Noise, ecological crises, and the posthuman sensibility of Michel Serres in Jonathan Glazer’s Under the Skin

Hunt, K.J. ORCID: 0000-0002-1985-4351, 2023. Noise, ecological crises, and the posthuman sensibility of Michel Serres in Jonathan Glazer’s Under the Skin. Continuum: Journal of Media and Cultural Studies. ISSN 1030-4312

Full text not available from this repository.


This article revisits Jonathan Glazer’s sci-fi film Under the Skin, ten years on from its release in 2013, to re-read it through Michel Serres’s posthuman philosophy as an allegorical warning about the ongoing ecological crises. Making this argument involves recognizing, through Serres, the crucial role of artistic practice in questioning our current neglect of sensible modes of being. Focusing upon the importance of ‘noise’ within Serres’s posthuman thinking, this article considers the alignment between the sensibility of ‘The Female’ in Under the Skin – an alien in human form (portrayed by Scarlett Johansson) – and the virtue of sensibility advocated by Serres of being ‘on the cusp of sense in the making’ (Webb 2018): a dynamic position situated between the chaotic noise of the world and the limitations of human language (Serres 2016). In combination with Glazer’s direction, the original musical score by Mica Levi and innovative sound design by Johnnie Burn are central to the argument. An additional aim of the article is to show the significance of Serres’s thinking within cultural studies, where this philosophy is currently undervalued.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Continuum: Journal of Media and Cultural Studies
Creators: Hunt, K.J.
Publisher: Routledge
Date: 8 November 2023
ISSN: 1030-4312
Rights: This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The terms on which this article has been published allow the posting of the Accepted Manuscript in a repository by the author(s) or with their consent.
Divisions: Schools > Nottingham School of Art & Design
Record created by: Jonathan Gallacher
Date Added: 20 Nov 2023 10:14
Last Modified: 20 Nov 2023 10:14

Actions (login required)

Edit View Edit View


Views per month over past year


Downloads per month over past year