An Ephemeral History: Women and British Cinema Culture in the Silent Era

Gledhill, Christine (2013) An Ephemeral History: Women and British Cinema Culture in the Silent Era. DOI 10.6092/unibo/amsacta/3806. In: Researching Women in Silent Cinema: New Findings and Perspectives. A cura di: Dall'Asta, Monica ; Duckett, Victoria ; Tralli, Lucia. Bologna: Dipartimento delle Arti - DAR, Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna, pp. 131-148. ISBN 9788898010103. In: Women and Screen Cultures, (1). A cura di: Dall'Asta, Monica ; Duckett, Victoria. ISSN 2283-6462.
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Abstract

This essay examines select examples of British trade, fan and news press of the 1910s and 1920s in order to explore how the new visibility of women in cinema—both as audiences and in films—was registered. My focus is less how women themselves responded to cinema, than how these materials, in marking the relationship between women and cinema, reveal conflicts around shifting gender relations and identities. Starting by outlining some of the problems of using such material, I will highlight some key themes that emerged in British cultural discourses and imaginings across a range of print media circulating around cinema in this formative period. These include: women and cinema work; the English “girl” and “Americanitis”; sentimentality and “sob-stuff”; acting, “it” and sex-appeal; trans-valuation of the “true woman” in the new cinematic public sphere; femininity, class and representation; and gender contest.

Abstract
Document type
Book Section
Creators
CreatorsAffiliationORCID
Gledhill, Christine
Subjects
ISSN
2283-6462
ISBN
9788898010103
DOI
Deposit date
28 Sep 2013 15:04
Last modified
13 Mar 2015 14:40
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