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Johns Hopkins University

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The Johns Hopkins University is a private institution of higher learning located in Baltimore, Maryland. Johns Hopkins offers its main undergraduate and graduate programs at the Homewood Campus in Baltimore. The Zanvyl Krieger School of Arts & Sciences and the G.W.C. Whiting School of Engineering boast academic strengths in a wide variety of fields from the social sciences and humanities to the natural sciences and engineering. The University maintains full-time campuses in greater Maryland, Washington, D.C., Italy, and China. Johns Hopkins is considered one of the leading research and academic institutions in the world and is ranked among the most prestigious universities in the nation. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johns_Hopkins_University [Oct 2005]

Guide to Literary Theory and Criticism

The Johns Hopkins Guide to Literary Theory and Criticism is designed to balance elegant, readable design with adherence to Web standards; to take advantage of the medium to provide new or easier methods of identifying the reference material most suited to your needs; and to enhance the value of this reference work by enhancing its utility. --http://www.press.jhu.edu/books/hopkins_guide_to_literary_theory/g-about_guide.html [Oct 2004]

Film theory [...]

Because of the relative newness of the film medium compared with other art forms--Thomas Edison's Kinetoscope peephole machines were first open to the public in New York City only in 1894, and the Lumière brothers first projected their short actualités to a paying audience in a cafe in Paris in 1895--film theory and criticism are dependent on a limited number of major texts, and the lines of their discourse can easily be traced up to the point when Structuralism and poststructuralism had their profound effect on cultural history in general. From that point on, especially with the expansion of film departments and faculties at institutions of higher learning, film theory and criticism proliferated at a rapid rate, and film journals became as much a place for heated debate on the issues of art and aesthetics as the learned journals were for essays on literature. Much of the discourse on cinema from the start is concerned with fictional narrative films, an emphasis that parallels the vast popularity of such works compared with the more limited and specialized appeal of the documentary and avant-garde film.

For the first 20 years of motion pictures, film writing was largely descriptive and sometimes evaluative, but with the rise of the feature film, theory took its first pronounced steps with the appearance of two pioneer texts in English, Vachel Lindsay's The Art of the Moving Picture in 1915 (rev. ed., 1922) and Hugo Münsterberg's The Photoplay: A Psychological Study in 1916. Both of these works, the first by a poet and the second by a psychologist, consider this new medium in the context of other art forms. But whereas Lindsay is content to draw parallels between film and such other arts as architecture, sculpture, and poetry, Münsterberg goes much further in arguing for the unique properties of cinema by focusing in the first part of his work on the psychological responses of the viewer and in the second on the aesthetic properties of film as a mental creation. For him, film, by being freed from the constraints of real time and space as well as causality, is capable of being constructed with the free play of the viewer's mental life. -- John Hopkins University, http://www.press.jhu.edu/books/hopkins_guide_to_literary_theory/film_theory.html [Oct 2004]

Cultural Studies [...]

The most well-known academic program in cultural studies in Anglophone countries exists at the Centre (lately Department) for Contemporary Cultural Studies (CCCS), which was established at the University of Birmingham in England in 1963 under the directorship of Richard Hoggart. Initially part of the Department of English, the Centre became independent in 1972 during the directorship of Stuart Hall, whose term lasted from 1969 to 1979. Previously, Hall was the inaugural editor of Britain's New Left Review. It was during the 1970s that over 60 Stencilled Papers and 10 issues of the journal Working Papers in Cultural Studies (founded in 1971) were brought out. This journal was absorbed into a CCCS-Hutchinson Company book series that published in the closing years of the decade the collectively edited Resistance through Rituals: Youth Sub-Cultures in Post-War Britain (1976), On Ideology (1978), Women Take Issue (1978), Working Class Culture (1979), and especially Culture, Media, Language: Working Papers in Cultural Studies, 1972-79 (1980), which amounted to a CCCS reader, complete with an introductory account of the Centre by Stuart Hall. At the peak of this pioneering period in the 1970s, the Centre had 5 faculty members and 40 graduate students. By decade's end other university programs in cultural studies were set up in England, primarily at polytechnical institutes. With the founding in England of the Cultural Studies Association in 1984, the whole contemporary movement toward establishing cultural studies in the academy attained a significant moment of maturation. --Vincent B. Leitch (Published in Johns Hopkins Guide to Literary Theory and Criticism, eds. Michael Groden and Martin Kreiswirth [Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1994]: 179-82.)

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