Welcome to our second three-issue volume of Projections. As with the first issue of the previous volume, I would like to acknowledge everyone who served as a referee for Projections last year. A list of their names follows below. I would also like to emphasize my gratitude for the outstanding work that associate editors Tim Smith and Aaron Taylor have been doing to make the review and production processes seamless.
This issue features four original articles from scholars across a number of disciplines (and the world). We begin with an empirical study conducted by a collaboration of researchers at the Institute of Psychology at University of Tartu and the Baltic Film, Media, Arts, and Communication School at Tallinn University (both in Estonia). This article reports the results of an experiment designed to empirically test the question of whether particular film lighting techniques affect viewers’ empathic reactions.
Next, we have a pair of philosophically oriented articles. Francesco Sticchi explores parallels between the philosophy of Baruch Spinoza (1632–1677) and contemporary work on 4e cognition (that is, cognition that is embodied, embedded, extended, and enacted). Using Lynne Ramsay's You Were Never Really Here (2017) as a case study, Sticchi argues that “radical enactivism” is a particularly insightful approach to refining our understanding of the viewer's empathic engagement, an argument that offers a nice complement to the preceding empirical study.
The second half of our couplet of philosophically oriented articles is Jonathan Frome's extended critical engagement with Noël Carroll's theory of erotetic narration—roughly, that is, the idea that motion-picture narratives are structured in terms of a series of questions and answers. Frome's project here is critical, yet it is important to see that its aim is to initiate the sort of dialectical argumentation that Carroll himself has persuasively argued is crucial for progress in the study of motion pictures and other arts.
We conclude the issue with Héctor J. Pérez's analysis of the significance of a particular narrative device—the plot twist— in the context of serial television. Tacitly engaging with another of Carroll's field-shaping arguments—in this case, about medium specificity—Pérez argues that there is something specific about the way the plot twist functions in serial television that distinguishes it from its use in narrative film. And for anyone who is still not caught up on Game of Thrones (David Benioff and D. B. Weiss, 2011–2019), caution—spoilers ahead! As usual, reviews of some of the most interesting new books in the field round out our first issue of 2020.
Now, thanks to all those who refereed submissions for Projections in 2019:
Adriano D'Aloia (University of Campania “Luigi Vanvitelli”)
Todd Berliner (University of North Carolina, Wilmington)
Rick Busselle (Bowling Green State University)
Maarten Coëgnarts (University of Antwerp)
Antoine Coutrot (French National Center for Scientific Research)
Angela Curran (Kansas State University)
Katherine Dale (Florida State University)
Allison Eden (Michigan State University)
Jens Eder (Film University Babelsberg Konrad Wolf)
Jason Gendler (California State University, Long Beach)
Torben Grodal (University of Copenhagen)
Tilo Hartmann (VU University Amsterdam)
Patrick Colm Hogan (University of Connecticut)
Sophie Janicke-Bowles (Chapman University)
Guan-Soon Khoo (Roanoke College)
Miklós Kiss (University of Groningen)
Richard Neupert (University of Georgia)
Michael Z. Newman (University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee)
Carl Plantinga (Calvin University)
Stephen Prince (Virginia Tech)
Gal Raz (Sagol Brain Institute)
Rainer Reisenzein (University of Greifswald)
Jaakko Seppälä (University of Helsinki)
Mario Slugan (Queen Mary University of London)
Claire Thomson (University College London)
Pia Tikka (Tallinn University)
Malcolm Turvey (Tufts University)
Margrethe Bruun Vaage (University of Kent)