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Theresa Hak Kyung Cha in Black and White

Cambridge University Press


Theresa Hak Kyung Cha in Black and White explores the relation between text, author, and reader – a nexus theorized as the 'apparatus' in Cha's study of cinema – by tracing two key literary intertexts in Dictée: Henry James's 'The Jolly Corner,' a submerged literary resonance in Apparatus, Cha's anthology of film theory, and the writing of Saint Thérèse of Lisieux, a primary intertext at the heart of Dictée. In Cha's film theory, black and white is the flicker of the cinematic apparatus, and the Elements readings consider this contrasting palette in self-reflexive portraits in black and white. This study reads flashes of identification, often in punishing self-encounters, and it dwells on the figure of the martyr to arrive at the death of Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, the patron saint of artists and scholars fascinated by her art and her suffering.