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Dismantling the Dream Factory

Gender, German Cinema, and the Postwar Quest for a New Film Language

Hester Baer

318 pages, 22 illus., bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-84545-605-4 $120.00/£85.00 Hb Published (September 2009)

ISBN  978-0-85745-617-5 $34.95/£24.00 Pb Published (February 2012)

eISBN 978-1-84545-945-1 eBook


Hb Pb   Request a Review or Examination Copy (in Digital Format) Recommend to your Library Buy the ebook from these vendors

“…[a] fascinating study…[that] makes  a major contribution to a burgeoning field dedicated to the investigation of what was once dismissed.”  ·  Monatshefte

“...makes a significant and original contribution, is well researched as well as written, and would lend itself conveniently to the teaching of any of these films…[It] bring[s] to bear theories from Anglo-American film studies as well as German cultural studies and history. The result is a felicitous mixture of theory, cultural-historical context, and informed film readings.”  ·  Jaimey Fisher, University of California, Davis

The history of postwar German cinema has most often been told as a story of failure, a failure paradoxically epitomized by the remarkable popularity of film throughout the late 1940s and 1950s. Through the analysis of 10 representative films, Hester Baer reassesses this period, looking in particular at how the attempt to ‘dismantle the dream factory’ of Nazi entertainment cinema resulted in a new cinematic language which developed as a result of the changing audience demographic. In an era when female viewers comprised 70 per cent of cinema audiences a ‘women’s cinema’ emerged, which sought to appeal to female spectators through its genres, star choices, stories and formal conventions. In addition to analyzing the formal language and narrative content of these films, Baer uses a wide array of other sources to reconstruct the original context of their reception, including promotional and publicity materials, film programs, censorship documents, reviews and spreads in fan magazines. This book presents a new take on an essential period, which saw the rebirth of German cinema after its thorough delegitimization under the Nazi regime.

Hester Baer is Associate Professor of Germanic Studies at the University of Maryland, College Park. She has published widely on postwar and contemporary German cinema, women's literature, and feminism.

Series: Volume 9, Film Europa
Subject: Film Studies Gender Studies
Area: Germany

LC: PN1993.5.G3 B275

BL: YC.2010.a.12951

BISAC: PER004030 PERFORMING ARTS/Film & Video/History & Criticism; SOC032000 SOCIAL SCIENCE/Gender Studies

BIC: APF Films, cinema; JFSJ Gender studies, gender groups




Contents

Figures
Acknowledgments

Introduction: Postwar German Cinema

Chapter 1. The Female Gaze in The Murderers Are Among Us
Chapter 2. Authorship and Stardom in Film Without a Title
Chapter 3. Love ’47 as Woman’s Film
Chapter 4. Race, Ethnicity, and Gender in Epilogue
Chapter 5. Regendering Representation in The Sinner
Chapter 6. Visual Pleasure and Cinematic Realism in The Forester of the Silver Wood
Chapter 7. Gender and Sexuality in Different From You and Me
Chapter 8. Spectatorship and Genre in Engagement in Zurich
Chapter 9. Critical Strategies of The Girl Rosemarie
Chapter 10. The Bread of Those Early Years as Transitional Film

Epilogue: Adapting the 1950s

Bibliography
Index

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