Associate Professor, Department of English, Texas Tech University
"The Great War on Screen: The Rhetoric of Film and the First World War"
In the First World War, film was integral to military strategy, from aerial reconnaissance to the engineering of public opinion through propaganda. Further, in the War's aftermath, its imagery would be re-purposed to both learn from the past and set the stage for coming conflicts. In this talk I will address the practicalities of WWI filmmaking, from the technologies used on the battlefield to the exhibition of films of and about the conflict, while also considering how later generations of filmmakers represented the war in dramatized and documentary accounts. I will also discuss some of the contingencies of preserving and restoring WWI films, and address how original materials have been utilized in commemoration of the centenary.