University of Helsinki, Finland
Martyna Markowska, Master of Arts in Philosophy (2005) and Cultural studies (2006) at the University of Silesia, Poland. From 2007 to 2010 Markowska worked as a university lecturer in Dushanbe (Tajikistan). Currently, she is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Comparative Literature at the University of Helsinki (Finland). Her doctoral thesis is concerned with the “Cityscape by images and words: Helsinki, Berlin and Silesia region in photographic novels.” During 2010 and 2011 she is a visiting scholar in the Department of Nordic Philology, University of Zurich, Switzerland. Markowska is a member of the Finnish Literature Society and the European Network for Comparative Literature Studies. The author of numerous research articles, reviews and essays, she also works in cooperation with several cultural institutes and organizations (Ars Cameralis Upper Silesia Institute etc.).
Articles of Martyna Markowska
Flusser and the Polish (Photography) Novels
Reading Polish photographic novels through Flusser presents an expression that metaphorically depicts the principal aim of this essay. Vilém Flusser’s Towards a philosophy of photography is one of the crucial theoretical texts for current work in the field of comparative literature. Flusser’s theories are key for understanding the phenomenon of intermediality, which consists of the relations between photography and literature. This essay explains why, how, and in which type of novels Flusser’s theory is sustainable and relevant for intermedial analysis. Two Polish novels were chosen for this interpretation: “Pamiętnik diabła” by Irek Grin and “Fototerapia” by Katarzyna Sowula. The novels reflect on Flusser’s concepts in several ways, as well as on the analysis of the problems of photographic ethics and aesthetics involved in their narration. In the essay, Markowska focuses on the following issues present in the narratives of the novels: a photographer as literary character, ethical responsibilities of documentary photography, the book as a new medium, that is, the textual and visual reproduction of images within the literary art work. The analytical part is preceded by a theoretical introduction explaining Flusser’s photographic theory and the philosopher’s dialogue with ideas by Walter Benjamin, Susan Sontag and Roland Barthes.