The essay La sceneggiatura come «struttura che vuol essere altra struttura» has been subject to comprehensive biographical interpretations but it seldom has been taken seriously as the outline of a Pasolinian aesthetic theory. The paper proposes, firstly, to relocate Pasolini’s argument in the context of its spiritual and material genesis and to designate the philosophical and political implications of its main concepts. Secondly, it parallels Pasolini’s text with Roman Jakobson’s so called ‘Formalist’ approach and Friedrich Nietzsche’s psychology. A shifting concept that the author terms ‘Will to otherness’ then appears as the central category of Pasolini’s aesthetical thinking. As the author will briefly suggest at the end of his theoretical draft, this concept can be also used as a key to interpret Pasolini’s many-sided artistic production.

The role of the short essay La sceneggiatura come «struttura che vuol essere altra struttura» within Pier Paolo Pasolini’s film theory is at the same time, as I will try to show with this paper, a marginal and a pre-eminent one.[1] At all times, Pasolini’s thinking has definitely shown no concern of academic disciplinary distinctions and rigid conceptual definitions.[2] Therefore, not only his linguistics and his film theory display an alternatively amateurish or original, at any rate ‘impure’ approach to the matter. The theoretical character of his interventions – considering the wide range of heterogeneous texts, which since 1999 are included in the two volumes Saggi sulla letteratura e sull’arte[3] – is not more easily to be determined. This can be seen both in the individual case of one particular intervention and in a general way, as it could possibly apply to the collection Empirismo eretico (1972) as a whole. Because of their fuzzy concepts, but mainly because they try to make a language out of non-linguistic material, his ‘linguistics’ are not linguistics in the academic sense; because they try to make a sign out of ‘insignificant’ reality, from the same perspective his semiotics are not semiotics.[4] Furthermore, as I am going to argue, his film theory is rather to be seen as a much more complex, and maybe fuzzy, attempt to seize aesthetic phenomena as such. It is revealing in this respect that Gilles Deleuze’s Cinéma (1983-1985)[5] seems to be the only comprehensive academic study to take a serious theoretical impulse from Pasolini’s conceptualisations, mainly from his attempt to bring the literary category of free indirect speech to bear on film studies, especially on cinema history. Deleuze absorbs this analytic approach; what he calls the cinema of «image-temps» is conceptually akin to Pasolini’s «cinema di poesia» as the specifically postmodern, neocapitalist manifestation of the seventh art.[6] Deleuze’s approach, as well as Pasolini’s, is of course an unconventional and undogmatic one. Rather than film theory or cinema semiotics, his work is to be thought of as a Philosophy of Cinema. One could similarly designate Pasolini’s intellectually engaged contributions to theoretical debates as General Aesthetics, or rather Aesthetics of Will: This determinans seems indeed to constitute one of the main orienting concepts in his essayistic œuvre.

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