JUMP CUT
A REVIEW OF CONTEMPORARY MEDIA

Notes

This essay is dedicated to Sara Gomez's family, who welcomed me to their home in Cuba.

1. For a Marxist reading of Hegel and an explicit discussion of dialectics, see the following: V. I. Lenin, Philosophical Notebooks, Collected Works, vol. 38 (Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1972); Henri Lefebvre, Dialectical Materialism, trans. John Sturrock (London: Jonathan Cape, 1968); Lefebvre, Logique formelle, Logique dialectique (Paris: Editions Anthropos, 1947); Lefebvre, The Sociology of Marx, trans. N. Guterman (New York: Random-Vintage, 1968). [return to page 1]

2. Bertell Ollman, Alienation: Marx's Concept of Man in Capitalist Society, 2nd ed. (Cambridge: Cambridge University press, 1976). It is extremely disappointing that in the second edition of Alienation Ollman neither changed the generic use of "man" nor discussed why he failed to do so. He did write new material to respond to critics of the first edition, and significantly he does not use the generic "man" to stand for both men and women in the text of those revisions. The fact that he has changed his own later writing style means that he cannot be ignorant of the issues at stake, but he does not at any point in this new edition acknowledge the women's movement or the intellectual insights it has engendered. Furthermore, he emphasizes the key role of language and terminology in Marx's writings and states that the "relational sense Marx gives to social entities has some basis in the German language which readers of the English version of his work necessarily miss"; at the same time, Ollman does not discuss whether "man" is the most accurate or appropriate English concept for a key Marxist term, man or Mensch in German being more commonly translated as "one," "person," or "human." Furthermore, clinging to the term "man" weakens Ollman's entire argument about alienation itself. He offers a particularly weak discussion of ideology, neglecting as he does women's socialization and the role of the family in the reproduction of production relations. Since this book is a key text in English on the theory of dialectics, its political failings, which become serious intellectual failings, hurt us all.

3. Lenin, "Conspectus of Hegel's Science of Logic," Philosophical Notebooks, p. 93.

4. Lenin, p. 212.

5. Mao Tse Tung, Selected Essays (Peking: Foreign Language Press, 1952).

6. In its inconsistent exposure and excessive graininess, this black-and-white film sometimes looks like a work print that falls drastically short of the high production values we usually associate with Cuban film. Some of this graininess is deliberately used to capture a documentary "feel," especially in the sequences where Mario's father or Guillermo Diaz are shown as community leaders, presumably in past times in the former slum. After Sara Gomez shot and edited this film in 16mm, the original negative was damaged in processing, and it took two years in labs in Sweden to restore the footage to its current state. Tragically, Sara Gomez died shortly after editing the film, and associates Tomás Gutiérrez Alea and Rigoberto Lopez supervised the sound-mix and post-production stages of preparing One Way or Another for theatrical release. [return to page 2]