Late Socialism, the Special Period, and Film and Media Practice
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Balaisis maps the economic and political conditions that underscore film and media practice in late socialist Cuba. He draws attention to the specific temporality of the period, a period that is marked both by rapid change and transformation as well as stasis, stagnation, and nostalgia. He argues that aesthetic modes such as melodrama and irony, as well as stylistic elements such as direct address and the long take, communicate the temporal experience of late socialism in Cuba, where new global traffic and a globalizing economy co-exist with iconic socialist features of the Cuban revolution. Balaisis situates the contemporary period within a broader history of modernity—as a slow and asymmetrical global process—which has a similarly contradictory experience of time.