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January 2023, Week 4


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Film History <[log in to unmask]>
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Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Thu, 19 Jan 2023 21:36:41 +0000
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A reminder about the 16mm conference, scheduled for September 2023 at Indiana University.  Note also that Film History will be publishing at least one issue devoted to 16mm as part of this centenary project.  Contact me for more information about the conference or the special issues.

Gregory A. Waller, Editor
Film History
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Provost Professor
Cinema and Media Studies
The Media School
Franklin Hall
Indiana University
Bloomington IN 47405

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Conference at Indiana University, Bloomington September 13-16, 2023

How to submit proposal: Proposals should be submitted to via this form<> which includes: a 250-word proposal, list of key words, biographical statement, and (when appropriate) brief bibliography. Deadline is January 31, 2023.


As the capstone to a year-long series of academic events, traveling film programs, exhibits, digitization initiatives, newly-commissioned films and publications marking the 100-year anniversary of the introduction of 16mm in 1923, the Indiana University Libraries Moving Image Archive and the Media School at Indiana University will host a conference at IU Bloomington on September 13-16, 2023.

16mm had achieved an extraordinary level of success by the immediate post-World War II years. 16mm cameras opened vast new possibilities for amateur filmmakers, political activists, academic researchers, and experimental artists, for local entrepreneurs, government officials, public relation firms, advertisers, and major corporations. Typically designed to be portable and easy-to-operate but also available in a range of specialized models intended for close analysis of motion picture images or for looped sales displays, 16mm projectors immeasurably expanded the reach of cinema to a host of occasions and sites, including–but well beyond–classrooms, churches, museums, libraries, military installations, YMCA’s, expositions, and department stores.

This flexible, durable, and efficient way of delivery all manner of audio-visual content proved to be an eminently useful, multi-purpose technology, regularly deployed as an instructional or merchandising tool for delivering public service messages and public relations campaigns, boosting church attendance, preaching good “social hygiene,” promoting political candidates, spreading propaganda, and encouraging community dialogue. 16mm was likewise widely adopted as a means of documenting social ills, capturing local news events, recording scientific experiments, circulating sexually explicit content, and enlivening the teaching of virtually every subject in primary schools and colleges alike. The vast range of 16mm films produced and circulated by professionals and non-professionals for countless different uses and audiences constitutes a remarkable and largely untapped historical resource, a rich and often surprising moving image record covering more than fifty years of the twentieth century.

A Century of 16mm aims to be a wide-ranging, inclusive event, including keynote presentations, workshops, panels, and screenings of archival and newly commissioned films, as well as an exhibit of 16mm technology.  We encourage proposals from scholars, filmmakers, and archivists (or any combination thereof!) considering any aspect of the international history of 16mm cinema.

Please note that we have also added filmmaking workshops (on 16mm film) during the two days leading up to the conference.


  *   Gregory A. Waller, Provost Professor, Cinema and Media Studies, the Media School, Indiana University
  *   Rachael Stoeltje, Director Indiana University Libraries Moving Image Archive; President AMIA (Association of Moving Image Archivists)

And of course if you have questions, you can email us at [log in to unmask] and [log in to unmask]

News release here:

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