The Baroque Night
by Spencer Golub
Northwestern University Press
eISBN: 978-0-8101-3783-7 | Paper: 978-0-8101-3781-3 | Cloth: 978-0-8101-3782-0

ABOUT THIS BOOK | AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY
ABOUT THIS BOOK
In The Baroque Night, authorial idiosyncrasy hybridizes the concepts of “baroque” and “noir” across the fields of film, theatre, literature, and philosophy, arguing for mental function as form, as an impossible object, a container in which the container itself is the thing contained. An experiment in thinking difference/thinking differently, an ethics of otherness and the abstract, Golub inverts the unreality of the real and the reality of fiction, exposing the tropes of memory, identity, and authenticity as a scenic route through life that ultimately blocks the view. The book draws upon materials that have not previously been included in studies of either the baroque or film noir, while offering new perspectives on other, more familiar sources. Leibniz’s concepts of the monad and compossibility provide organizing thought models, and death, fear, and mental illness cast their anamorphic images across surfaces that are deeper and closer than they at first appear. This is virtuality and reality for the phobic, making it a fascinating and viable document of and episteme for the anxious age in which we (always) find ourselves living, though not yet fully alive. This performance of suspect evidence speaks to and in the ways we are organically inauthentic, the cause of our own causality and our own worst eyewitnesses to all that appears and disappears in space and time. Key characters and situations in the book derive from the works of Alfred Hitchcock, Henri-Georges Clozot, Jean-Pierre Melville, Oscar Wilde, Georges Perec, Patricia Highsmith, Shakespeare, Jean Racine, Pierre Corneille, and Arthur Conan Doyle, among many others.

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