Halfway down the stairs: children's spaces in amateur family films from the 1930s to the 1960s

Lury, K. (2013) Halfway down the stairs: children's spaces in amateur family films from the 1930s to the 1960s. Home Cultures, 10(3), pp. 267-287. (doi: 10.2752/175174213X13739735973417)

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This article will explore a number of so-called "family films"— amateur productions—made in Scotland between the 1930s and 1960s. The films, currently preserved in the Scottish Screen Archive, were made by many different nonprofessional filmmakers either working on their own or as part of a local amateur cine club. while these films share characteristics with the home movie, they should not be confused with this mode of production as these films are carefully scripted and edited, and the events they depict are evidently staged for the camera. Unlike many home movies they have a clear narrative structure, and while the content is ordinary there has been an explicit attempt to create suspense or humor. However, like the home movie, the filmmaker normally employs his own family as his cast—generally his wife, children, and pets—and uses his own home and garden as the setting for the film. As such, they provide a beautifully realized record of actual suburban, middle-class homes during the mid-twentieth century and are revealing of these homes' interiors, providing detailed images of period products such as branded foods, clothes, and toys. As historical records the films are thus inherently valuable and of interest.

Item Type:Articles
Keywords:Children, Amateur Film, Interiors
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Lury, Professor Karen
Authors: Lury, K.
College/School:College of Arts > School of Culture and Creative Arts > Theatre Film and TV Studies
Journal Name:Home Cultures
ISSN (Online):1751-7427

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