A Paul Rotha Reader
Edited by Duncan Petrie and Robert Kruger
Subjects: Film History
Paul Rotha was one of the major figures of the British Documentary Movement, second only to John Grierson. He was also a prolific writer, beginning with his celebrated book The Film Till Now, published in 1930. This volume brings together an edited collection of some of his most important writings and addresses a variety of topics including the theoretical basis of cinema, the emergence of an intellectual film culture in Britain, the state of the British film industry and his own experience of directing and producing films.
A Paul Rotha Reader marks a major reappraisal of Rotha's significance as a theorist, critic and advocate for cinema as the most important form of mass communication in the modern world. It will be essential reading for anyone seriously interested in British cinema history.
"Rotha's writing itself seems incredibly fresh and vibrant. A no-nonsense, clearly written personal view of filmmaking, the book is a pleasure to read and triggers off many a train of thought about the nature of documentary filmmaking . . . As a starting-point for discussion about the thinking behind documentary and the effect it can have on the viewer, it is a highly stimulating collection . . . The introductory chapters pull into focus Rotha's aims and intentions which remind the reader what documentary has the potential to do. To make us think."
(Journal of Popular British Cinema, Vol. 4, 2001)
Duncan Petrie is Professor in the Department of Theatre, Film and Television at the University of York. He was Director of the Bill Douglas Centre for the History of Cinema and Popular Culture. His books include Creativity and Constraint in the British Film Industry (Macmillan, 1991), New Questions of British Cinema (BFI, 1992), The British Cinematographer (BFI, 1996). Robert Kruger has worked as an editor, director and producer, mainly within the British documentary movement, and set up the TSW Film and Video Archive, now largest regional archive in the country. He started his working life with Paul Rotha's 'Films of Fact' company and edited Rotha's final two films.
New Titles List
Exeter Studies in Film History
- 'Film Europe' And 'Film America' - Cinema, Commerce and Cultural Exchange 1920-1939
- Alternative Empires - European Modernist Cinemas and Cultures of Imperialism
- Alternative Film Culture in Interwar Britain
- The Big Show - British Cinema Culture in the Great War (1914-1918)
- British Cinema and Middlebrow Culture in the Interwar Years
- Charles Urban - Pioneering the Non-Fiction Film in Britain and America, 1897 - 1925
- A Chorus Of Raspberries - British Film Comedy 1929-1939
- Going to the Movies - Hollywood and the Social Experience of Cinema
- The Great Art Of Light And Shadow - Archaeology of the Cinema
- Hollywood, Westerns And The 1930S - The Lost Trail
- Legitimate Cinema - Theatre Stars in Silent British Films, 1908-1918
- Marketing Modernity - Victorian Popular Shows and Early Cinema
- Multimedia Histories - From Magic Lanterns to Internet
- Parallel Tracks - The Railroad and Silent Cinema
- A Paul Rotha Reader
- Popular Filmgoing in 1930s Britain - A Choice of Pleasures
- Reading the Cinematograph - The Cinema in British Short Fiction, 1896-1912
- The World According To Hollywood,1918-1939
- Young And Innocent? - The Cinema in Britain, 1896-1930