Tillich and Tarkovsky: An Existential Analysis of Mirror

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Andrei Tarkovsky's Mirror is a "stream-of-consciousness" film that eschews traditional narrative structure. The author interprets the film as having an "emotional structure," insofar as it sequentially explores different manifestations of the experience of anxiety. Using the typology of anxiety developed by Paul Tillich in The Courage to Be, the author demonstrates how the first three parts of Mirror separately explore the anxiety of emptiness, of guilt, and of fate. Throughout these early parts of the film, symbols of death underscore themes of anxiety. The author interprets the fourth part of Mirror as a sustained meditation on the sources of what Tillich called absolute faith, the source of the courage to exist in spite of imminent anxiety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)451-466
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Humanistic Psychology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2012


  • Andrei Tarkovsky
  • Mirror
  • Paul Tillich
  • anxiety
  • death

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Philosophy
  • Sociology and Political Science


Dive into the research topics of 'Tillich and Tarkovsky: An Existential Analysis of Mirror'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this