New York and the Movies - FI582

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Module delivery information

This module is not currently running in 2021 to 2022.


This module examines the way New York has been used as a site for filmmaking, looking at the history of the production of films in and about the city, and as a vital centre of film culture -- not just of filmmaking, but also exhibition and film criticism. The module considers questions of modernity, the avant-garde practice in New York during the 1950s and 60s, and the city's representation in mainstream Hollywood productions. The work on New York and film will be contextualised within a cultural history of the city, with a dual emphasis on narratives of immigration and the city as the post-war centre of the world art market.


Contact hours

Total contact hours: 60
Private study hours: 240
Total study hours: 300

Method of assessment

Essay (2500 words) (40%)
Essay (3500 words) (60%)

Indicative reading

Stanley Corkin, Starring New York: Filming the Grime and the Glamour of the Long 1970s (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011)
James D., ed. (1992), To Free the Cinema: Jonas Mekas & the New York Underground Princeton: Princeton University Press
Pomerance M. (2007), City that Never Sleeps: New York and the Filmic Imagination, New Brunswick NJ: Rutgers University Press
Sanders J. (2001), Celluloid Skyline: New York and the Movies, London: Bloomsbury
Shiel M., and Fitzmaurice T., eds, (1997) Screening the City, London: Routledge
Peter Stanfield, 'Going Underground with Manny Farber & Jonas Mekas' Daniel Biltereyst, Richard Maltby, & Philippe Meers (eds.), Explorations in New Cinema History: Approaches and Case Studies (Cambridge: Blackwell, 2011)

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

- Demonstrate detailed knowledge of key questions, concepts and critical debates around film as both a popular medium and artistically valued object of study.
- Demonstrate systematic understanding of the different modes of analysis made possible by key methods of enquiry that are concerned with modernity, film and the city, the avant-garde and underground subcultures and be able to demonstrate their relevance to the topic of New York and the movies
- Devise a discussion of cinema and the city through a sustained a engagement with key methods of enquiry based on a synthesis of historical, theoretical, and aesthetic approaches
- Demonstrate systematic understanding of the complexities involved in studying representation (race, class, gender, sexuality), art and cinema, film exhibition, and film and the city (modernity).


  1. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  2. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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