Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Cinematicity in Media History$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Jeffrey Geiger and Karin Littau

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780748676118

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748676118.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 05 July 2022

Reading in the Age of Edison: The Cinematicity of ‘The Yellow Wall-Paper’

Reading in the Age of Edison: The Cinematicity of ‘The Yellow Wall-Paper’

(p.66) (p.67) Chapter 4 Reading in the Age of Edison: The Cinematicity of ‘The Yellow Wall-Paper’
Cinematicity in Media History

Karin Littau

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter, written by Karin Littau, addresses the media-transitional period of the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries to show how aestho-physiological experiments in reading were linked to a variety of motion picture technologies. On the one hand such technologies were used to measure reading speeds; on the other, they profoundly affected how readers began to perceive the printed word: no longer as static marks on the page but giving ‘the impression of movement’, which in turn was conceived ‘in proportion’ to how it ‘moved’ the reader. By focusing on experiments by Vernon Lee, Gertrude Stein, and Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and her story ‘The Yellow Wall-Paper’ (itself an experiment in phantasmagoric reading), Littau shows how reading during this period bore the traces of cinematicity; to the extent that in the 1930s ‘movie-minded’ writers like Robert Carlton Brown proposed ‘reading machines’, which would bring outmoded reading practices into line with modern cinema-viewing.

Keywords:   Vernon Lee, Gertrude Stein, Charlotte Perkins Gilman, “The Yellow Wall-Paper”, History of reading, Comparative media, Film and Literature

Edinburgh Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.