The paper discusses Abbas Kiarostami’s 1979 film, First Case, Second Case. Completed at the end of the Iranian Revolution, just days before the Shah fled Iran and Khomeini returned from exile to take command of the newly-liberated nation, the film had to be significantly revised in the face of this historical scission and an uncertain future. What was at stake in this moment, Khomeini claimed, was the sensorium of the Iranian people and the role cinema should play in restoring it. Kiarostami took these stakes seriously and responded directly.
Joan Copjec is a Professor of Modern Culture and Media at Brown University. She is a philosopher, theorist, and feminist film scholar. Her books include Imagine There’s No Woman: Ethics and Sublimation (MIT Press, 2003), Read My Desire: Lacan against the Historicists (MIT Press, 1994), and Supposing the Subject (Verso, 1994).
- Sharmin & Bijan Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Iran & Persian Gulf Studies
- Eberhard L. Faber 1915 Memorial Fund in the Humanities Council
- Committee for Film Studies