Classical Hollywood Narrative

The Paradigm Wars

Classical Hollywood Narrative
Book Pages: 360 Illustrations: 10 illustrations Published: October 1992

Subjects
American Studies, Cultural Studies, Media Studies > Film

Since the 1970s film studies has been dominated by a basic paradigm—the concept of classical Hollywood cinema—that is, the protagonist-driven narrative, valued for the way it achieves closure by neatly answering all of the enigmas it raises. It has been held to be a form so powerful that its aesthetic devices reinforce gender positions in society. In a variety of ways, the essays collected here—representing the work of some of the most innovative theorists writing today—challenge this paradigm.
Significantly expanded from a special issue of South Atlantic Quarterly (Spring 1989), these essays confront the extent to which formalism has continued to dominate film theory, reexamine the role of melodrama in cinematic development, revise notions of "patriarchal cinema," and assert the importance of television and video to cinema studies. A range of topics are discussed, from the films of D. W. Griffith to sexuality in avant-garde film to television's Dynasty.

Contributors. Rick Altman, Richard Dienst, Jane Feuer, Jane Gaines, Christine Gledhill, Miriam Hansen, Norman N. Holland, Fredric Jameson, Bill Nichols, Janey Staiger, Chris Straayer, John O. Thompson

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Jane Gaines is Associate Professor of English and Literature and Director of the Film and Video Program at Duke University. She is the author of Contested Culture: The Image, the Voice, and the Law.

Table of Contents Back to Top
Introduction: The Family Melodrama of Classical Narrative Cinema/ Jane M. Gaines 1

Dickens, Griffith, and Film Theory Today/ Rick Altman 9

Form Wars: The Political Unconscious of Formalist Theory/ Bill Nichols 49

Film Response from Eye to I: The Kuleshov Experiement/ Norman N. Holland 79

Securing the Fictional Narrative as a Tale of the Historical Real: The Return of Martin Guerre/ Janet Staiger 107

Between Melodrama and Realism: Anthony Asquith's Underground and King Vidor's The Crowd/ Christine Gledhill 129

The Hieroglyph and the Whore: D.W. Griffith's Intolerance/ Miriam Hansen 169

The She-Man: Postmodern Bi-Sexed Performance in Film and Video/ Chris Straayer 203

Dead Ringer: Jacqueline Onassis and the Look-Alike/ Jane Gaines 227

Nostalgia for the Present/ Fredric Jameson 253

Reading Dynasty: Television and Reception Theory/ Jane Feuer 275

Dialogues of the Living Dead/ John O. Thompson 295

Image/ Machine/ Image: On the Use and Abuse of Marx and Metaphor in Television Theory/ Richard Dienst 313

Notes on Contributors 341

Index 345
Sales/Territorial Rights: World

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Paper ISBN: 978-0-8223-1299-4 / Cloth ISBN: 978-0-8223-1276-5
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