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By Deborah Barker

Employing recommendations in media reports, southern cultural stories, and techniques to the worldwide South, this number of essays examines elements of the southern imaginary in American cinema and gives clean perception into the evolving box of southern movie studies.

In their creation, Deborah Barker and Kathryn McKee argue that the southern imaginary in movie isn't contained by means of the bounds of geography and style; it isn't an offshoot or subgenre of mainstream American movie yet is crucial to the background and the advance of yank cinema.

Ranging from the silent period to the current and contemplating Hollywood video clips, documentaries, and self reliant movies, the members include the newest scholarship in a number of disciplines. the amount is split into 3 sections: “Rereading the South” makes use of new severe views to re-examine vintage Hollywood motion pictures; “Viewing the Civil Rights South” examines altering methods to viewing race and sophistication within the post–civil rights period; and “Crossing Borders” considers the impact of postmodernism, postcolonialism, and media experiences on fresh southern films.

The participants to American Cinema and the Southern Imaginary complicate the foundational time period “southern,” in a few locations stretching the normal obstacles of neighborhood identity until eventually all of them yet disappear and in others limning a power and occasionally self-conscious functionality of position that intensifies its power.

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Extra resources for American Cinema and the Southern Imaginary

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Dramatically, they remain as faithful to the popular melodrama of the late Victorian novel and stage—Griffith’s training ground as a young actor—as Old Ben remains to his master’s model of racial codes. Griffith rarely ventured beyond the standard myths and legends of white southern chivalry and honor, heroic women on the home front, and loyal slaves that predominated in the popular memory of the war during this period. This more or less official memory was widely propagated in memorial societies, mainstream fiction, legitimate theater, and pageantry of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

In 1908, the year Griffith directed The Guerrilla, a dozen other fictional films about the war were released. 23 The year 1913, the widely memorialized semicentennial of Gettysburg, saw two important longer films about the war: Lubin’s melodramatic four-reel The Battle of Shiloh and more importantly, Thomas H. Ince’s five-reel The Battle of Gettysburg, which presaged the epic treatment Griffith would bring to the war two years later in The Birth of a Nation. According to historian Bruce Chadwick, many southern moviegoers surprised film producers with requests for films about the war.

Jon Smith and Deborah Cohn, introduction to “Uncanny Hybridities,” in Smith and Cohn, Look Away, 8. 11. For a more detailed historical overview of southern film up to 1980, see Campbell, Celluloid South. 12. W. E. B. Du Bois, The Souls of Black Folk, ed. Brent Hayes Edwards (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007), xxxvi. Introduction 21 13. Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1903) appeared several months before The Great Train Robbery, although the latter is often incorrectly cited as the first narrative film. 14.

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