ERIC Number: ED105527
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1975-Apr
Reference Count: 0
The Human Voice and the Silent Cinema.
Berg, Charles M.
This paper traces the history of motion pictures from Thomas Edison's vision in 1887 of an instrument that recorded body movements to the development of synchronized sound-motion films in the late 1920s. The first synchronized sound film was made and demonstrated by W. K. L. Dickson, an assistant to Edison, in 1889. The popular acceptance of silent films and their contents is traced through the development of film narrative and the use of music in the early 1900s. The silent era is labeled as a consequence of technological and economic chance and this chance is made to account for the accelerated development of the medium's visual communicative capacities. The thirty year time lapse between the development of film and the use of live human voices can therefore be regarded as the critical stimuli which pushed the motion picture into becoming an essentially visual medium in which the audial channel is subordinate to and supportive of the visual channel. The time lapse also aided the motion picture to become a medium of artistic potential and significance. (RB)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Society for Cinema Studies Conference (New York City, April 1975)