The Past in Visual Culture

Essays on Memory, Nostalgia and the Media

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About the Book

In recent years digital technology has made available an inconceivably vast archive of old media. Images of the past—accessed with the touch of a finger—are now intertwined with those of the present, raising questions about how visual culture affects our relationship with history and memory. This collection of new essays contributes to a growing debate about how the past and its media are appropriated in the modern world. Focusing on a range of visual cultures, the essays explore the intersection of film, television, online and print media and visual art—platforms whose boundaries are increasingly hard to define—and the various ways we engage the past in an environment saturated with the imagery of previous eras. Topics include period screen fiction, nonfiction media histories and memories, cinematic nostalgia and recycling, and the media as both purveyors and carriers of memory.

About the Author(s)

Jilly Boyce Kay is a Research Associate in the Department of Media and Communication at the University of Leicester, UK. Her work has been published in Feminist Media Histories, Critical Studies in Television, Social Movement Studies, and Journalism: Theory, Practice and Criticism, as well as in edited collections on media history, gender and television.

Cat Mahoney’s work has been published in Frames Cinema Journal and she has presented at Television for Women: an International Conference, the Social History Society Annual Conference, and at the Cinema e Storia conference. She lives in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, UK.

Caitlin Shaw’s work appears in Cinema, Television and History: New Approaches. She lives in Windsor, Ontario.

Bibliographic Details

Edited by Jilly Boyce Kay, Cat Mahoney and Caitlin Shaw

Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 264
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2017
pISBN: 978-1-4766-6380-7
eISBN: 978-1-4766-2689-5
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments v
Introduction (Jilly Boyce Kay, Cat Mahoney and Caitlin Shaw) 1

Part I. Recent Historical and Period Fictions: Reframing the 20th Century
Modern Art and Mediated Histories: Pleasantville, Mona Lisa Smile and Far from Heaven (Christine Sprengler) 12
Mad Men and Memory: Nostalgia, Intertextuality and Seriality in 21st Century Retro Television (Debarchana Baruah) 32
The Women’s Land Army Remembered on British Television (Cat Mahoney) 46

Part II. Feminism in ­Non-Fiction Media: Historical Narratives and ­Counter-Memories
“Spiced with a touch of glitz and a lot of fun”: Watch the Woman, “Rogue” Feminism and 1980s Television for Women (Jilly Boyce Kay) 66
Feminist Magazines and Historicizing the Second Wave: Whose Histories? (Claire Sedgwick) 84
Discursive Activism and ­Counter-Memories of SlutWalk (Kaitlynn Mendes) 101

Part III. Media Histories and Discarded Technologies: Recycling Memory in the Information Age
The Same Handful of Images: Submarine, Indie Retro and 2000s Youth Cinema (Caitlin Shaw) 121
To Hold On or to Let Go? ­Small-Gauge Amateur Filmmaking and Nostalgia in Super 8 and Frankenweenie (Marta Wąsik) 137
Room 237: Cinephilia, History and Adaptation (Laura Mee) 154

Part IV. Sites of Memory: Mediating Iconic Spaces, Objects and Ephemera
The BBC Archive ­Post–Jimmy Savile: Irreparable Damage or Recoverable Ground? (Rowan Aust and Amy Holdsworth) 170
A Psychoanalytic Perspective on Childhood Television Memories (Jo ­Whitehouse-Hart) 185
“Whispers of escapades out on the ‘D’ train”: The Entangled Visions of Cindy Sherman’s Untitled Film Stills (Vanessa Longden) 203
Space and Place to Remember: Television’s Double Articulation in the National Space Centre (Helen Wood and Tim ­O’Sullivan) 220

About the Contributors 241
Index 245