Touching the Screen, Striding through the Mirror: The Haptic in Film.

B. Papenburg

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterProfessional


Cinema, by virtue of the prevalence of such metaphors as ‘the camera-eye’ and ‘the gaze’, can be taken to epitomize the Western primacy of vision. It might be counterintuitive to assume that the experience of cinema is an inter-modal experience, involving senses other than vision and aurality. In line with phenomenological and feminist approaches to film experience this book chapter argues that spectatorship in the cinema is essentially a synaesthetic experience. In order to corroborate this contention this contribution focuses on the importance of the haptic for cinematic aesthetics. By elucidating the interweaving of representations and evocations of tactile experience in a set of films from a range of different genres, time periods and national contexts, it aims to put forward some suggestions as to the interplay of the senses within film spectatorship, which are considered here under the rubric of immersive experience.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationWhat does a Chameleon look like? Topographies of Immersion
EditorsS. K. Menrath, A. Schwinghammer
Place of PublicationCologne
PublisherHerbert von Halem Verlag
Number of pages25
ISBN (Print)9783938258514
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • Specialized histories (international relations, law)
  • Literary theory, analysis and criticism
  • Culturele activiteiten
  • Overig maatschappelijk onderzoek


Dive into the research topics of 'Touching the Screen, Striding through the Mirror: The Haptic in Film.'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this