In the first of two articles, Marc Barrett explores the work of Alain Bergala on the potential of short film clips to engage school students in learning across the curriculum. The best teaching and learning happens when we engage our students on an intellectual, emotional and personal level. That is all well and good to acknowledge but our ongoing quandary, as teachers, has always been — how do we do that? Back in , an established and well-respected film academic in France, called Alain Bergala, wrote an incendiary book called The Cinema Hypothesis.
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Alain Bergala. Translated by Madeline Whittle. With a dialogue between Alain Bergala and Alejandro Bachmann. Austrian Film Museum. This is the first English translation of Alain Bergala's seminal text on the potentials, possibilities, and problems of bringing film to schools and other educational contexts. Based on the author's own experiences of writing about and teaching film as well as serving as an adviser to then-Minister of Education Jack Lang, Bergala promotes an understanding of film as an autonomous art form — rather than viewing it as a supplement to other established school subjects.
Film, for Bergala, is not something that has to smoothly blend into the school but something that can serve as a productive rupture, for both institution and pupil. Published in collaboration with the British Film Institute, this edition will be complemented by a new introduction on the occasion of its first appearance in English and a conversation with Bergala about the current state of film education on an international scale.
The Cinema Hypothesis must be of considerable interest to those involved in teaching cinema on any level. Sight and Sound The ingenuity of the book doesn't primarily lie in its value for educational purposes but in the ideas it formulates about the essence, theory and practice of film. Jugend Ohne Film The Cinema Hypothesis is actually an erudite and absorbing deliberation on cinema's receding cultural status, and a passionate appeal for its res cue Series FilmmuseumSynemaPublications.
It was an autumn evening, and I may have been twelve or thirteen years old. My mother and brother were standing there, with their backs to me. Glued to each other, they giggled at something they were watching through the window. I must have walked very stealthily, because they remained unaware of my presence. They both shuddered and turned towards me. What I remember most is their looks of astonishment. As happens in the movies after a character has seen a ghost, they were awestruck and could barely speak.
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The Cinema Hypothesis