Film Magistery #4: The Lives of Others/Surveillance

In the fourth episode of Film Magistery Dino talks about surveillance and how the society is subdued the heavy tracking from many different sides. As the reference to the theme the German film The Lives of Others (von Donnersmarck, 2006) is chosen to be discussed and how East Germany’s security police, the Stasi, kept the whole nation under its firm surveillance. Bentham’s concept of Panopticon is mentioned as an important element in discussion about surveillance.

But what does surveillance mean to us? Does it concern us on a personal level or are we just saying “I don’t care; they can monitor me anywhere and anytime – I have nothing to hide”? But what when surveillance is undertaken by private companies, domestic or foreign governments? Dino asks if a society should passively accept surveillance or perhaps contest it and demand from politicians to legislate and control it.

There is also a mentioning of some other examples of films with surveillance as the main theme: The Conversation, Minority Report, Caché, Brazil, Rear Window etc.

Relevant links:

The Lives of Others (IMDb)

The Lives of Others (Letterboxd)

Film Magistery YouTube channel

Surveillance (Wikipedia)

Michel Foucault – Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison

David Phillips – Identity and Surveillance Play in Hybrid Space

Online Territories: Globalization, Mediated Practice and Social Space, 2011.

Julia Angwin – Dragnet Nation

Hubertus Knabe – The Dark Secrets of a Surveillance State (Ted Salon)

Dino’s Uncomplete Film Masterpiece list

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