The Tenth Muse: Writing about Cinema in the Modernist Period

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9780199230273: The Tenth Muse: Writing about Cinema in the Modernist Period

The Tenth Muse explores writings on the cinema in the first decades of the twentieth century. Laura Marcus examines the impact of cinema on early twentieth-century literary and, more broadly, aesthetic and cultural consciousness, by bringing together the study of the terms and strategies of early writings about film with literary engagement with cinema in the same period. She gives a new understanding of the ways in which early writers about film - reviewers, critics, theorists - developed aesthetic categories to define and accommodate what was called 'the seventh art' or 'the tenth muse' and found discursive strategies adequate to the representation of the new art and technology of cinema, with its unprecedented powers of movement.

In examining the writings of early film critics and commentators in tandem with those of more specifically literary figures, including H.G.Wells and Virginia Woolf, and in bringing literary texts into this field, Laura Marcus provides a new account of relationships between cinema and literature. Intertwining two major strands of research - the exploration of early film criticism and theory and cinema's presence in literary texts - The Tenth Muse shows how issues central to an understanding of cinema (including questions of time, repetition, movement, vision, sound and silence) are threaded through both kinds of writing, and the ways in which discursive and fictional writings overlapped.

The movement that defined cinema was also perceived as a more fragile and unstable ephemerality that inhered at every level, from the fleeting nature of the projected images to the vagaries of cinematic exhibition. It was the anxiety over the mutability of the medium and its exhibition which, from the 1920s onwards, led to the establishment of such institutional spaces for cinema as the London-based Film Society, the new film journals, and, in the 1930s, the first film archives. The Tenth Muse explores the continuities between these sites of cinematic culture and the conceptual, literary and philosophical understandings of the filmic medium.

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About the Author:


Laura Marcus took up the post of Regius Professor of Rhetoric and English Literature at the University of Edinburgh in 2007. She was previously Professor of English at the University of Sussex. She has published widely on nineteenth- and twentieth-century literature and culture, with a number of books and articles in the fields of autobiography and biography, twentieth-century literature, modernism, psychoanalysis, and cinema.

Review:

The Tenth Muse provides a compelling chronicle of a versatile and vivid 'engagement with some of the central dimensions of the film medium' * David Trotter, Screen * this wide-ranging book is a stimulating survey of the evolving connections between the moving image and the written word. * Simon Cooper, The Financial Times Magazine * a rich and detailed survey of early film writing... an illuminating book * Muriel Zagha, Times Literary Supplement * a comprehensive account of the ways in which the turn-of-the century aesthetic thought that culminated in modernism...was turned on film following the emergence of the feature film * Andrew Shail, Modern Language Review * a lively account of moving images on a wide range of writers and critics in the first three decades of the 20th century * Caroline Maclean, London Review of Books *

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Book Description Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2008. Hardback. Book Condition: New. New. Language: English . Brand New Book. The Tenth Muse explores writings on the cinema in the first decades of the twentieth century. Laura Marcus examines the impact of cinema on early twentieth-century literary and, more broadly, aesthetic and cultural consciousness, by bringing together the study of the terms and strategies of early writings about film with literary engagement with cinema in the same period. She gives a new understanding of the ways in which early writers about film - reviewers, critics, theorists - developed aesthetic categories to define and accommodate what was called the seventh art or the tenth muse and found discursive strategies adequate to the representation of the new art and technology of cinema, with its unprecedented powers of movement. In examining the writings of early film critics and commentators in tandem with those of more specifically literary figures, including H.G.Wells and Virginia Woolf, and in bringing literary texts into this field, Laura Marcus provides a new account of relationships between cinema and literature. Intertwining two major strands of research - the exploration of early film criticism and theory and cinema s presence in literary texts - The Tenth Muse shows how issues central to an understanding of cinema (including questions of time, repetition, movement, vision, sound and silence) are threaded through both kinds of writing, and the ways in which discursive and fictional writings overlapped. The movement that defined cinema was also perceived as a more fragile and unstable ephemerality that inhered at every level, from the fleeting nature of the projected images to the vagaries of cinematic exhibition. It was the anxiety over the mutability of the medium and its exhibition which, from the 1920s onwards, led to the establishment of such institutional spaces for cinema as the London-based Film Society, the new film journals, and, in the 1930s, the first film archives. The Tenth Muse explores the continuities between these sites of cinematic culture and the conceptual, literary and philosophical understandings of the filmic medium. Bookseller Inventory # AOP9780199230273

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Book Description Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2008. Hardback. Book Condition: New. New. Language: English . Brand New Book. The Tenth Muse explores writings on the cinema in the first decades of the twentieth century. Laura Marcus examines the impact of cinema on early twentieth-century literary and, more broadly, aesthetic and cultural consciousness, by bringing together the study of the terms and strategies of early writings about film with literary engagement with cinema in the same period. She gives a new understanding of the ways in which early writers about film - reviewers, critics, theorists - developed aesthetic categories to define and accommodate what was called the seventh art or the tenth muse and found discursive strategies adequate to the representation of the new art and technology of cinema, with its unprecedented powers of movement. In examining the writings of early film critics and commentators in tandem with those of more specifically literary figures, including H.G.Wells and Virginia Woolf, and in bringing literary texts into this field, Laura Marcus provides a new account of relationships between cinema and literature. Intertwining two major strands of research - the exploration of early film criticism and theory and cinema s presence in literary texts - The Tenth Muse shows how issues central to an understanding of cinema (including questions of time, repetition, movement, vision, sound and silence) are threaded through both kinds of writing, and the ways in which discursive and fictional writings overlapped. The movement that defined cinema was also perceived as a more fragile and unstable ephemerality that inhered at every level, from the fleeting nature of the projected images to the vagaries of cinematic exhibition. It was the anxiety over the mutability of the medium and its exhibition which, from the 1920s onwards, led to the establishment of such institutional spaces for cinema as the London-based Film Society, the new film journals, and, in the 1930s, the first film archives. The Tenth Muse explores the continuities between these sites of cinematic culture and the conceptual, literary and philosophical understandings of the filmic medium. Bookseller Inventory # AOP9780199230273

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