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A Pedagogical Impulse: Noncommercial Film Cultures in Spain (1931-1936)


A Pedagogical Impulse: Noncommercial Film Cultures in Spain (1931-1936)

Fibla Gutierrez, Enrique (2018) A Pedagogical Impulse: Noncommercial Film Cultures in Spain (1931-1936). PhD thesis, Concordia University.

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This dissertation analyzes noncommercial film culture in Spain during the Second Spanish Republic (1931-1936), focusing on the pedagogical efforts of film criticism, nontheatrical, educational, amateur, and political filmmaking, as well as institutional developments associated with these movements. In this short and intense period of time the country experienced unprecedented social transformations and heightened participation of citizens in the public sphere through mass media and cultural initiatives. The images of ecstatic crowds celebrating the advent of the Republic on April 14th, 1931, are a testament to the hopes that the new era brought to those that wanted to break with the country’s unequal and corrupt old order. But it was also a time of unstable governments, resistance to democratic change and social justice, and political radicalization that found a tragic end in the Civil War provoked by Francisco Franco’s failed coup d’état in July 18, 1936.
The emergence, international consolidation, and lasting effects of noncommercial film culture amidst this incredibly convulsive and complex context are the subject of the thesis. In its four chapters I examine the use of film as a tool for cultural and social progress in a country that was avidly looking for new models of political organization and modernization. Specifically, I look at the appeal of Soviet cinema and Socialist modernity for Spanish intellectuals and filmmakers and the influence that this radical film culture had in the later production of propaganda films during the Civil War; the materialist translation of the avant-garde into Spain through transnational networks of film education and critical spectatorship epitomized in the journal Nuestro Cinema created by Juan Piqueras in 1932; the participation of Catalan amateur filmmakers in the emergent international amateur film movement that organized its first international congress in 1935 in Barcelona; and the institutionalization of cinema into state film policies, geopolitical initiatives, and educational programs by the Spanish and Catalan governments during the 1930s.
The aim of the dissertation is, then, to include the Spanish context into 1930s film scholarship, from which it has been largely excluded, showing how it can illuminate new perspectives on the relationship between cinema and modernity, the emergence of film culture, the avant-garde, film education, institutionalization and cinema beyond the commercial screen.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Fine Arts > Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema
Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Authors:Fibla Gutierrez, Enrique
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Ph. D.
Program:Film and Moving Image Studies
Date:September 2018
Thesis Supervisor(s):Salazkina, Masha
Keywords:Film Culture, Noncommercial Cinema, Spain, Interwar Period, Modernity, Film History, Amateur, Amateur Cinema, Radical Film, Institutional Film, Film Policy, Second Spanish Republic, Juan Piqueras, Film Criticism, Soviet Modernity, Soviet Cinema, Transnational, Pedagogy, Educational Cinema, Harry Alan Potamkin, Léon Moussinac.
ID Code:984651
Deposited On:10 Jun 2019 15:02
Last Modified:10 Jun 2019 15:02
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