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White slave films, dramas documenting sex scandals, filmed prize fights featuring the controversial African-American boxer Jack Johnson, D. Lee Grieveson draws on extensive original research to examine the controversies over these films and over cinema more generally. He situates these contestations in the context of regulatory concerns about populations and governance in an early-twentieth-century America grappling with the powerful forces of modernity, in particular, immigration, class formation and conflict, and changing gender roles.

Project MUSE - Policing Cinema: Movies and Censorship in Early Twentieth Century America (review)

Tracing the discourses and practices of cultural and political elites and the responses of the nascent film industry, Grieveson reveals how these interactions had profound effects on the shaping of film content, form, and, more fundamentally, the proposed social function of cinema: Policing Cinema develops new perspectives for the understanding of censorship and regulation and the complex relations between governance and culture.

In this work, Grieveson offers a compelling analysis of the forces that shaped American cinema and its role in society. Read more Read less. Add both to Cart Add both to List. One of these items ships sooner than the other. Buy the selected items together This item: Ships from and sold by Amazon. Customers who bought this item also bought. Page 1 of 1 Start over Page 1 of 1.

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History and the Media. News War Over Hong Kong. American Images of China, Contemporary Perspectives in Cultural Studies. Sponsored products related to this item What's this? Defining Moments in Black History: Reading Between the Lies. Policing Cinema should prove to be a seminal work for students of the American movie and culture. If you would like to authenticate using a different subscribed institution that supports Shibboleth authentication or have your own login and password to Project MUSE, click 'Authenticate'.

View freely available titles: Book titles OR Journal titles. Project MUSE promotes the creation and dissemination of essential humanities and social science resources through collaboration with libraries, publishers, and scholars worldwide. Forged from a partnership between a university press and a library, Project MUSE is a trusted part of the academic and scholarly community it serves.

Policing cinema: movies and censorship in early-twentieth-century America

Built on the Johns Hopkins University Campus. This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless. In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content: Charles Wukasch Chasmwuk aol. But the narrative strategies they used were very different — the former slipping from general exposition to specific fictional narrative, while the latter kept to a documentary-style.

Grieveson sees these two films, then, as representing both sides of a divide that became increasingly fixed — between the educational film and the entertainment film.

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For instance, classical narrative became the standard for feature-length films, and the feature film became the standard in commercial cinemas precisely over this period. However, we are never told the length of any of the films being discussed. I know that the white slave films discussed here were both standard feature length. I would have liked more discussion of this and other aspects of the classical narrative form. Except for these questions to do with classical film form, the final chapter ties the elements together in a survey of developments after It shows how economic changes the growth of vertically integrated companies affected and were affected by changes in censorship a shift away from national to state regulation, and from government regulation to industry self-regulation.


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It is this attempt to tie together all the various aspects of the development of film that is new and admirable in this book. It requires a concentration on a limited period of film history, but allows a detailed examination of this short period.