A recording of my presentation at this year’s University Film and Video Association (UFVA) 2017 conference.
Teaching Silent Films allows you to teach diversity again because there were filmmakers of all colors and ethnic backgrounds. Much of that work has been lost. Some of it is findable. Oscar Micheaux was one of the people I found for my students. He was a hugely successful African-American writer/director and he also wrote novels and he translated his novels into films. One of them is called Within Our Gates and it’s free on YouTube as well and he looked at middle class African-Americans talking in the 1910’s and presented them to the audience in ways that other movies were not and I thin kit’s important for them to know his work in line with Cecil B. DeMille and D. W. Griffith and all those other guys because they’re not the only men – they’re not the only people who are around but if you look at film history classes that’s all they’ve learned and that really bothers me.
Books Mentioned In This Presentation
- Without Lying Down
- Oscar Micheaux: The Great and Only: The Life of America’s First Black Filmmaker
- The Real Nick and Nora
- Doctor Who: The Writer’s Tale: The Final Chapter
- The Writers: A History of American Screenwriters and Their Guild
- Monster: Living Off the Big Screen
- “It’s the Pictures That Got Small”: Charles Brackett on Billy Wilder and Hollywood’s Golden Age
- Women Screenwriters: An International Guide
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