Bulletin 678



Subject: A Film: Peter Brueghel the Elder, the artist as social critic.



10 January 2016
Grenoble, France



Dear Colleagues and Friends of CEIMSA,

So many people responded positively to ‘the delightful street art’ pieces that I sent to you as an early New Year’s gift that I am taking the liberty to send you another post-New Year gift, an Internet link to the wonderful film by Polish artist Lech Majewski, “The Mill and the Cross” (2011).


If you have an hour-and-a-half to spare, this film is based on the painting by Peter Brueghel the Elder (1525-1569) - "The Way to Calvary".


Among other things, it is an essentially visual portrait (with very little dialogue) that offers an illustration of how the state apparatuses stand prepared to defend the ideological hegemony of the status quo, and how the corporate state counts on the collusion of the general population, and the techniques that are available to assure that this mass collaboration is maintained.


The time of this film is the 16th Century; the place is Spanish occupied Flanders. The film focuses on a dozen of the 500 characters depicted in Brueghel’s painting. It consists of a series of vignettes depicting everyday peasant life, interspersed with monologues from some of the principal characters, including Bruegel explaining the structure and symbolism of his painting. The theme of Christ's suffering is set against religious persecution in Flanders in 1564.



(Une attente d'une minute pour télécharger ce film de 1h30/A one minute wait to download this 1h30 movie)



Je vous souhaite une expérience visuelle cinématique très intéressante.




Francis Feeley


Professor of American Studies

University of Grenoble-3

Director of Research

University of Paris-Nanterre

Center for the Advanced Study of American Institutions and Social Movements

The University of California-San Diego