Essay on 1890s Expansionism

Essay on 1890s Expansionism

… The very first films were, in fact, documentaries. It is generally agreed that the earliest motion pictures were produced by a French/English genius named Louis Aime Augustin Le Prince (1842-1890?) (Robertson 2001). Two fragments of film survive from Le Prince’s first successful efforts in 1888, and both are simple records of daily activities (Le Prince’s father-in-law Joseph Whitley in his garden and traffic crossing Leeds Bridge). While it may be difficult to understand today, there was no need for a story or even continuity in these first films. Still photography itself was only about 50 years old, and the very fact that the actions of human lives were being captured and preserved to be witnessed over and over again was extraordinarily exciting. The fumbling efforts of a bird as it learns to fly must be just as emotionally powerful as the soaring of an eagle. …

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