Markos Hadjioannou
Associate Professor of Literature

My work is dedicated to thinking about cinema as a heterochronic composite, or a multiplicity—one that entwines various cultural structures of intermediations and also different and differing modes of philosophical thinking-becoming. Invested in broadening the scope of “Film Philosophy,” I trace the intermedial and polymorphic transmutations of cinema in relation to various other related audio-visual media. My main concern throughout is to show that cinema is a historically variable process of technohuman mediation, which interacts constantly and renewably with other medial operations and produces modes of existence and thought.

More specifically, ranging from explorations in classical and contemporary cinema and media studies, to directions within literary and critical theory, cultural studies, continental European philosophy (aesthetics, metaphysics, phenomenology), and—more recently—anthropology, I focus on current debates surrounding the so-called digital revolution and its impact on our engagements with media forms and society. This leads me to questions of technological ontology and evolution, representation, reality and truth, and spectatorship, agency and ethics.

My first monograph, From Light to Byte: Toward an Ethics of Digital Cinema (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2012) addresses cinema’s transformations as a result of various acts of digitization within the industry. Here, I address media ontology from a primarily Deleuzian, Merleau-Pontian and Cavellian perspective of time, change, embodiment, and reality, which also inspires my reading of spectatorial ethics as responsibility. The project shifts the weight of the digital debate from the side of the technical or human, to that of a historically renewed and continually renewable entanglement of the technical and the human.

I am now in the late stages of a new manuscript (contracted by Duke University Press) titled The Interactive Spectator. In this, I am concerned with unhinging “interactivity” from a specifically computational framework. Instead, I propose that interactivity is an inherent faculty of the spectatorial experience, which arises from all forms of visual media—albeit with differing effects each time: from photography, to cinema, television, video, media art, gaming and other computational media. Here, I argue for two major regimes of interactive spectatorship, chronic and kinetic, both of which produce an entanglement of hostile and hospitable forces and powers, and related though divergent models of subjectivation. This project also introduces the possibility for cinema and media analysis to take up the philosophical work of a series of different thinkers: primarily Michel Serres, Jacques Derrida, Alfred Gell, and Simone de Beauvoir amongst others.

I welcome the opportunity to advise students (undergraduate thesis writers or graduate students in all stages of their PhDs) who are interested in doing research in cinema studies or audio-visual media studies more broadly, from a theoretical/philosophical perspective.

Current Research Interests

General research interests include Film Theory, Film Philosophy, and Analog and Digital Media. Currently, I am working on a philosophical exploration of medial spectatorship and interactivity, which expands from early photographic devices through the 20th century, to contemporary computational media.

Office Hours

Please email me with a request for a meeting.

Current Appointments & Affiliations

Contact Information

  • 101C Friedl Bldg, Box 90670, Durham, NC 27708
  • 1316 Campus Dr, Rm 101C Friedl Bldg, Box 90670, Durham, NC 27708

Some information on this profile has been compiled automatically from Duke databases and external sources. (Our About page explains how this works.) If you see a problem with the information, please write to Scholars@Duke and let us know. We will reply promptly.