Future Realism and the Exception: Carl Schmitt and Hollywood Sci-fi Movies
Refereed conference paper presented and published in conference proceedings



摘要This paper explores possible affinities between Carl Schmitt’s concept of the exception and the genre of Hollywood sci-fi movies. To Schmitt, the sovereign is the one “who decides on the exception.” No legal prescription, Schmitt argues, can encompass or predict every possible future scenario; the future — as opposed to sameness extended — is per definition radically unpredictable. Any radically new development (i.e. the future-as-radically-unpredictable) is a potential threat to the sovereign’s authority; therefore, the sovereign’s authority ultimately comes down to the right to decide on the exception. Schmitt’s exception is designed to anticipate — politically — a future that cannot be anticipated or imagined. In my paper, I hope to further develop these thoughts in connection with a discussion of various sci-fi genre theories, including Darko Suvin’s influential concept of the novum, which he uses to distinguish the sci-fi genre from other, similar genres. To Suvin, the sci-fi genre is above all characterized by introducing scientifically plausible new things, i.e. the novum, whereby the genre remains — futuristically — imaginable, and hence realistic. An exception to Suvin’s rule of the novum, I argue, is precisely Schmitt’s concept of the exception; it is the Schmittian exception that ultimately reactivates the genre’s political potential amidst conservative visions of the future-as-the-present (but with new things). In my paper, I will provide some examples from various Hollywood sci-fi movies, including Spielberg’s Minority Report (2002) and Blomkamp’s Elysium (2013). My argument is that both movies — albeit in different ways — reactivate a political potential through plots that involve envisioning the radically unpredictable future.
著者Eli Park Sorensen
會議名稱The 53rd Japanese Association for American Studies (JAAS) Annual Meeting 2019
會議地點Hosei University
會議論文集題名2019 JAAS 53rd Annual Meeting
出版社The Japanese Association for American Studies

上次更新時間 2019-13-06 於 12:58