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Genre, Aesthetics and Criticism

  • Duncan J. Petrie

Abstract

There are other factors which contribute to the structuring of the film-making process which are also worth examining. These include aesthetic and cultural factors which are less tangible than issues of finance and technology but are just as significant nonetheless. The aesthetic domain embraces those resources constituted by the techniques of cinema — modes of narration, mise-en-scène, montage and so on — which any film-maker can draw upon in the course of their work. It is through the utilisation of such aesthetic resources that film-makers establish an active communication, in Williams’s sense,1 with their audience. These resources are related to technological resources such as cameras, lenses, film stock, lighting, editing and dubbing facilities. Consequently, the individual film-maker is afforded a wide range of aesthetic and technical possibilities from which to draw upon.

Keywords

Theatrical Tradition Social Drama Television Drama Sunday Morning American Cinema 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes

  1. 1.
    Raymond Williams, The Long Revolution (Harmondsworth: Pelican, 1965), Chapter 1: ‘The Creative Mind’.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Christine Gledhill, ‘History of Genre Criticism’ in Pam Cook (ed.), The Cinema Book (London: BFI, 1985), p. 58.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    The first critical study to use the term film noir was Raymond Borde and Etienne Chaumerton’s Panorame du Film Noir Americain (Paris) 1955.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Leo Braudy, ‘Genre. The Conventions of Connection’ in Gerald Mast and Marshall Cohen (eds), Film Theory and Criticism, 3rd Edition (New York: Oxford University Press, 1984), p. 415.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Edward Buscombe, ‘The Idea of Genre in American Cinema’, in Barry K. Grant (ed.) Film Genre: Theory and Criticism, (Metuchen, NJ: Scarecrow Press, 1977), p. 34.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Tom Ryall, Alfred Hitchcock and the British Cinema (London: Croom Helm, 1986), p. 73.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    See John Hill, Sex, Class and Realism (London: BFI, 1986).Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Andy Medhurst, ‘Music Hall and British Cinema’ in Charles Barr (ed.), All Our Yesterdays, (London: BFI, 1986).Google Scholar
  9. 10.
    See Charles Barr, Ealing Studios (London: Cameron & Tayleur, 1977).Google Scholar
  10. 12.
    Ian Christie, ‘The Scandal of Peeping Tom’ in Powell, Pressburger and Others (London: BFI, 1978).Google Scholar
  11. 13.
    Alexander Walker, Hollywood England (London: Harrap, 1986).Google Scholar
  12. 17.
    Martyn Auty, ‘But is it Cinema?’ in Auty and Nick Roddick (eds), British Cinema Now (London: BFI, 1985).Google Scholar
  13. 20.
    Roy Armes, A Critical History of British Cinema (London: Secker & Warburg, 1978), p. 333.Google Scholar
  14. 25.
    Christine Gledhill, ‘The Melodramatic Field: An Investigation’ in Gledhill (ed.), Home Is Where the Heart Is: Studies in Melodrama and the Woman’s Film (London: BFI, 1987).Google Scholar
  15. 27.
    James Park, Learning to Dream: The New British Cinema (London: Faber & Faber, 1984).Google Scholar
  16. 28.
    Important texts include Sue Aspinall and Robert Murphy(eds), Gainsborough Melodrama (London: BFI Dossier, 1983); several of the essays in Barr (ed.), All Our Yesterdays, particularly Charles Barr: ‘Schizophrenia and Amnesia’ and Julien Petley: The Lost Continent’;Google Scholar
  17. Ian Christie, Powell, Pressburger and Others (London: BFI, 1978);Google Scholar
  18. David Pirie: A Heritage of Horror (London: Gordon Fraser, 1973).Google Scholar
  19. 32.
    George Orwell, ‘Charles Dickens’ in Collected Essays (London: Secker & Warburg, 1961), p. 75.Google Scholar
  20. 49.
    John Ellis, Visible Fictions (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1982), p. 24.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Duncan J. Petrie 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Duncan J. Petrie
    • 1
  1. 1.University of EdinburghUK

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