Katia Hay: Film, Reality and Repetition


In my paper I would like to analyse the different ways in which the problem of 'repetition' has been thematized in films and in philosophy. Some of the questions I would like to raise in this context include: To what extent is repetition (of the same) possible, i.e. to what extent is it even real? Can we really experience the same more than once? What is the role of our memory in this? And most importantly: is repetition something we desire, something desirable or something we fear? What is the relation between our desires and the idea of repetition and how does this relate to our experience of the world, and most importantly our experience of time?

In order to address these questions (in 20 min) I will focus on some passages from Schelling, Kierkegaard, Freud, Nietzsche and Deleuze and scenes from »Memento« (Nolan 2000), »Groundhog Day« (Ramis 1993), »The Shining« (Kubrick 1980) and »L ’ ann ée dernière à Marienbad« (Resnais 1961, script by Allain Robbe-Grillet). I will also use the analysis of the latter in relation to another text by Allain Robbe-Grillet – »La Reprise« – in order to introduce the distinction between what could be seen as the sterility of 'repetition' tout court and the (fruitful) process of resuming, re-writing, re-narrating and re-understanding.