My guest this week is Christine Atchison, who lives in the suburbs of Toronto, and recently completed a PhD which explored transcendence in film. Christine talks about how the 1989 Batman film started her interest in this area, as did a conversation in a bar on pluralism in the Patristic period.
Christine discusses imposter syndrome and Eliade and talks about why she enjoyed her PhD viva. She studied in the UK and moved to China and she was fascinated to see how superhero movies were received there compared to the West. We talk about whether people will become used to watching films at home in the future, post-lockdown, and whether there is a future for films to be primarily cinema, and communal, based.
Christine talks about why her experience of watching Batman vs. Superman was very different from that of her friends – and how the experience of watching the movie at the cinema is the reason for that.
We learn that Christine started studying biology and history when she was at university and we learn how she got into Religious Studies, and how she would love to research and make an impact on people.
Christine comes from a working class background, and we learn that she has followed a different path to other family members, and she discusses how when she was young she preferred to be indoors rather than play outside. Christine talks about the privilege element of doing a PhD and how financial help could make greater diversity possible.
Christine talks about how going to university changed her life forever and we find out about the teachers who have been so supportive.
At the end of the interview, Christine reflects on how even the negative things in her life don’t feel negative, looking back, and how she can be nostalgic about those fragile moments. We talk about depth and transcendence and she explains why her younger self would be confused about what she is doing now, and whether she would want to revisit her past.
Please note: Opinions expressed are solely those of Chris Deacy and Christine Atchison and do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of the University of Kent.