Ghosts of Theatre and Cinema in the Brain by M. Pizzato

By M. Pizzato

Pizzato specializes in the staging of Self and different as phantom characters contained in the mind (in the 'mind's eye', as Hamlet says). He explores the brain's anatomical evolution from animal drives to human cognizance to divine aspirations, via targeted cultural expressions in degree and reveal applied sciences.

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Today’s virtual realities appear to give a godlike transcendence to the mass audience, playing with the pastiche of violent imagery, ostensibly without consequence since it is just a fiction onscreen. Yet, the hollowness of film, TV, videogames, and computers, as extensions of our visuospatial and audioverbal brains, repeatedly evokes new traumas in the Real: from serial killers and their copycats to school gunmen and international terrorists performing for the news media. Thus, we might find ourselves joining the Chorus of Thyestes, appealing to the gods within our minds, if not above, to help us with the bestial passions of warped human instincts: “Stop crime coming back / and grandsons outdoing their / famous grandfather in wickedness.

Apollo now admits responsibility for Orestes’s act: “for I it was who told you to take your mother’s life” (162). But the Furies show the self-punishing violence in that patriarchal demand, as a vengeful, death-drive id (or abject chora) within Orestes, which his superego god can only temporarily anesthetize. Before he leaves the stage in the play’s prologue, Apollo gives his view of the sleeping Furies: “these damsels of disgust, / hoary urchin hags with whom no god can mix, / nor man nor beast—ever” (Roche 161–62).

You do not see them,” he says to the Chorus and theatre spectators. “But I see them. ”23 The Libation Bearers ends with Orestes driven offstage by a sight that the audience and Chorus can only imagine through his words, showing his alienation from both groups and the disconnection of his internal theatre from theirs. 24 In The Eumenides Aeschylus expands the fictional world onstage to reveal more of the inner theatre of Orestes’s mind, through the play’s metaphysical characters. The ghost of his mother and the Furies of her vengeance both appear onstage.

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