In some of the earliest film theory written, Dziga Vertov coined the expressions Kino-Pravda, Kino-Eye, etc. to describe film’s essential role as a witness to the world. Nearly a century on, caboose is pleased to introduce Kino-Agora, a forum for debating the issues in film studies today. In ancient Greece, an agora was a place of public assembly where ideas were exchanged—and goods bought and sold. Since its birth, the cinema has fulfilled this function in the modern world, but critical writing about film has become polarised between academic jargon and the products of the movie industry. With this series, caboose bridges that divide and pioneers a genre of critical writing on film in English: the essay in short-book form. Kino-Agora invites leading scholars and new voices to explore novel or neglected micro-topics in film theory and history, issue manifestos or challenge received ideas, free from the strictures of conventional academic writing. Journal articles are too short for such projects, and the typical academic book too weighty; the 20,000-word format of these volumes balances depth and accessibility.
These intimate essays will engage students and general readers alike with innovative discussions of current topics in film studies while challenging specialists with compelling new perspectives. Like the agora of old, Kino-Agora is a forum for dialogue and exchange, placing film at the centre of contemporary social and aesthetic debates and proposing a new critical language on film and new ways of reading about film. Film in dialogue with the other arts, with society, with film itself—and film scholars in dialogue with readers in a free market of ideas. These accessible and affordable essays are perfectly suited to be read as undergraduate texts or on a train.
To launch the series, one Kino-Agora book will be given away free of charge with every on-line order of the book Introduction to a True History of Cinema and Television by Jean-Luc Godard. A new title in the series will be introduced every few months throughout 2013 and shipped with the Godard book when it launches in April 2013. Kino-Agora titles are also available as e-books from Amazon and Apple; links are provided on each title’s page.
Titles in print (select a title to read a description):