History on Film/Film on History (2nd Edition) (History: by Robert A. Rosenstone

By Robert A. Rosenstone

History on Film/Film on historical past demonstrates how movies might be analyzed as historic assets. It bargains undergraduates an advent to a few of the 1st matters concerned with learning old motion pictures.
Rosenstone argues that to go away heritage motion pictures out of the dialogue of the which means of the prior is to disregard a significant component in our knowing of earlier occasions. He examines what historical past motion pictures exhibit in regards to the earlier and the way they impart it, demonstrating the necessity to methods to learn and comprehend this new visible global. This re-creation locations this 'classic' textual content within the context of labor performed somewhere else within the box over the 10 years considering that this ebook first released, and support to resume the identify for a brand new iteration of undergraduates.

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Extra resources for History on Film/Film on History (2nd Edition) (History: Concepts, Theories and Practice)

Sample text

The major way we experience – or imagine we experience – the past on the screen is obviously through our eye. We see bodies, faces, landscapes, buildings, animals, tools, implements, weapons, clothing, furniture, all the material objects that belong to a culture at a given historical period, objects that are used and misused, ignored and cherished, objects that sometimes can help to define livelihoods, identities, and destinies. Such objects, which the camera demands in order to make a scene look ‘real’, and which written history can easily, and usually does, ignore, are part of the texture and the factuality of the world on film.

And film, why that’s just entertainment, a diversion from the serious business of life, one of the places we go in an attempt to escape the sorts of social and political problems which fill the pages of our newspapers and those same history books. Sure, films set stories in the past, but these are romances, simple-minded tales of good guys, bad guys, and beautiful heroines. They have nothing to do with the serious world of events and developments described in books. Motion pictures are all about making a reputation for the director and the stars and money for the production companies.

But – and here a radical new notion begins to emerge – Ferro then admits that there are exceptions to this rule. A few directors (he names Andrei Tarkovsky, of Russia; Ousmane Sembene, Senegal; Hans Jurgen Syberberg, Germany; Luchino Visconti, Italy; and a group of Polish film-makers) possess such strong historical visions that they are able to transcend the ideological forces and traditions of their countries. Such film-makers create independent interpretations of history and thereby make ‘an original contribution to the understanding of past phenomena and their relation to the present’ (Ferro 1988: 158–64).

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