Dr Reidar Due
Subject: Modern Languages
Department: Medieval and Modern Languages
College appointment: Tutorial Fellow
Reidar Due teaches Film Aesthetics at Oxford and in particular the history of French and Italian film and film theory. He also teaches the evolution of the French novel to undergraduates at Magdalen College.
Reidar Due wrote his doctorate on the philosophy of Jean-Paul Sartre. It is entitled Etre sujet devant l’etre, la methode philosophique de Jean-Paul Sartre. In that thesis he situates Sartre in the French spiritualist tradition and argues that his appropriation of German phenomenology and ontology is entirely divested of the transcendental, Kantian project that is still present in Husserl and Heidegger.
He has written an introduction to the philosophy of Gilles Deleuze. In this book, he reconstructs Deleuze’s philosophy as a semiotic theory of thought that seeks a middle path between the metaphysical positions of materialism and idealism, but which also leaves unanswered ethical and political questions concerning agency.
He has written a philosophical treatise on love in its relation to film, which is entitled Love in motion, erotic relationships in film. In this book he argues that love declines in modernity due to a marital paradigm that obscures the ontological essence of love, which is a reciprocal erotic force that asserts itself within the world, among other relationships. The book also develops a comparative historical semiotics of film language, inspired by Weber’s theory of ideal types. Currently he is working on the phenomenology of political experience as reflected in film. This book argues that film is different from political science in that it does not explain political phenomena and it does not categorise them as belonging to separate classes, such as international relations, civil society, democratic institutions, clandestine violence and so on. Film rather presents agents and witnesses who inscribe their desires and interests within a dense multiplicity of power relationships.