Search results

Abstract only
Sam Rohdie

Melodrama Visconti worked in theatre, lyric opera and film. In each of these pursuits, though especially in theatre and lyric opera, he put into play (put into scene) a pre-existing text. In theatre, these texts were ancient (Shakespeare), relatively recent (Chekhov, Strindberg), or contemporary (Cocteau, Anouilh, Miller, Williams). What was interesting in these theatrical productions were their visual, spectacular aspects (decor, lighting, costume, gesture), no matter what the period from which they came. Visconti sought to find visual and sound equivalents for

in Film modernism
Mandy Merck

passed before Judith Williamson challenged Muggeridge by claiming that this celebrity melodrama could actually serve the Crown and the ideology of national unity that it represents. Writing just after the protracted strike that failed to halt the closure of Britain’s coal mines in 1984, Williamson observed that the pitmen’s wives sought the Queen’s support for their cause in the belief that she cared

in The British monarchy on screen
John Gibbs

6 Melodrama and mise-­en-­scène Considered as an expressive code, melodrama might therefore be described as a particular form of mise-­en-­scène, characterised by a dynamic use of spatial and musical categories, as opposed to intellectual and literary ones.1 This suggestion, from Thomas Elsaesser’s extraordinary article ‘Tales of Sound and Fury: observations on the family melodrama’, recognises a particularly strong relationship between mise-­en-­scène and melodrama. In the early 1970s, writing on melodrama provided some of the richest expressions of mise

in The life of mise-en-scène
Christophe Wall-Romana

2 Avant-garde working-class melodramas In the previous chapter, we discovered the broad conceptual range of Epstein’s master word, photogénie. What it seeks to link are: the embodiment of the viewer and the actors; the cinema apparatus as positive and ethical mediation (compared to Walter Benjamin’s aura-damaging mediation); and a paradoxical aesthetics at once avant-garde and utterly modernist, and rearguard in insisting that sensorial experiencing in the cinema remains haunted by the ghost of Symbolism. This complexity explains how easy it has been for

in Jean Epstein
Brian McFarlane and Deane Williams

While one of the distinguishing characteristics of Winterbottom’s oeuvre is his way of taking recognised genres and treating them in idiosyncratic ways, some of his work defies easy categorisation. A film such as Go Now , made for television but shown in cinemas in some countries, is a case in point: it exhibits some of the informing traits of melodrama but its treatment is in certain essentials

in Michael Winterbottom
Paul Henley

culturally exotic subject matter produced by the Edison and Lumière production companies, I consider how two commercial entertainment genres – the travel film and the melodrama set in an exotic location – constituted the cinematic crucible out of which emerged three films that are often referred to as major milestones in the history of ethnographic film: Grass , In the Land of the Head Hunters and, most important of all, Nanook of the North

in Beyond observation
Melodrama, Mystery, and the Nightmare of History in Jessie Fauset‘s Plum Bun
Charles Scruggs

This essay discusses how African-American novelist Jessie Fauset used the Gothic motif of a hidden history to critique the melodramatic happy ending of her best novel, one set in New York city in the 1920s. What undermines the ‘moral legibility’ of melodrama is the Gothic implications of an unsolved crime in the past, one that, ironically, continues to haunts the ‘New Negro’ of the Harlem Renaissance who claims to have reinvented him or herself in the modern city.

Gothic Studies
The Case of Mary Ashford and the Cultural Context of Late-Regency Melodrama
David Worrall

This paper examines the historical context of the publication and reception of three dramas related to the murder of a gardener‘s daughter, Mary Ashford in Sutton Coldfield in 1817. George Ludlam‘s The Mysterious Murder was countered by a play called The Murdered Maid whose anonymous author is likely to have been a local clergyman. Both plays were locally written and published. When the case reached a national arena, John Kerr‘s Presumptive Guilt provided a London-based comment on the case. The paper examines the relationship between these metropolitan and provincial print cultures and the way in which dramatic form was used as a mode of mediation between public and legal discourse.

Gothic Studies
Matthew Lewis‘s The Castle Spectre
James Robert Allard

The Castle Spectre was one of the most popular and successful theatrical events of its day, and critics have often tried to explain its success, usually appealing to the ‘spectacular’ appearance of the spectre herself. But critics have not explored how the spectre - certainly no novelty on the stage - caused such a stir among contemporary audiences. By examining a selection of reviews, comments by contemporary literary figures, the text of the play, and Lewis‘s own comments concerning his spectacle, this paper demonstrates how Lewis employs strategies of delay and misdirection to make an otherwise nonviolent and unspectacular play appear excessively violent and spectacular even by 1790s Gothic standards.

Gothic Studies
Abstract only
Colonial Structures and the Gothic Genre in Contemporary Puerto Rican Narrative
Sandra M. Casanova-Vizcaíno

This article analyses the representation of several colonial structures in the Caribbean reconfiguration of the Gothic genre, specifically in two works of contemporary Puerto Ricanfiction: Miss Florences Trunk: Fragments for a Romantic Trash Novel (1991) by Ana Lydia Vega and Over My Dead Body (2012) by Marta Aponte Alsina. In these novellas, specifically through the main characters reading of diaries and confessions, we are presented with a description of the physical structures. At the same time, the colonial structure also emerges, a context in which slavery, sexual abuse and mulataje are described as ubiquitous sources of terror.

Gothic Studies