Dear SCREEN Subscribers,
We would like to announce a new publication from Duke University Press, which we hope will be of interest.
Paris in the Dark
Going to the Movies in the City of Light, 1930–1950
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“Eric Smoodin is a delightful guide to Parisian movie theaters as they shaped the filmgoing experience in the decades of the 1930s and 1940s, from the coming of sound to the somber years of the German Occupation to the postwar efforts to rebuild film culture. Paris in the Dark is an outstanding study of the spaces and places of Parisian filmgoing and a major contribution to French film studies.”—Judith Mayne, author of Le Corbeau
“This meticulously researched study of French film exhibition charts the shifts in film culture during the early sound period, the German Occupation, and the postwar reconstruction. Eric Smoodin crafts a fascinating, street-level history of film culture through a savvy use of primary sources, industry surveys of spectators, and government studies. Enriched with case studies about stardom, ciné-clubs, and the rise of fascist violence, this book reminds us of the vitality and fragility of French film culture.”—Kelley Conway, author of Chanteuse in the City: The Realist Singer in French Film
In Paris in the Dark Eric Smoodin takes readers on a journey through the streets, cinemas, and theaters of Paris to sketch a comprehensive picture of French film culture during the 1930s and 1940s. Drawing on a wealth of journalistic sources, Smoodin recounts the ways films moved through the city, the favored stars, and what it was like to go to the movies in a city with hundreds of cinemas. In a single week in the early 1930s, moviegoers might see Hollywood features like King Kong and Frankenstein, the new Marlene Dietrich and Maurice Chevalier movies, and any number of films from Italy, Germany, and Russia. Or they could frequent the city’s ciné-clubs, which were hosts to the cinéphile subcultures of Paris. At other times, a night at the movies might result in an evening of fascist violence, even before the German Occupation of Paris, while after the war the city’s cinemas formed the space for reconsolidating French film culture. In mapping the cinematic geography of Paris, Smoodin expands understandings of local film exhibition and the relationships of movies to urban space.
Eric Smoodin is Professor of American Studies at the University of California, Davis, and author of Regarding Frank Capra: Audience, Celebrity, and American Film Studies, 1930–1960, and coeditor of Looking Past the Screen: Case Studies in American Film History and Method, both also published by Duke University Press.
With all best wishes,
Combined Academic Publishers
Duke University Press | March 2020 | 224pp | 9781478006923 | PB | £20.99*
*Price subject to change.
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