Keighlee Riggan Reading Response #4: Friedberg with LA and Cars

Over spring break I read Anna Friedberg’s “Urban Mobility and Cinematic Visuality.” To be quite honest, I found the reading pretty confusing. I understood it to some extent, but I didn’t think I really grasped the entire concept until Professor Young addressed Friedberg in this week’s lectures.

Before the lecture, I only got the point that Los Angeles seems like it was a city built around the roads even though the roads came after the city itself did. I particularly liked the quote “as LA grew to a mobile metropolis, a lot of its vernacular architecture was built for the driver’s view.” I also understood that somehow Friedberg was talking about how the windshield of a car is a screen. I knew she was trying to convey that point. For some unknown reason, it wasn’t making sense to me how the windshield could act as a screen. I especially became lost when she began talking about cinema because I didn’t understand what cinema had to do with cars at all.

After lecture, I feel like I understand the concept of the reading much better. Now I can relate it to the course better. Friedberg was saying that essentially everything is a screen because everything changes your view or perspective of the world. When looking at it this way, cars are a visual interface and operate as augmented reality which is a pretty interesting way of looking at things.

After the reading and lecture I kind of thought about the Drive-In the way Friedberg and Professor Young talked about it. We used to have a drive-in in my county back home (link below). I never thought of how different drive-in culture is than an actual cinema. It was interesting to look at something common to me in a different way.