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October 1993


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Rick Francis <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 5 Oct 1993 11:25:16 -0500
text/plain (33 lines)
I just read a provocative article by Andrew Britton:
Britton, Andrew.  "The Philosophy of the Pigeonhole:  Wisconsin
Formalism and 'The Classical Style'."  CineAction!  15  (Winter
1988-89):  47-63.
I would call it an intelligent but unnecessarily vicious attack on the
theoretical underpinnings of this book:
Bordwell, David; Janet Staiger; and Kristin Thompson.  The Classical
Hollywood Cinema:  Film Style and Mode of Production to 1960.   New
York:  Columbia UP, 1985.
Britton is not merely interested in scoring points off Bordwell et al,
because he is attacking what he sees as a certain naivete in film studies,
of which that book is merely a well-developed example.  Without going into
the pros and cons of his views (I think he's a bit unfair in using that
book to represent the evil, though he has some powerful and memorable
means to dismember it), I wonder if anyone knows where and what he teaches?
At the beginning of the piece he says it is "an extract from a forthcoming
book entitled Reading Hollywood...", and this article was published 3
years ago.   Yet I can find no record of any such book, or anything
similar-sounding, published by Britton since then.  Can anyone help me
out?  I'm curious to see how he presents in practice what he presents in
theory in the article.
Rick Francis, Dept of Comparative Literature
Box 1077; Washington University
One Brookings Drive; St. Louis, MO  63130
Internet:  [log in to unmask]