Shaviro gets violent

Steve Shaviro never fails to deliver the goods on David Cronenberg. Here’s a snippet from his excellent review of A History of Violence:

The result is that A History of Violence offers us a kind of spookily abstract modeling of cultural formations: of American fantasies about family, the good life, violence, empowerment, and self-reinvention: and in particular of how these participate in the construction of masculinity. This is very different from exploring the disintegration of masculinity — or of American culture, for that matter — from the inside. I call this ‘abstract modeling’ not just because Cronenberg’s presentation is so distanced and subtractive, but also because in a very real sense the abstraction is all that there is: the “inside? — something more personal and subjective, that would give the abstraction existential density and individual quirkiness and variability — simply doesn’t exist. This is Cronenberg’s version of postmodern flatness: the depths do not exist, everything is visible and apparent.

By the way: a great interview with Cronenberg can be found at (where else??).


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