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Deconstruction strategy and the search for life values in the film Walkabout (1971)

M. R. Torburg
National University of Science and Technology MISiS (Russia, Moscow)
S. V. Dobronravov
Moscow Humanitarian Economic University (Russia, Moscow)

DOI: 10.22394/2412-9410-2022-8-1-190-199

Keywords: deconstruction strategy, pluralism, relativism, life values, exotic cultures, synchronic consideration, delegitimization of classical culture, criticism of rationalism

Abstract: The purpose of this article is to study how the strategy of deconstruction is implemented in the film Walkabout (1971), created by British director and cameraman Nicholas Roeg. On the one hand, the film touches upon eternal philosophical questions, and with an arc reflects the intellectual atmosphere of the time of its creation. Walkabout embodied the ideas of the French philosophers J. F. Lyotard and J. Derrida, with whom the form of postmodernism as a philosophical trend begins. The film presents philosophical ideas generated by modern capitalist society, such as the disintegration of identity, the decentralization of man in the world, disillusionment with scientific and technological progress and globalization of the world community, the collapse of traditional values. The choice of location for filming reflects a trend characteristic of modern Western society an increase in interest in exotic cultures and, especially, in their spiritual practices. The authors of the film use irony, hints, allegories and other favorite formalistic devices of postmodern thought. The film embodies postmodern ideas the denial of identity as semantic and objective constancy, the decentering of the personality, as well as the delegitimization of the attitudes of classical culture based on the concepts of logocentrism, phonocentrism, phallocentrism and criticism of Western rationalism. By deconstructing the rituals and values that underlie the social practices of representatives of modern and primitive cultures, the filmmakers reveal their difference, which is opposite to the rationalistic and mythological view of the world, and the similarity, which lies in the absolute absence of freedom in their lives. The existence of representatives of these cultures is completely determined by factors external to their personalities. The authors of the article come to the conclusion that the filmmakers, using a rationalistic approach and highly developed technology, without which it is impossible to create high-quality film, contribute to an understanding of the problems of modern culture. In addition, by going beyond the framework of postmodern thought, they tune the audience to certain life values, which are based on a synthesis of primitive solidarity and the technical achievements of modern civilization.

To cite this article: Torburg, M. R., & Dobronravov, S. V. (2022). Deconstruction strategy and the search for life values in the film Walkabout (1971). Shagi/Steps, 8(1), 190199. (In Russian). https://doi.org/10.22394/2412-9410-2022-8-1-190-199.