Stanley Cavell considers the modern stroller, or the flâneur, as foreshadowing the emergence of films. Film theorists have argued that the emergence of film and the flâneur can be attributed to the alienation and estrangement that modernism brings to society. This form of estrangement encourages a distanced view of the world along with a desire to view the world as a child. Despite the fact that the flâneur shares a lot of characteristics with the film audience, they are fundamentally different in how they understand the form of alienation endemic to modernity. In this paper, I examine the origins of the flâneur and film to better understand the similarities and differences between the flâneur and the film audience, arguing that while the flâneur deliberately alienates himself in order to participate in this form of estrangement, the film audience is conditioned to participate in this estrangement.

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