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Summary

When many people hear "philosophy of film" they think "philosophy through film." That is, they think of work on the philosophical contributions made by film.  This middle category is home to work that explores the philosophy found in movies and philosophy done in conjunction with a film. It contains both philosophy in film and philosophy through film. The most common approach is that addressing a single film. Less common, some address the philosophy of a filmmaker. And, even less common, some work on the philosophical insights to be had from particular genres of film, such screwball comedy and the western.

Key works The special issue of the Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism on the philosophy of film (Smith & Wartenberg 2006) features several essays exploring the philosophic potential of film.  The exchange between Livingston 2006 and Smuts 2009 provides a good introduction to question, Can film do philosophy? Grau 2005 is an excellent example of philosophy through film.
Introductions Livingston 2010 provides an introduction to the area.
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  1. Diana Abad (2012). Groundhog Day and the Good Life. Film-Philosophy 16 (1):149-164.
    Normal 0 21 false false false MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 One of the most important questions of moral philosophy is what makes a life a good life. A good way of approaching this issue is to watch the film Groundhog Day which can teach us a lot about what a good life consists in - and what not. While currently there are subjective and objective theories contending against each other about what a good life is, namely hedonism and desire satisfaction theories on the (...)
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  2. Nathan Abrams (2012). Dis-)Continuities From "Within" the West. "A Double Set of Glasses": Stanley Kubrick and the Midrashic Mode of Interpretation. In Saër Maty Bâ & Will Higbee (eds.), De-Westernizing Film Studies. Routledge.
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  3. John Adams (2010). Reviews Cinema, Philosophy, Bergman: On Film as Philosophy . By Paisley Livingston. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2005, £32.50. [REVIEW] Philosophy 85 (3):409-413.
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  4. Ian Aitken (2009). What is There Really in the World?" Forms of Theory, Evidence and Truth in Fahrenheit 9/11: A Philosophical and Intuitionist Realist Approach. [REVIEW] In Warren Buckland (ed.), Film Theory and Contemporary Hollywood Movies. Routledge.
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  5. Nathan Andersen (2005). Is Film the Alien Other to Philosophy?: Philosophy as Film in Mulhall's On Film. Film and Philosophy 9:1.
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  6. Nathan Andersen (2003). Is Film the Alien Other to Philosophy?, on Stephen Mulhall On Film. Film-Philosophy 7 (3).
    Stephen Mulhall _On Film_ London and New York: Routledge, 2002 ISBN 0-415-24796-9 142 pp.
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  7. J. H. Atchley (2008). Smoke and the Practice of Philosophy. Film and Philosophy 12:41.
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  8. Julian Baggini (2005). Alien Ways of Thinking. Film and Philosophy 9:12.
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  9. Julian Baggini (2003). Alien Ways of Thinking, on Stephen Mulhall On Film. Film-Philosophy 7 (3).
    Stephen Mulhall _On Film_ London and New York: Routledge, 2002 ISBN 0-415-24796-9 142 pp.
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  10. Susan Bainbrigge (2012). Les Belles Images? Mid-Life Crisis and Old Age in Tamara Jenkins' The Savages. In Jean-Pierre Boulé & Ursula Tidd (eds.), Existentialism and Contemporary Cinema: A Beauvoirian Perspective. Berghahn Books.
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  11. Jon Baldwin (2005). Have You Taken Your Rorschach Test?, on The Matrix and Philosophy: Welcome to the Desert of the Real, Edited by William Irwin. Film-Philosophy 9 (3).
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  12. Daniel Barnett (2007). If a Film Did Philosophy We Wouldn't Understand It. Film-Philosophy 11 (3):138-146.
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  13. Nancy Bauer (2011). The First Rule of Fight Club. In Thomas Wartenberg (ed.), Fight Club. Routledge.
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  14. Nancy Bauer (2005). Cogito Ergo Film: Plato, Descartes, and Fight Club. In Rupert Read & Jerry Goodenough (eds.), Film as Philosophy: Essays on Cinema After Wittgenstein and Cavell. Palgrave Macmillan.
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  15. Jeffrey Bell (1997). Thinking with Cinema: Deleuze and Film Theory. Film-Philosophy 1 (1).
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  16. Gary Bettinson (2009). Happy Together? : Generic Hybridity in 2046 and In the Mood for Love. In Warren Buckland (ed.), Puzzle Films: Complex Storytelling in Contemporary Cinema. Wiley-Blackwell. 167.
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  17. Thomas Bivins (2007). Loyalty, Utility, and Integrity in Casablanca: The Use of Film in Explicating Philosophical Disputes Concerning Utilitarianism. Journal of Mass Media Ethics 22 (2 & 3):132 – 150.
    Can concepts such as loyalty and integrity remain intrinsically valuable personal traits even as we devote ourselves to that which requires the loyalty in the first place (the greater good)? Does utilitarian deliberation rest on too extreme a notion of impartiality - one that focuses exclusively on the consequences of actions, leaving people, in the words of Bernard Williams, "mere faceless numbers"? Using the film Casablanca as an extended analogy, this article attempts to reconcile the concept of loyalty to a (...)
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  18. John Bleasdale (2005). Please Make More Films, on The Cinema of Terrence Malick: Poetic Visions of America , Edited by Hannah Patterso. Film-Philosophy 9 (4).
    _The Cinema of Terrence Malick: Poetic Visions of America_ Edited by Hannah Patterson London: Wallflower Press, 2003 ISBN 1-903364-75-2 195 pp.
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  19. Jean-Pierre Boulé (2012). Claire Denis's Chocolat and the Politics of Desire. In Jean-Pierre Boulé & Ursula Tidd (eds.), Existentialism and Contemporary Cinema: A Beauvoirian Perspective. Berghahn Books.
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  20. Jean-Pierre Boulé (2011). Cédric Klapisch's The Spanish Apartment and Russian Dolls in Nausea's Mirror. In Jean-Pierre Boulé & Enda McCaffrey (eds.), Existentialism and Contemporary Cinema: A Sartrean Perspective. Berghahn Books.
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  21. Jean-Pierre Boulé & Enda McCaffrey (eds.) (2011). Existentialism and Contemporary Cinema: A Sartrean Perspective. Berghahn Books.
    At the heart of this volume is the assertion that Sartrean existentialism, most prominent in the 1940s, particularly in France, is still relevant as a way of ...
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  22. Jean-Pierre Boulé & Enda McCaffrey (2011). Introduction. In Jean-Pierre Boulé & Enda McCaffrey (eds.), Existentialism and Contemporary Cinema: A Sartrean Perspective. Berghahn Books.
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  23. Jean-Pierre Boulé & Ursula Tidd (eds.) (2012). Existentialism and Contemporary Cinema: A Beauvoirian Perspective. Berghahn Books.
    This book is an attempt to redress this balance and reopen the dialogue between Beauvoir's writings and film studies.
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  24. Jean-Pierre Boulé & Ursula Tidd (2012). Introduction. In Jean-Pierre Boulé & Ursula Tidd (eds.), Existentialism and Contemporary Cinema: A Beauvoirian Perspective. Berghahn Books.
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  25. Curtis Bowman (2003). Horror's Philosophic Auteurs: Heidegger, the Uncanny, and Jacques Tourneur's Horror Films. In Steven Jay Schneider & Daniel Shaw (eds.), Dark Thoughts: Philosophic Reflections on Cinematic Horror. Scarecrow Press.
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  26. Paul Bowman (2010). Theorizing Bruce Lee: Film-Fantasy-Fighting-Philosophy. Rodopi.
    ' Armoured with his philosophical nunchakus, Bowman goes to battle with anyone who may doubt Lee's ongoing importance, and this book will undoubtedly become ...
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  27. Katrina A. Bramstedt (2009). Film Review Etienne!: A Film About the Little Things in Life. [REVIEW] Journal of Bioethical Inquiry 6 (4):513-514.
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  28. Richard Brown & Kevin S. Decker (eds.) (2009). Terminator and Philosophy: I'll Be Back, Therefore I Am. John Wiley & Sons.
    Time travelers and battles between people and machines provoke old philosophical questions: Can the past really be changed? How do we differentiate ourselves from machines? Can machines have an inner life? Brown (philosophy & critical thinking, LaGuardia Community Coll.) and Decker (philosophy, Eastern Washington Univ.; coeditor, Star Wars and Philosophy ) collect 19 essays by primarily young academics who pursue these questions with entertaining verve and philosophical skill. The Terminator story is about something well intentioned—a defense project—going wrong, but none (...)
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  29. Matthew Burstein (2009). The Thanatoria of Soylent Green: On Reconciling the Good Life with the Good Death. In Sandra Shapshay (ed.), Bioethics at the Movies. Johns Hopkins University Press. 275.
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  30. Havi Carel & Greg Tuck (eds.) (2011). New Takes in Film-Philosophy. Palgrave Macmillan.
    New Takes in Film-Philosophy offers a space for the advancement of the film-philosophy debate by some of its major figures. Fifteen leading academics from Philosophy and Film Studies develop new approaches to film-philosophy, broaden theoretical analyses of the topic and map out problems and possibilities for its future. The collection examines theoretical issues about the relationship between film and philosophy; looks at the relationships film-philosophy has to other media such as photography and literature; and applies theoretical approaches to particular films (...)
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  31. Havi Carel & Greg Tuck (2010). Film as Philosophy. The Philosophers' Magazine 50 (50):30-31.
    More people desperately require an organ than become donors themselves. When discussing organ donation, people mainly consider the question whether they want to donate, whereas empirically they are more likely to be on the receiving end. So it is rational for each of us to join the organ donor register and to agree to donate our relative’s organs, if we are ever in that situation.
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  32. Noel Carroll (2008). Philosophy in the Moving Image: Response to Bruce Russell. Film and Philosophy.
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  33. Stanley Cavell (1979). The World Viewed: Reflections on the Ontology of Film. Harvard University Press.
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  34. Jean-Yves Chateau (2008). Pourquoi Un Septième Art?: Cinéma Et Philosophie. Presses Universitaires de France.
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  35. Sarah Cooper (2006). Selfless Cinema?: Ethics and French Documentary. Legenda.
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  36. Damian Cox (2011). Thinking Through Film: Doing Philosophy, Watching Movies. Wiley-Blackwell.
    Philosophy and film. Why film and philosophy? -- Philosophy and film spectatorship -- Epistemology and metaphysics. Knowing what's what in Total recall -- Ontology and The matrix -- It's all in the mind: AI artificial intelligence and robot love -- La jetee and the promise of time travel -- The human condition. Fate and choice: the philosophy of Minority report -- Personal identity: the case of Memento -- The spectacle of horror: Funny games -- Looking for meaning in all the (...)
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  37. Angela Curran (2011). Review: Cinema, Philosophy, Bergman: On Film as Philosophy by Livingston, Paisley. [REVIEW] Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 69 (2):253-255.
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  38. Angela Curran (2009). Review of Dan Flory, Philosophy, Black Film, Film Noir. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2009 (3).
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  39. Michelle R. Darnell (2011). Films of Situation. Being-Lost in Translation. In Jean-Pierre Boulé & Enda McCaffrey (eds.), Existentialism and Contemporary Cinema: A Sartrean Perspective. Berghahn Books.
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  40. Michelle R. Darnell (2011). Lost in Translation. In Jean-Pierre Boulé & Enda McCaffrey (eds.), Existentialism and Contemporary Cinema: A Sartrean Perspective. Berghahn Books.
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  41. Oliver Davis (2012). Eastwood Reading Beauvoir Reading Eastwood: Ageing and Combative Self-Assertion in Gran Torino and Old Age. In Jean-Pierre Boulé & Ursula Tidd (eds.), Existentialism and Contemporary Cinema: A Beauvoirian Perspective. Berghahn Books.
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  42. A. E. Denham & Franklin Worrell (2013). Identity, Agency & Tragedy. In Zina Giannopoulos (ed.), The Philosophy of Film: David Lynch. Routledge.
  43. Lisa Downing (2010). What If We Are Post-Ethical? : Postmodernism's Ethics and Aesthetics. In , Film and Ethics: Foreclosed Encounters. Routledge.
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  44. Christopher Falzon (2011). The Call to Freedom. Peter Weir's The Truman Show and Sartrean Freedom. In Jean-Pierre Boulé & Enda McCaffrey (eds.), Existentialism and Contemporary Cinema: A Sartrean Perspective. Berghahn Books.
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  45. Haroldo Abraam Fontaine (2010). An Interdisciplinary Proposal for Employing Film to Release the Imaginations of Preservice Teachers. Journal of Aesthetic Education 44 (1):pp. 58-69.
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  46. Joseph S. Fulda (2013). The Logic of Failures of the Cinematic Imagination: Two Case Studies and a Logical Puzzle and Solution in Just One. Pragmatics and Society 4 (1):105-111.
    This piece is intended to explicate - by providing a precising definition of - the common cinematic figure which I term “the failure of the cinematic imagination,“ while presenting a logical puzzle and its solution within a simple Gricean framework. -/- It should be noted that this is neither fully accurate nor fully precise, because of the audience; one should examine the remaining articles in the issue to understand what I mean.
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  47. Richard A. Fumerton & Diane Jeske (eds.) (2010). Introducing Philosophy Through Film: Key Texts, Discussion, and Film Selections. Wiley-Blackwell.
    "Introducing Philosophy Through Film" combines this novel pedagogical approach with all the virtues of a serious introductory anthology of classical and ...
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  48. Alessandro Giovannelli (2010). Cognitive Value and Imaginative Identification: The Case of Kubrick's Eyes Wide Shut. Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 68 (4):355-366.
  49. Howard Good (2002). Media Ethics Goes to the Movies. Praeger.
    Uses cinema both to depict a variety of situations in which questions of media ethics arise, and to illustrate classic and contemporary ethical theories.
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  50. Christopher Grau, Kantian Themes in The Elephant Man.
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