Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
Tip: To access the PEP-Web Facebook pageā€¦

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

PEP-Web has a Facebook page! You can access it by clicking here.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Corel, A. (1998). Language and Time in Citizen Kane. Psychoanal. Inq., 18(2):154-160.

(1998). Psychoanalytic Inquiry, 18(2):154-160

Language and Time in Citizen Kane

Antoine Corel, M.D.

“No trespassing” warns a sign at the beginning of Citizen Kane, and the camera dutifully proceeds to climb up the fence and to plunge us into the forbidden domain and into fiction. The transgression appears as an eloquent metaphor of Orson Welles's position when beginning his first film, at a moment when there seemed to be no barriers for the young genius admitted to Hollywood and given full powers. A new and fascinating domain was opening up to him after a career in the theater and the radio that, marked by the sensational and even the truculent, can be more soberly defined in terms of its familiarity with Shakespearian characters (concerning whom we may note their larger-than-life qualities that lead to catastrophe and punishment).

Citizen Kane (the first film made by Orson Welles—released in 1941, at a moment when the United States was divided on the question of joining the war against the Axis) was at once understood as a political transgression, as a critical portrayal of press tycoon W. R. Hearst who supported Hitler through his newspapers.

Transgression is also a dominant theme in the narrative world, both in the general design of a film that sets out to discover the secret of a powerful man and in the nature of the secret itself.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

Copyright © 2019, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.