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World Film History to 1945

ENGL 091.601
instructor(s):
fulfills requirements:
Sector 6: 20th Century Literature of the Standard Major

This course surveys the history of world film from cinema’s precursors to
1945. We will develop methods for analyzing film while examining the growth
of film as an art, an industry, and a political instrument. The course
begins with the emergence of film technology and early film audiences. We
will then look at the rise of narrative film and the birth of Hollywood
before turning to a number of national film industries that flourished
after World War I, including French, Italian, Soviet, German, Japanese,
Chinese, and Indian film. Along the way, we will look at different genres
and topics including African-American independent film during the silent
era, animation, ethnographic and documentary film, censorship, and the
coming of sound. We conclude with the transformation of several film
industries into propaganda tools during World War II (including the Nazi,
Soviet, and US film industries). There are no prerequisites. Requirements
include a short essay, a research project, a midterm, and a final. Fulfills
the Arts and Letters Sector (All Classes).