The Silent Age—1896–1926



This chapter explores the cinematic representation of horseracing from its earliest motion-picture footage through to the inception of the quota system, tracing how the drive to capture the sport’s excitement encouraged artistic and technological innovation. It traces how horseracing proved the catalyst for perfecting and popularising the new medium, while early shorts, comic in tone but moral in conclusion, established enduring criminal tropes, from welshing bookmakers to nobbled horses. Alongside such fixed textual templates, the genre was secured by a contextual consistency, featuring a ‘stable’ of studios, writers, actors and directors, most notably in the aspirational turf pictures of the prolific Walter West.


Silent cinema Sporting comedy Walter West 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.De Montfort UniversityLeicesterUK

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