Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Depth Perception: Narrative and the Body in American Medical Filmmaking
by Posner, Miriam, Ph.D., Yale University, 2011, 199; 3497006
Abstract (Summary)

Depth Perception examines the medical depiction of the human body on film during the first half of the twentieth century. It does this using three case studies: a series of films the Edison company made about tuberculosis, the work of the physician-filmmaker Jacob Sarnoff, and the photographs and films of the neurologist and psychiatrist Walter Freeman. These three case studies, which respectively deal with disease, anatomy, and mind, demonstrate that presenting the body on film is much more difficult than one might think. It requires a series of difficult choices about how to show interior processes and how to connect one part of the body to another. Moreover, filming the body activates anxiety about the relationship of the medical profession to showmanship (and, by extension, the marketplace). Depth Perception is a contribution to the visual scholarship of medicine as well as to the study of nontheatrical film.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Musser, Charles, Warner, John Harley
School: Yale University
School Location: United States -- Connecticut
Source: DAI-A 73/05, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: American studies, Science history, Film studies
Keywords: Body, History, Medical filmmaking, Orphan films, Psychiatry, Visual culture
Publication Number: 3497006
ISBN: 978-1-267-18035-3
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