Dickens and the Dream of Cinema
Dickens and the dream of cinema seeks to dissolve the barriers between literary and film studies. Grahame Smith, a major Dickens scholar who has also taught, researched and published in the field of film, suggests that Dickens's work plays a seminal role in the emergence of cinema. Taking his cue from Walter Benjamin's concept of each epoch dreaming the epoch that is to follow, Smith argues that Dickens's novels can be regarded as proto-filmic in the detail of their language as well as their larger formal structures. This possibility arises from Dickens's creative engagement with the city as metropolis, as it emerges in the London of the 1830s. Dickens's immersion in the visual entertainments of his own day, such as the panorama, and his interest in railway travel are also important ingredients in this anticipation of film. The book suggests a new way of reading Dickens by way of a form which only came into existence after his death, while simultaneously offering an account of his part in the manifold forces that led to the appearance of film towards the end of the nineteenth century. This original and groundbreaking study will appeal both to the many readers of Dickens and to students of early and silent cinema.
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seeing and being seen
London as labyrinth Paris as panorama
The magic carpet of technology
Dickens theatre and spectacle
The impurity of art
adaptation Ambersons appearance Arcades Project artistic aspects audience Baudelaire Bazin Benjamin Bleak House British British Film Institute camera career century chapter Charles Dickens cinema Citizen Kane complex consciousness creative culture dark detail devices Dickensian diorama Dombey dream early Edzard's Eisenstein embodied entertainment essay evocation example experience F for Fake fiction Film Form film-making Griffith imagery imagination kind language Letters of Dickens light literary Little Dorrit London look magic lantern Magnificent Ambersons major Mannoni melodrama metropolis mirrors montage movement moving Mutual Friend narrative nineteenth nineteenth-century novelist Oliver Twist Orson Oxford painting panorama Paris passage Pickwick Pickwick Papers Pictures from Italy play popular possible railway reader reality relation response role scene screen seems seen sense Shadow Shakespeare Sketches by Boz spectacle stage streets suggests television theatre theatrical trans University Press urban Victorian vision visual Welles's whole words writing