For Many but not for All

Italian film history and the circumstantial value of audience studies

Authored by: Mariagrazia Fanchi

The Routledge Companion to New Cinema History

Print publication date:  February  2019
Online publication date:  February  2019

Print ISBN: 9781138955844
eBook ISBN: 9781315666051
Adobe ISBN:

10.4324/9781315666051-38

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Abstract

In Italy, the history of audiences has played a marginal role in film and media studies. At least until the second half of the 1990s, it received scant attention and was largely peripheral in academic debates, as film studies still revolved entirely around directors and movies. This chapter seeks primarily to demonstrate the heuristic value of audience research for the Italian history of cinema and for Italian history tout court. Indeed, an examination of the cinematic experience and its social, cultural, and political function through the lens of audiences reveals new elements that allow us to recount the past in a new and clearer way.

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