Film Studies As a Normative Academic Discipline

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In the article for the first time both in Russian and foreign investigation the concept of cinematology as film and arts studies in general as a normative academic discipline is introduced. The authors assert that the key feature of the normative science is the formulation of the mostly non-evident, though sometimes evident evaluations and norms. The authors argue against the assertion that cinema and arts studies are mainly a descriptive discipline that doesn’t contain any even obscure evaluations or recommendations. Cinema and arts studies take off actual experience of artistic perception, in particular the perception of the works of art, and attempt at description and generalization of this experience. The latter always contains both estimation of particular acts of artistic perception, art styles and trends, and recommendations concerning what may be evaluated ad “genuine tragedy”, “genuine beauty”, “film-masterpiece”. Assertions functioning as imperatives, where the predicate ‘is’ implies ‘ought to be, play the focus role in film studies. This ‘two-dimensional’ mode of thinking composes inner form of all normative sciences constantly switching from passive contemplative speech usage to active pragmatist one. Approaching empirically, the authors argue, that there always evaluation and ambiguous, descriptive statements become apparent in film studies. This fact gives reason to refer film studies to normative disciplines.

About the authors

Irina Petrovna Nikitina


Author for correspondence.

PhD in Philosophy, Professor (History and Philosophy Department)

Alexander Arkhipovich Ivin

Institute of Philosophy of RAS


PhD in Philosophy, Professor, chief researcher


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Copyright (c) 2014 Nikitina I.P., Ivin A.A.

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