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December 1994, Week 4


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Jeremy Butler <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 23 Dec 1994 14:59:32 CST
text/plain (37 lines)
Author:  Kellner <[log in to unmask]>
Date:    12/23/94 3:56 AM
[Editor's note:  This message was submitted to SCREEN-L by the "Author" noted
above, and not by Jeremy Butler ([log in to unmask]).]
This might be a bit out of the _film pioneers_-subject-line, mainly
because I personally have no interest in joining the _who did what
Anyway: Speaking of early cinema, I was wondering whether somebody
ever had a close look on how cinema was introduced in non-European,
non-US countries. I have mainly India on my mind, where the first film-
show took place on July 7th, 1896. The chronicle of film introduction in
India has been written, information is published, but apart from some
in-depth articles written by Ashish Rajadhyaksha, I cannot think of
somebody who actually investigated the _customarization_ (is that
English, BTW?) of a new medium to the requirements of a specific
cultural tradition (in this case, Indian). Moreover, the imagery which
appears in the first Indian (_genuinely_ Indian) films (first feature film
in 1913, but, here again, the _first_ is arguable) is quite telling, insofar as
it was not mainly _indigenous_ visual styles that were used (Ajanta,
Ellora and the rest of it), but already _hybridized_ visual worlds, which were,
as far as my sources go, heavily influenced by British painting.
 [A [A [A [A [B [BI would be seriously interested to know how the introduction
 of film in
other, especially Asian, countries proceeded - especially, what predecessors
of the dramatic arts of the respective countries were used in the first
indigenous film productions etc.
Birgit Kellner
Institute for Indian Philosophy
University of Hiroshima