Login | Register

Cultural continuity and technological indeterminacy: itinerant 16mm film exhibition in Canada, 1918-1949

Title:

Cultural continuity and technological indeterminacy: itinerant 16mm film exhibition in Canada, 1918-1949

Lester, Peter (2008) Cultural continuity and technological indeterminacy: itinerant 16mm film exhibition in Canada, 1918-1949. PhD thesis, Concordia University.

[img]
Preview
Text (application/pdf)
NR45670.pdf - Accepted Version
5MB

Abstract

This thesis charts the parallel historical trajectories of itinerant, non-theatrical forms of film exhibition practice and of 16mm projection technology, throughout the interwar years in Canada and into the post-World War II context. I argue that these two entities - a technology and a practice - developed in symbiosis with one another, and subsequently need to be understood in terms of this relationship. The cultural practice of traveling exhibition has often been considered a relic of the "early cinema" era, the first decade of the medium's development. It is a practice that was generally assumed to have long since perished in Canada, only to have been resuscitated in 1942 by the National Film Board. This thesis argues instead that itinerant film exhibition never actually ceased to exist in Canada, and that it in fact persisted, with varying degrees of frequency, throughout the interwar period, effectively demonstrating a continuity of screen practice that is generally not widely acknowledged. Concurrent to this, I argue that 16mm technology, although introduced as a medium for amateur employment and for exhibition in the domestic space, quickly charted an additional evolutionary tract, which in turn facilitated these numerous and varied traveling cinema operations. This thesis demonstrates that this was not an historical development that was by any means predetermined, nor was it met with enthusiasm by all sectors of the film industry. Discursive practices circulated within the industry and regulatory actions implemented by various levels of government attempted to both frame and contain the technology and its employment in non-theatrical arenas, but due to this involvement, they also served to legitimize and normalize them. The resulting narrative is at heart, therefore, essentially one of both technological indeterminacy but also of cultural continuity.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Communication Studies
Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Authors:Lester, Peter
Pagination:vi, 294 leaves : ill. ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Ph. D.
Program:Communication Studies
Date:2008
Thesis Supervisor(s):Acland, Charles
ID Code:975219
Deposited By: Concordia University Library
Deposited On:22 Jan 2013 15:44
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:39
Related URLs:
All items in Spectrum are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved. The use of items is governed by Spectrum's terms of access.

Repository Staff Only: item control page

Downloads per month over past year

Research related to the current document (at the CORE website)
- Research related to the current document (at the CORE website)
Back to top Back to top