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dc.contributor.advisor Gaines, Jane en_US
dc.contributor.author Salerno, Abigail en_US
dc.date.accessioned 2008-01-02T16:33:36Z
dc.date.available 2008-01-02T16:33:36Z
dc.date.issued 2007-12-18 en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10161/444
dc.description Dissertation en_US
dc.description.abstract My dissertation explores non-visual experiences of film through a study of the recurring cinematic figure of the blind heroine in three periods of US cinema - late silent, classical, post-studio. My analysis of films, multi-sensory film "spectatorship" and film production critically depart from the readings offered by semiotic and psychoanalytic film theory, in favor of theories of cinematic perception and theories of genre, namely, melodrama and suspense. My approach reorients theories of film that have explained cinema as an exclusively visual culture towards a broader consideration of sensory perception and film experience.Attention to Helen Keller, as an author and a cinematic protagonist, and to the ability of the figure of the blind heroine to reorganize the structure of the films that address her frames my discussion of modern film form. Film has attempted to represent the spatial, tactile and aural experiences of gendered blind protagonists for sighted viewers - to visually produce non-visual experiences and to move beyond the limitations of its own technologies. In each of the technological periods I examine, film uses cinematography that addresses the body, sonic and visual attention to texture and movement, and narrative and affective structures of melodrama and suspense, to create the audience's aesthetic experience. My work explores the ways in which cinema has been multi-sensory, embodied, and "not-visual" - that is, visual but also more than visual - through critical evaluation of the dominant arguments of film theory, formal analysis of films, and historical accounts of film production.Keller's work and the films I examine offer a theory of the modern phenomenological subject - a subject whose senses are not, finally, located within the body of the individual but are shared with, and borrowed from, the world of human and cinematic bodies they encounter. en_US
dc.format.extent 4941043 bytes
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.language.iso en_US
dc.subject Cinema en_US
dc.subject Literature, Comparative en_US
dc.subject American Studies en_US
dc.subject Film Studies en_US
dc.subject phenomenology en_US
dc.subject melodrama en_US
dc.subject blindness en_US
dc.subject Helen Keller en_US
dc.title The Blind Heroine in Cinema History: Film and the Not-Visual en_US
dc.type Dissertation en_US
dc.department Literature en_US

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