini, 2009); the film Reality (Garrone, 2012); and the television series In Treatment (Costanzo, 2013-2016). In this thesis, I thus address the 'return of the Real' as a broad cultural phenomenon, through the analysis of its theoretical background (i.e. contemporary Italian Lacanianism and the Lacanian notion of the Real), and its emergence in the new realist trends of postmillennial Italy.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available