Genre - Part One- Defining Genre.doc

3 Pages
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Department
Innis College Courses
Course Code
INI100H1
Professor
Corinn Columpar

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Genre - Part One: Defining Genre For the last four weeks we have been emphasizing the textual. In this section of the course the intertextual relations between texts will be extremely important. • genre • auteurism • stardom Case study in genre: The Western Case study in auteurism: Federico Fellini Case study in stardom: Bette Davis • film genres are associated with classical cinema, particularly Hollywood classical cinema • both are derived from the systemized mode of production • certain studios well known for certain genres: ◦ MGM known for musical productions ◦ Warner Brothers for gangster films ◦ Universal Studios for horror films • genre: grouping of films that possess some common set of characteristics • from Andrew Tudor's Theories of Film (1974) ◦ "Genre is what we collectively believe it to be." • speaks to conventions • The types of conventions that define a particular genre: 1. visual (props, setting, costume), aural (music, sound effects, speech), and technical (casting, etc.) 2. narrative 3. thematic • Westerns: 4. sounds: spurs, saloon doors, slow speech and abrupt gunfire 5. visual: saloon 6. audience perspective is landscape 7. generation + propagation of certain myths + ideas: doctrine of manifest destiny, the gun, endorsement of particular type of masculinity, fear of the stranger (xenophobia) Genres of determinate space vs indeterminate space determinate: takes place in an area, specific in its geography and symbolism - ex. the western frontier • Narrative conventions ◦ binary situations: main character must choose between them ◦ relationship btwn men and women ◦ civilization vs nature Genre - Part One: Defining Genre ◦ vs melodrama which has to do with personal matters rather than law and order ◦ hero enters an arena --> hero eradicates some threat to community --> hero exists arena • Thematic conventions ◦ the law of the gun, the nature of honour, the pursuit of manifest destiny ◦ iconography of gangster film = men in hats with machine guns ◦ rather than wide open spaces they are in city streets ◦ relationship btwn law, idea of success, loss of deals, engagement w the american dream as a possibility and as an illusion indeterminate: not many identifiable conventions • the musical - how has it been typically discussed and defined by critics? ◦ most obvious: singing and dancing • types of stories told ◦ overcoming obstacles to put on a show and/or to find heteresexual ro- mance and/or to create a large community ◦ ex. Moulin Rouge, Singing in the rain • Narrative structure
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