Specters of Feminist Silent Film Comedy

Oct. 22, 2018
7:00 pm
de Witt Lecture Hall (106), Zabriskie Hall

The Wells College Film & Media Studies Program is pleased to welcome Maggie Hennefeld, who will introduce the evening's film program, "Specters of Feminist Silent Film Comedy." Maggie Hennefeld is the author of "Specters of Slapstick and Silent Film Commediennes (Columbia University press, 2018). The event will take place at 7:00 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 22, in Zabriskie Hall's Room 106. The event is free and all are welcome.

In these international feminist silent film comedies, housemaids spontaneously combust out of the chimney, women disturb the peace with their loud laughter and grotesquer face-making and terrorize the public sphere with their sadistic practical jokes and insatiable maternity cravings. Meanwhile, miniature Satanic dancers and a mystifying female conjurer bedevil us with several uncanny film tricks.

Full Program

  • Mary Jane's Mishap (G.A. Smith, UK, 1903, 4 min)
  • Daisy Doodad's Dial (Florence Turner / Larry Trimble, UK, 1914, 9 min)
  • Betty and Jane Go to the Theater [Rosalie et Leontine Vont au Theatre] (Romeo Bosetti, France, 1911, 5 min)
  • Betty Pulls the Strings [Les Ficelles de Leontine] (Romeo Bosetti, France, 1910, 7 min)
  • Lea and the Ball of Wool [Lea e il Gomitolo] (Cines, Italy, 1913 4.5 min)
  • Cunegonde Has Visitors [Cunegonde Recoit sa Familie] (Lux, France, 1912, 6 min)
  • Laughing Gas (Edwin S. Porter, US, 1907, 9 min)
  • Madame's Cravings [Madame a des Envies] (Alice Guy-Blanche, France, 1907, 4 min)
  • The Electric Hotel [El Hotel Electrico] (Segundo de Chomon and Ferdinand Zecca, France, 1908, 9.5 min
  • The Red Spectre [Le Spectre Rouge] (Segundo de Chomon and Ferdinand Zecca, France, 1907, 9.5 min)
  • Mabel's Strange Predicament (Mabel Normand, US, 1914, 12 min)

Maggie Hennefeld is Assistant Professor of Cultural Studies & Comparative Literature at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. She is the author of "Specters of Slapstick and Silent Film Commediennes (Columbia University Press, 2018) and co-editor of "The Abject Objection" (Duke University Press, 2019) and "Unwatchable" (Rutgers University Press, 2019). She is also co-editor of the "Gender and Comedy" issue of Feminist Media Histories (2017). Her articles have appeared in journals including Camera Obscura, Screen, Discourse, Film History, Critical Inquiry, Cultural Critique, Flow, Ms. magazine and differences.

This program is presented by the Film and Media Studies program.
For more information please visit: https://www.wells.edu/programs/majors/film-media-studies

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