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Moving ImagesNineteenth-Century Reading and Screen Practices$
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Helen Groth

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780748669486

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748669486.001.0001

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Literary Projections and Residual Media

Literary Projections and Residual Media

Cecil Hepworth and Robert Paul

(p.175) Chapter 7 Literary Projections and Residual Media
Moving Images

Helen Groth

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter explores the relationship between two influential figures in British early cinema, Cecil Hepworth and Robert Paul. Hepworth literally forged his cinematic vision out of Pauls’ discarded frames. The first section traces the emergence of Hepworth’s language of cinema out of a bricolage of images, concepts and technologies – primarily the magic lantern, the cinematograph, the psychology of the persistence of vision, and popular storytelling devices. The second section focuses on Hepworth’s adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures (1903). This film reflects Hepworth’s interest in the visual effects of continuity, integrating image and text in a format that supplemented what he saw as the distracting flicker effects of the cinematograph with titles designed to trigger the audience’s memory of Carroll’s familiar tale. The final section of this chapter reveals the continuities between Hepworth’s screen practice and Hugo Munsterberg’s psychological approach to film. Resonating with Munsterberg’s stress on the analogy between film and mind, the memory of reading Alice’s Adventures that Hepworth’s channels through his film was intended to elide the space between the images projected on the screen and the nostalgic stream of images generated in the minds of the audience by Carroll’s words and Tenniel’s popular illustrations.

Keywords:   Lewis Carroll, Cecil Hepworth, Robert Paul, Early Cinema, Psychology approaches to cinema, Cinema History, Alice in Wonderland

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