Communication and Culture | Topics in Media History
C420 | 1085 | James Naremore

	Throughout the "classical" period of Hollywood motion picture
production, the major studios exported their celluloid products to
Europe and imported European talent rather than European films. When
sound arrived, Hollywood's hegemony over world entertainment was
threatened by language barriers, but the American industry continued
to maintain its economic superiority and made sure that its rivals
couldn't compete in the domestic market on a "free-trade" basis.
Europeans were increasingly worried about an American hegemony over
their native cultures. At the same time, however, Hollywood was
becoming the home for important European artists who were fleeing from
fascism, and who brought a distinctive "European-ness" to the films
they made in this country. For a variety of reasons-some economic,
some political, and some cultural-one could argue that Hollywood both
colonized and was colonized by Europe.
	This course will examine one aspect of the Europe-in-Hollywood
phenomenon by examining the careers of three major film directors-
-Fritz Lang, Billy Wilder, and Max Ophuls--whose careers span the
decades before and after World War II. All three began directing films
in Europe, and all three were responsible for some of the most
influential films ever made in Hollywood. Although we can't view all
their work, we will see a representative sampling of the pictures they
made in both Europe and America. (Some of these will be rare prints
from the David Bradley
collection.) The chief aim of the course is to study the three
directors, but we will also use their careers to reflect upon issues
of culture and national identity. Films viewed in the class will
include such well-known titles as Metropolis, Scarlet Street, Sunset
Boulevard, Sabrina, Lola Montez, and Letter from and Unknown Woman. We
will also see some lesser known but equally remarkable movies.
Students are expected to read assigned critical books on the
directors. Assignments consist of two written exams and two short
critical essays.