Fate, freedom and anime-worldliness: from Heidegger and Nishida to anime-philosophy
thesisposted on 29.03.2022, 01:11 by Philip Gordon Martin
Recent philosophy has begun a fruitful relationship with the challenges posed by film. Oneform of this encounter, sometimes termed 'film-philosophy', explores general and aesthetic questions about film and its relationship to philosophy, such as why film matters, if film can engage in philosophical thinking, what philosophical concerns may be relevant in our experience of film, and how film may change the way we think about philosophising.However, such inquiries have held an overwhelming bias towards traditional 'live-action' film. This brief dissertation will open up the field to a heretofore neglected form of audiovisual media: Japanese anime. I will develop a concept of anime-worlds from Thomas Lamarre's media theory and philosophy of technology alongside Daniel Yacavone's film-philosophy in order to explore how anime can be philosophical and the ways in which it can engage in reflective philosophical thought. I will demonstrate the value of this approach by addressing specific examples of anime and examining how they develop ideas of fate and freedom. This will be accomplished through the deployment of a hermeneutic framework extracted from readings of fate, freedom and worldliness in the philosophies of Martin Heidegger and theKyōto School. Through this engagement, anime will reveal new ways of understanding the relationship between philosophy and film media. Anime has its own special contributions to make to philosophy, and to understand these (beyond film-philosophy) we must embarkdown the path of anime-philosophy.