Brigitte Flickinger1
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  • 1 Heidelberg University
Cinemas in the City
Berlin‘s Public Space in the 1910s and 1920s
in Film Studies
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In the early years of the cinema and into the 1910s and 1920s, it was less the film than cinema-going itself that attracted urban publics. In this era, people were enthusiastic about technology and the achievements of modernity; while at the same time they felt anxious about the rapid and radical changes in their social and economic life. In Germany, this contradictory experience was especially harsh and perceptible in the urban metropolis of Berlin. The article demonstrates how within city life, Berlin cinemas – offering the excitement of innovation as well as optimal distraction and entertainment – provided an urban space where, by cinema-going, appeal and uncertainty could be positively reconciled.

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