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October 2021, Week 2


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Liz Clarke <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 12 Oct 2021 15:40:03 -0400
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Call for Papers: A Teaching Companion to Silent Cinema

Edited by Liz Clarke and Martin Johnson

Due by Dec. 15, 2021

Film studies programs big and small have a common course: film history.
While programs divide film history courses in different ways—some by time
period, others by geography—they all address, if only for a few weeks,
silent cinema. These courses are rarely taught by researchers of silent
film, and a reliance on textbooks and allusions to the best known silent
films mischaracterize the period. In A Teaching Companion to Silent Cinema,
we hope to challenge these narratives of the first decades of cinema
through rich, engaging short essays on films that expand our sense of the
very possibilities of the medium. This collection will take what silent
film researchers already know--that the period from film’s invention in the
late 19th century to the transition to sound in the 1930s is among the
diverse, dynamic, and complex--and make films that more fully represent
this period accessible to teachers and students of film history.

Canonical histories of silent cinema have, with few exceptions, focused on
films made by white men in the United States and Europe. Filmmakers such as
D.W. Griffith, Charlie Chaplin, and Sergei Eisenstein are lionized, while
women, people of color, and filmmakers from small nations are ignored.
Historical epics and slapstick comedies are celebrated, while a multitude
of other genres and modes of filmmaking are skipped entirely. Although
scholars, archivists, and critics are actively seeking to correct these
oversights in their research, writing, and programming, the most widely
used textbooks in the field continue to emphasize this older narrative.
When students and teachers seek out diverse films, they often have trouble
finding material to contextualize what they’re seeing, particularly short
essays focused on individual films.

With this call, we are seeking essays (3,500 to 5,000 words) on feature
films, and notes (1,000 to 1,500 words) on short films that represent the
diversity of silent film cultures. These scholarly essays will provide
context to the film, information about the filmmakers, background
information, and a concise analysis of the film. These texts can be used to
complement commonly used film history textbooks or in conjunction with
theoretical essays. A few guidelines:


   One proposal per submitter. We want this collection to reflect the
   diversity of scholarship in the field as well.

   Proposed films should be readily available to instructors, through DVD,
   BluRay, digital repositories, or other sources.

   Ideally, your proposal should discuss a film that you have successfully
   screened to undergraduates. We are seeking to introduce students to films
   that will excite and engage them.

   We are seeking essays that challenge our sense of the film canon, while
   remaining accessible. While we welcome all proposals, here is a
   non-exhaustive list of some of the films we would like to include:


   Mario Roncoroni, Filibus (1915), Italy

   Enrique Rosas, The Grey Automobile (1919), Mexico

   Francis Ford, The Craving (1918), USA

   Frances Marion, The Love Light (1922), USA

   Oscar Micheaux, The Symbol of the Unconquered (1920), USA

   Jean Epstein, Coueur Fidèle (1923), France

   Robert Wiene, The Hands of Orlac (1924), Austria

   Lotte Reiniger, The Adventures of Prince Achmed (1926), Germany

   Dorothy Davenport, Linda (1929), USA

   Teinosuke Kinugasa, A Page of Madness (1926), Japan

   Wu Yonggang, The Goddess (1934), China

   Mário Peixoto, Limite (1930), Brazil

   Norbert A. Myles, The Daughter of Dawn (1920), USA

   Edward Curtis, In the Land of Headhunters (1914), USA

   Holger-Madsen, Trip to Mars (1918), Denmark

   Marion E. Wong’s The Curse of Quon Gwon (c. 1916-17), USA

   Cleo Madison, Eleanor’s Catch (1916), USA

   Yevgeni Bauer, The Dying Swan (1917), Russia

   E.A. Dupont, Piccadilly (1929), UK

Please send 300-word proposals, a 50-word bio, and access information for
the feature-length or short film you would like to discuss to
[log in to unmask] and [log in to unmask] by December 15, 2021. Acceptances
will be sent by January 17, 2022, and essays will be due by May 30, 2022.

Thank you,
Liz Clarke
Assistant Professor
Communication, Popular Culture and Film
Brock University

"The writer is the most important person in Hollywood, but we must never
tell the sons of bitches." Irving G. Thalberg

"Hobbies are the arch enemies of rust and ruts, both of which in turn are
the arch enemies of a woman's youth and good looks." Pearl White

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