Colloquium | Jane Gaines

Wednesday, September 27, 2017 - 12:00pm


Jane Gaines

Telling vs. Counting: A Digital Humanities Agnostic’s View

Derived from a chapter in my forthcoming Pink-Slipped: What Happened to Women in the Silent Film Industries?, this talk stages the scholar’s engagement with his or her research material at that juncture when the toughest decision must be made: how to organize it. From within a book project growing out of issues raised by the new philosophy of history as much as newer media archaeology approaches, I set up a meeting at the juncture between traditional narrative history and the newer “digital histories,” exemplified by the use of Metro Pictures (1915 - 1924) and Metro/Goldwyn/Mayer (1924 – 1928) payroll data.

Jane Gaines is the award-winning author of two books: Contested Culture: The Image, the Voice and the Law and Fire and Desire: Mixed Race Movies in the Silent Era, both of which received the Katherine Singer Kovacs prize from the Society for Cinema and Media Studies. She received an Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Scholarly Award for her forthcoming book on early cinema, Historical Fictioning: Women Film Pioneers and for work on the Women Film Pioneers digital archive published by Columbia University Libraries in 2013. This research was supported as well by a Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study Fellowship. She has written articles on intellectual property and piracies, documentary theory and radicalism, feminism and film, early cinema, fashion and film, and critical race theory that have appeared in Cinema Journal, Screen, Cultural Studies, Framework, Camera Obscura, and Women and Performance. Most recently, she has been engaged in a critique of the “historical turn” in film and media studies.

Cinema Studies Program
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