Publication: 'New Perspectives on Early Cinema History'


Cover New PerspectivesCIMS-member Daniel Biltereyst and (former CIMS member, now at Queen Mary, University of London) Mario Slugan are happy to announce the publication of their volume New Perspectives on Early Cinema History (Bloomsbury, 2022).

The volume presents a theoretical reconceptualization of early cinema. To do so, it highlights the latest methods and tools for analysis, and casts new light on the experience of early cinema through the application of these concepts and methods.

The international host of contributors evaluate examples of early cinema across the globe, including The May Irwin Kiss (1896), Un homme de têtes (1900), The Terrible Turkish Executioner (1904) and Tom Tom the Piper's Son (1905). In doing so, they address the periodization of the era, emphasizing the recent boon in the availability of primary materials, the rise of digital technologies, the developments in new cinema history and historical audience historiography, and the persistence of some conceptualizations as key incentives for rethinking early cinema in theoretical and methodological terms.

They go on to highlight cutting-edge approaches to the study of early cinema, including the use of the Mediathread Platform, the formation of new datasets with the help of digital technologies, and exploring the early era in non-western cultures. Finally, the contributors revisit early cinema audiences and exhibition contexts by investigating some of the earliest screenings in Belgium, Denmark and the US, exploring the details of black cinema going in Harlem, and examining exhibition practices in Germany.