The Second Birth of Cinema: A Centenary Conference (1-2 July 1911; 30 Sept 2010)

full name / name of organization: 
Andrew Shail
contact email: 
a.e.shail@ncl.ac.uk

*The Second Birth of Cinema: A Centenary Conference*
Percy Building, Newcastle University, 1-2 July 2011
Keynote speakers: André Gaudreault & Philippe Marion, Ian Christie, Joe Kember
Deadline for abstracts: 30 September 2010

This conference commemorates cinema’s ‘second birth’, the historical developments and departures that broke cinema’s subordination to other media to give us the medium, the industry and the building that we know as ‘the cinema’.

If, as André Gaudreault and Philippe Marion have recently insisted, cinema was born once as a technology and then again as a medium, just when and how did this occur? What caused film practice, the film business and film discourse all to generate a media identity for cinema? How did we get from ‘animated photography’ to ‘the pictures’?

Possible questions to consider:
Was cinema’s ‘second birth’ a radical short-term event or a gradual and imperceptible change? What was the most significant cause? Was this ‘second birth’ a matter of maturation or deliberate manipulation? What people and organisations were most instrumental in bringing it about, and how did it vary from country to country? How extensively was cinema’s audience contract re-written? What kinds of genealogies were invented for cinema, what genealogies were forgotten, and what genealogies were actively disavowed? Was cinema drafted into bourgeois culture, or did it fashion its own unique identity? Did this period create a lasting identity card for cinema, or were third and fourth births still to come? How did contemporaries register this change? How early did the process of reinventing cinema begin, and when, if ever, did it end? And what date stands out as the watershed? Indeed, was 2011 a good choice for the centennial year?

Abstracts are invited for 20-minute papers on any aspect of this ‘event’ in any part of the world. Please send abstracts, by email attachment, to Andrew Shail at a.e.shail@ncl.ac.uk, with the subject line ‘Second Birth of Cinema’, by the 30th of September 2010.

cfp categories: 
cultural_studies_and_historical_approaches
film_and_television
interdisciplinary
twentieth_century_and_beyond
victorian