CHAPTER 4 / Part 2


Table of Contents

Table of Contents




Charles Musser argues that, as of 1897, exhibitors—those who actually presented moving picture programs to paying audiences—were

responsible for the arrangements of films. . . . Each scene was a completely self-contained, one-shot unit, unrelated to the preceding or following film. Generally, no thematic, narrative, spatial, or temporal relationships existed between scenes. . . .

Rather, exhibitions were initially organized along variety principles that emphasized diversity and contrast even while the selections often built to a climax and ended with a flourish. . . . Surviving programs from the period suggest the extent to which exhibitors favored variety over possible spatial, temporal, narrative, or thematic continuities.[47]

Because they often incorporated footage acquired from more than one producer, exhibitors

exercised a fundamental, creative role. They each selected their own moving pictures and stereopticon slides, placed them in a particular order, wrote and delivered a narration, and provided incidental music. . . . In short, their exhibitions revealed a strong continuity with earlier [exhibition] traditions.[48]

Eventually, concludes Musser, the moving-picture program itself assumed the configuration of the “variety format.”[49] The projectionist, explains film historian John Fell,

could not only decide what might be exhibited at any given performance and its order of appearance, but could also manipulate specific image-to-image relationships. . . . A projectionist could intersperse slides with films, further to designate relationships between screen “events.” In its own fashion, the entire process resembled a music-hall entertainer’s capacity to select, omit, and pace his material in terms of any particular audience’s state of mind and responses. The movies were literally one of vaudeville’s several acts.[50]

We know, however, that in the years 1900 to 1903, the nature of the product—the films themselves—changed. On the basis of that change, moreover, we can see the effect of two industrywide phenomena:

  1. The mixture of presentational and representational modes in such genres as prizefight and passion-play films suggests that the strain on the traditional presentational system of the moving picture was becoming more pronounced; in other words, as audiences demanded more interesting subjects, especially stories, the limitations of the presentational mode became more of a problem for producers.
  2. The further development of representational techniques was possible only as producers assumed greater control over the films that were distributed to exhibitors.

               Edwin S. Porter

Beginning in 1898, one of the employees at the Eden Musee who was responsible for combining short films into longer programs was a former Naval telegraph operator named Edwin S[tanton] Porter (1870-1941).[51] Porter had invented and improved communications devices for the Navy and then projected films for friends who had, at his urging, purchased the Edison vitascope rights for California and Indiana. At the Eden Musee, his job no doubt introduced him to the effects of “editing” film shots into coherent sequences, but his duties were largely technical, particularly the enhancement of the theater’s projector. He also designed special wide-gauge cameras, printers, and projectors before being hired, in 1900, to redesign equipment for the Edison Manufacturing Company. By February 1901, Porter was in charge of Edison’s new indoor studio in New York, where he worked as producer, director, and cameraman.[52]

A Flair for Comic Strips, Cartoons, and Comedies

See the moving picture


          Edwin S. Porter, Terrible Teddy,

   the Grizzly King, Edison Mfg. Co., 1901

Porter specialized in what Musser calls “the cinematic equivalents of comic strips and political cartoons,” which capitalized on his sense of popular taste. He also had a flair for comedy, as in Terrible Teddy, the Grizzly King (1901), a burlesque (inspired by a newspaper cartoon) of Vice President-elect Theodore Roosevelt’s well-publicized hunting expeditions. Many of the comedies that Porter made at Edison are multishot films in which the meaning of shots is interdependent in ways more complex than mere sequence.[53]

In The Tramp’s Dream (1901), for example, Shot 1 finds a tramp sleeping on a park bench. Shot 2 dissolves to a revelation of the tramp’s dream—the familiar image of a tramp’s encounter with a bulldog. Shot 3, in which the tramp is rousted by a policeman, not only closes the film with another familiar image but suggests the stimulus for the dream: perhaps the bulldog’s attack represents in the tramp’s dream his fear of brutal treatment by figures of authority. If so, the psychological dimension of Porter’s “story” makes it more complex than Lubin’s treatment of a similar episode with the same title.[54]

See an excerpt


         Edwin S. Porter, Rube and Mandy

   at Coney Island, Edison Mfg. Co., 1903

The Spectacle of the Urban Experience: Rube and Mandy at Coney Island
  Rube and Mandy at Coney Island (1903—Figure 4.18) borrows from the travelogue the device of the panning camera to scan the wonders of the famous amusement park.[55] But it’s also a multishot film featuring two actors in the sketchy story of a young country couple on holiday in the big city. Shot by shot, they sample rides and other attractions until a final shot whisks them off to the Bowery, where they enjoy the novelty of street-vended frankfurters. Unable to contain their delight in this particular urban experience (which apparently surpasses anything that Coney Island has to offer), they behave like bumptious hicks, making themselves a spectacle for the benefit not only of the camera but of the passersby in the background.

Up until this point, the entire film has been composed of long shots, but the culmination tightens on what the Edison catalogue calls a “bust view”—a medium shot—of the couple’s comic antics. The effect, observes Musser, is the abstraction of a single moment of burlesque from a narrative that has thus far been devoted to a documentary-style catalogue of the amusement park’s attractions. Rube and Mandy become the attraction, and Porter signals his intended effect by taking advantage of the cut to change his camera distance and angle.[56]

Editorial Control and the Principle of Temporal Repetition

In September 1901, President William McKinley was assassinated at the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York. Porter headed a crew that filmed funeral ceremonies in Buffalo, Washington, and McKinley’s home of Canton, Ohio. In releasing the resulting newsreels, the producer assumed a degree of editorial control that was, at the time, fairly unusual. Edison’s Complete Funeral Cortege at Canton, Ohio (Figure 4.19) was issued in various 400-foot “series” consisting of as many as four separate films joined by dissolves created at the printing stage. Exhibitors were invited to purchase either an entire series or the separate films of which it was composed.[57]

See the moving picture


        Porter, The Execution of Czolgosz

         with Panorama of Auburn Prison

The Cinematic Equivalent of Meanwhile: The Execution of Czolgosz
  The same strategy was pursued in The Execution of Czolgolsz with Panorama of Auburn Prison (1901—Figure 4.20). Porter’s most ambitious project to date, the depiction of the execution of McKinley’s assassin consists of four shots. The first two shots are exterior panoramas of the prison on the morning of the execution. Shots 3 and 4 are re-enactments, based on newspaper reports, of the execution itself. The relationship between Shots 1 and 2 on the one hand and Shots 3 and 4 on the other establishes an effective sense of spatial continuity, particularly the relationship between exterior and interior. Exhibitors, however, could buy the movie with or without Shots 1 and 2.[58]

The sequencing of Shots 3 and 4 is also interesting for its strategy in conveying temporal relationships:

Note that the first activity in Shot 4 (the test of the electric chair) occurs at the same time as the three activities depicted in Shot 3—the cinematic equivalent of meanwhile. Simple linear time is violated, although in the interest of precisely what intended effect it’s hard to tell. The result, however, is recognizable as a representation of simultaneity: we witness the same passage of time from two different perspectives. Equally important is the realization that the effect of simultaneity can be achieved despite the necessity of depicting component events by means of shots linked in linear sequence. While the climactic events of Shot 4, therefore, adhere to a strictly presentational mode of staging, the rendering of temporality in Shots 3 and 4 displays a highly representational handling of cinematic material.

Time after Time: The Habit of Overlapping
  The technique, of course, is much more awkward than that of parallel editing, and overlapping the action is clearly not a viable solution to the problem of how to get without interruption from one shot to the next while time continues to elapse: such repetition would be out of the question in a longer narrative. Nevertheless, Porter persisted in using the technique for at least another four years. How They Do Things in the Bowery (1902—Figure 4.21),[59] for example, consists of three shots:

  1. In New York City, a country rube is picked up by a prostitute, who lures him into a bar.
  2. She slips him a mickey, relieves him of his money, and absconds; the bartender pitches the rube and his suitcase into the street.
  3. A police paddy wagon arrives outside the bar and waits; the rube’s ejection from the bar is depicted again, whereupon he’s whisked away by the police.

Or, again, consider The Kleptomaniac, a multishot film released in early 1905.[60] It tells two stories and, in the process, extends the principle of temporal overlapping from the level of the shot to that of the whole narrative:

  1. A poor woman is arrested when she steals some bread to feed her starving children.
  2. A well-to-do woman is arrested when she shoplifts some luxury items from a department store.

See the moving picture


         Edwin S. Porter, The Kleptomaniac

                    Edison Mfg. Co., 1905

Both women are then brought into a courtroom. While the poor woman is branded a criminal and sentenced to jail, the wealthy woman (“Mrs. Banker”) is excused as a harmless kleptomaniac and released. Interestingly, Porter tells the stories of the two women one after the other; each episode is presented whole, and there’s no effort to cut back and forth between them (Figure 4.22). The fact that the two women end up simultaneously in the same courtroom reinforces the implication that the two stories were in fact concurrent: again, in other words, the solution to the problem of depicting simultaneous events in a medium that progresses linearly has been merely to show one after the other.

Musser contends that Porter relied on temporal repetition because he was convinced that his audience couldn’t understand the representational strategy that we know as continuity—the depiction, for instance, of two events (or even the interweaving of fragments of two events) in a fashion which belies the assumption that linear presentation (one shot, sequence, or story must follow another) inherently inhibits the expression of simultaneity.

John Fell suggests that the principle of temporal repetition may have been carried over from the habit of regarding separate film shots as analogous to separate magic-lantern slides—a habit that produced practical difficulties when a filmmaker’s narrative concept required him (as did Porter’s in How They Do Things in the Bowery) to depict two simultaneously perceived areas of space even as his filmstrip continues to run forward linearly and without interruption. “To put it another way,” says Fell, “the Edison Company could have sold ‘Bartender Ejects Rube from Bowery Saloon’ and ‘Bowery Bar Victim Viewed in Extremis by Passersby’ either separately or as a unit.”[61]

See the moving picture


  Edwin S. Porter, Jack and the Beanstalk,

                  Edison Mfg. Co., 1902

The Logic of Spectacle: Jack and the Beanstalk
  Finally, we should point out that the relative lack of interest in representing the basic nuances of temporal unfolding in Porter’s early fictional films may reflect the influence of Georges Méliès (see Chapter 3.2). In Méliès’ popular trick films, fantasies, and fairy tales, the representation of temporal transitions plays a subsidiary role to what Méliès himself called “artificially arranged scenes” or “nicely arranged tableau[x]”—that is, to the scenic attractions of the spectacles that he designed and choreographed on a shot-by-shot basis and sequenced according to a narrative logic that had little need of any accompanying transition in time.

In early 1902, Porter studied Méliès imports, especially the 11-shot 1901 version of Barbe-bleue (Bluebeard), as preparation for his own 10-shot fairy-tale rendition of Jack and the Beanstalk (1902).[62] Shot entirely in the studio, Porter’s rendition of the well-known story (Figure 4.23) is a minor masterpiece of “nicely arranged tableaux,” some of which boast the stop-action animation of objects. As in Méliès, however, the distribution of a logical narrative among shots is the extent of Porter’s efforts to represent the passage of time. The attraction lies in the spectacle—whether of décor and costume or of stop-action special effects—contained within the shot.

See the moving picture


      Edwin S. Porter, Life of an American

      Fireman, Edison Mfg. Co., 1902-1903

An Extreme Expression of Nonlinear Continuity: Life of an American Fireman
  Clearly, then, Porter’s representational system differs from that of, say, D.W. Griffith, who was directing The Lonely Villa less than a decade later. Recall, for instance, that Griffith’s use of parallel editing maintains linear continuity: each line of the story unfolds in a logical, straightforward sequence, and the three different lines are ordered to represent an equally straightforward sequence in time (see Figure 4.17). On the other hand, Porter’s celebrated Life of an American Fireman (shot in 1902 and released in 1903) is, according to Musser, “one of the most extreme expressions of early cinema’s distinctive nonlinear continuity”:[63] although it reflects an assertion of control over the editing process and explores the possibilities of spatiotemporal relations, Porter’s treatment does not quite arrive at an understanding of how the creative rearranging of time and space can be reconciled with the stubbornly linear nature of the medium.

The nine-shot film opens on a sleeping fire chief as he dreams of a woman and child whose images are matted into a corner of the frame (Figure 4.24/Shot 1). In Shot 2, an alarm box is opened and the lever pulled (Figure 4.24/Shot 2). Now consider Shots 3 through 5:

Obviously, repetition is deemed necessary for establishing the spatiotemporal logic of events.

The same strategy, though carried to somewhat more innovative lengths, governs Shots 8 and 9, which depict the rescue of a woman and child from an upstairs room in a burning house:

Although the same events unfold twice, Porter’s construction of the two scenes does not duplicate the duration of the activities occurring in them. In Shot 8, for example, the time allotted to the fireman’s descent down the ladder is very brief; in Shot 9, it’s dramatically expanded. The two scenes, suggests Musser, “are complementary rather than redundant.”

Mere Indications of the Real
  More importantly, in a case such as this, we must understand that the success of the idea at which Porter is aiming depends on the audience’s ability to synthesize the two shots into a coherent indication of what’s transpired. There’s no effort to treat temporality with verisimilitude, but the construction of the sequence is in fact governed by a legitimate concept of continuity.[64] Think again about the indicative function of the painted-backdrop set, which informs us that a setting is supposed to be, say, a kitchen without asking us to believe that the “kitchen” we see is a kitchen (as in Figure 4.16). In much the same way, the technique of temporal overlapping informs us that simultaneous events are transpiring without asking us to believe that the overlapped actions that we’re watching are simultaneous.

“Where Space and Time Collide”: Linear Continuity and Psychological Validity
  Recall our definition, in Chapter 3.1, of continuity as the smooth spatial and temporal transition between shots. Let’s amplify that definition: a continuity (or matching) cut emphasizes a smooth transition as it condenses time and space. There is, of course, nothing “smooth” about a transition that requires repetition, which doubles a line of presentation rather than permitting events to unfold—with all their logic intact—along a single line. Repetition, moreover, introduces an inconsistency that we don’t regard as psychologically valid: we do not perceive events repetitively in the real world. In contrast, linear continuity displays a logical reliance on the criterion of psychological validity: if an action carries across a cut, we assume that both time and space are continuous.

As long as visual consistency is maintained, time, space, or both may be condensed in appropriate measure. In the early films of Edwin Porter, we witness an urge, as Fell puts it, “to play across the cut, as it were,”[65] but it’s typically compromised by a reluctance to accept psychological validity as sufficient justification for condensing time and space whenever cutting from one shot to another causes the two dimensions to “collide.” This unwillingness goes hand in hand with the erroneous intuition that linear presentation—one shot, sequence, or story must follow another—inhibits the condensation of time in any representational form of simultaneity.

Fell observes that, for filmmakers operating according to the concept of nonlinear continuity, “where space and time collide, time gives way.”[66] So it is in Life of an American Fireman. When it’s necessary to integrate two areas of space—inside the burning bedroom and outside, on the firemen’s ladder—space is handled quite naturally. The representation of time, however—the simultaneity of the “two” moments in which the fireman carries the woman to safety—must be compromised if a semblance of coherence is to be achieved.

Striving for Visual Parallelism: The Gay Shoe Clerk
  Fell adds, however, that there are certain occasions when filmmakers of the nonlinear school manage the treatment of space and time in ways that are more suggestive of linear continuity. A good example is Porter’s three-shot comedy The Gay Shoe Clerk (1903—Figure 4.25):[67]

  1. A salesman helps an attractive young woman try on a shoe.
  2. A closeup of the woman’s ankle reveals the salesman’s hand on her calf.
  3. With a cut back to the first camera position, the young woman’s chaperone thumps the salesman with her umbrella.

See the moving picture


      Edwin S. Porter, The Gay Shoe Clerk,

                   Edison Mfg. Co., 1903

Although Shot 2 occurs against a white background rather than against the shoe-store backdrop, Porter’s continuity or match cutting—the creation of an unobtrusive transition as space and time are condensed—is quite competent; nothing, as Fell puts it, is “visibly redundant.”[68] Because Shot 1 serves Shot 2 as a visual model against which to measure the verisimilitude of Shot 2, we characterize the cut as axial, and when a second shot amplifies the visual field of the first, we say that the cut is matched.

In addition, if we grant that Shot 2 is supposed to approximate the clerk’s point of view, then we can also say that this shot, in being attributed to a character, serves to further narrative developments. Moreover, while the cameraman’s lingering view of the woman’s leg would be prurient, the clerk’s would be more or less natural. Although the camera, therefore, takes up its customary masculine point of view, it clearly functions to distinguish between the spectator-voyeur’s point of view and that of the amorous clerk: “Unlike the shoe clerk,” suggests Musser, “who can touch and even kiss the girl but gets punished, the male viewer can see but runs no risk of chastisement. He can thus enjoy the shoe clerk’s fate in contrast to his own safety.”[69]

More importantly, the arrangement of shots in The Gay Shoe Clerk exemplifies two features that, as we now see, belong naturally to the properly used matching cut:

  1. In distinguishing between two points of view, the camera draws attention to its own prerogative in controlling who sees what: it’s entered the scene unobtrusively and assumed the role of narrating everything directly. In fact, it’s perhaps more accurate to say that the relationship between spectator and character points of view—as well as all of its thematic and ethical implications—are by-products of the unobtrusively narrating camera.
  2. The matching cut here strives for a certain visual parallelism that eliminates (or at least minimizes) inconsistencies that we wouldn’t accept as psychologically valid. If both the spatial and temporal continuity of an action (or series of actions) must be expressed across the cut, the matching cut reinforces the spectator’s psychological inclination to accept both time and space, simultaneously, as continuous across the cut.

Porter’s most memorable contribution to motion pictures, The Great Train Robbery, is discussed in detail in Chapter 5.2. For an overview of his life and subsequent activities in the industry, see Biographical Sketch 4.2: Edwin S. Porter.


continuity (or matching) cut  Cut emphasizing an unobtrusive transition as it condenses time and space


[47] The Emergence of Cinema, p. 179. On the roles of producers and exhibitors as “co-creators” of the moving-picture product, see Musser, Before the Nickelodeon, Ch. 5, at (accessed June 15, 2016).

[48] The Emergence of Cinema, p. 179.

[49] The Emergence of Cinema, pp. 258, 312.

[50] “Before the Nickelodeon: The Early Cinema of Edwin Porter,” Film Quarterly (Summer 1983), p. 22.

[51] See esp. Charles Musser, Before the Nickelodeon, at; Musser, “The Early Cinema of Edwin S. Porter,” Cinema Journal 19:1 (Fall 1979), pp. 1-38; rpt. The Wiley-Blackwell History of American Film, ed. Cynthia Lucia, Roy Grundermann, and Art Simon (Hoboken, NJ: Blackwell Publishing, 2012), Ch. 2, at (accessed June 15, 2016); and Musser, “Porter, Edwin S(tanton),” in World Film Directors. Volume I. 1890-1945, ed. John Wakeman (New York: H.W. Wilson, 1987), pp. 870-81. See also Musser, The Emergence of Cinema, esp. pp. 315-29, and “The Innovators 1900-1910: Time after Time,” Sight and Sound (NS) 9:3 (1999), pp. 16-18.

Many of Porter’s films are included in the Library of Congress collections entitled Inventing Entertainment: The Motion Pictures and Sound Recordings of the Edison Companies (1999), at (accessed June 15, 2016). Musser has written and directed a documentary on the work of Porter: Before the Nickelodeon: The Early Cinema of Edwin S. Porter (New York: Kino Video, 1982); a DVD version was released in 2008.

[52] For a detailed account of Porter’s movie-related pre-Edison activities, see Musser, Before the Nickelodeon, pp. 74-91, at

[53] See Musser, Before the Nickelodeon, pp. 163-66, 169-71, at and See also Musser, “The Early Cinema of Edwin S. Porter,” pp. 12-14, at

[54] See Musser, Before the Nickelodeon, p. 174, at

[55] Synopses of all the films mentioned in this section, most of them from the Edison catalogue, can be found at AFI Catalog: Silent Films (American Film Institute, 2016), at (accessed June 15, 2016).

[56] On Rube and Mandy at Coney Island, see Musser, The Emergence of Cinema, pp. 349-51, 354; Musser, “The Travel Genre in 1903-1904: Moving toward Fictional Narrative,” in Early Cinema: Space, Frame, Narrative, ed. Elsaesser with Barker, esp. pp. 124-25. See also Lauren Rabinowitz, Electric Dreamland: Amusement Parks, Movies, and American Modernity (New York: Columbia Univ. Press, 2012), pp. 136-61; Rabinowitz, For the Love of Pleasure, pp. 158-60; Rabinowitz, “The Coney Island Comedies: Bodies and Slapstick at the Amusement Park and the Movies,” in American Cinema’s Transition Period: Audiences, Instututions, Practices, ed. Charlie Keil and Shelley Stamp (Berkeley and Los Angeles: Univ. of California Press, 2004), esp. pp. 178-80.

[57] See Musser, Before the Nickelodeon, pp. 184-86, at See also Library of Congress, “Taking President McKinley’s Body from Train at Canton, Ohio,” Inventing Entertainment: The Early Motion Picture and Sound Recordings of the Edison Companies, at (accessed June 15, 2016).

[58] On The Execution of Czolgosz, see Musser, Before the Nickelodeon, pp. 187-90, at; Musser, “The Early Cinema of Edwin S. Porter,” pp. 20-22, at; Alison Griffiths, “Tableaux Morts: Execution, Cinema, and Galvanistic Fantasies,” Republics of Letters 3:3 (April 29, 2014), at (accessed June 15, 2016); Jonathan Auerbach, “Looking In: McKinley at Home,” in Body Shots: Early Cinema’s Incarnations (Berkeley and Los Angeles: Univ. of California Press, 2007), pp. 15-41; Kristen Whissel, Picturing American Modernity: Traffic, Technology, and the American Cinema (Durham, NC: Duke Univ. Press, 2008), pp. 154-56; Mary Anne Doane, The Emergence of Cinematic Time: Modernity, Contingency, the Archive (Cambridge, MA: Harvard Univ. Press, 2002), pp. 147-48; Tom Gunning, “The Execution of Czolgosz with Panorama of Auburn Prison: Is the Film ‘Authentic’?” Making Sense of Film, at (accessed June 15, 2016).

[59] See Musser, Before the Nickelodeon, pp. 209-12, at; and Musser, “The Early Cinema of Edwin S. Porter,” p. 32, at

[60] See Musser, Before the Nickelodeon, pp. 296-302, at

[61] “Before the Nickelodeon,” p. 24.

[62] On Jack and the Beanstalk, see Musser, Before the Nickelodeon, pp. 200-07, at; Musser, “The Early Cinema of Edwin S. Porter,” pp. 27-30, at; Musser, The Emergence of Cinema, pp. 325-26. See also Library of Congress, “Jack and the Beanstalk,” American Memory: Early Motion Pictures, 1897-1920, at (accessed June 15, 2016).

[63] The Emergence of Cinema, p. 327 (italics added). On Life of an American Fireman, see Musser, Before the Nickelodeon, pp. 200-07, at; Musser, “The Early Cinema of Edwin S. Porter,” pp. 33-43, at; Musser, The Emergence of Cinema, pp. 327-29; André Gaudreault, “Temporality and Narrativity in Early Cinema, 1895-1908,” in Film before Griffith, ed. Fell, pp. 316-18.

See also Martin Sopocy, “French and British Influences in Porter’s American Fireman,” Film History 1:2 (1987), pp. 137-48; and Georges Sadoul, “English Influences on the Work of Edwin S. Porter,” trans. Yvonne Templin, Hollywood Quarterly 3:1 (Autumn 1947), pp. 41-50. On the controversy over the two different versions of Life of an American Fireman—the so-called “Cross-Cut” and “Copyright” versions—see Gaudreault, “Detours in Film Narrative: The Development of Cross-Cutting,” in Early Cinema, ed. Elsaesser with Barker, pp. 133-50; and Musser, “The Early Cinema of Edwin S. Porter,” pp. 37-39.

[64] Musser, The Emergence of Cinema, p. 329. For disucussions of Porter and the development of narrative and representational practices in the early cinema, see the following: Musser, Before the Nickelodeon, Chs. 6-8, 10; Musser, “The Early Cinema of Edwin S. Porter,” pp. 33-43, at; Musser, “Moving towards Fictional Narratives,” in The Silent Cinema Reader, ed Lee Grieveson and Peter Krämer (London: Routledge, 2004), pp. 87-102; Musser, “Rethinking Early Cinema: Cinema of Attractions and Narrativity,” Yale Journal of Criticism 7:2 (Fall 1994), pp. 203-31; rpt. in The Cinema of Attractions Reloaded, ed. Strauven, pp. 389-414; Burch, “Porter, or Ambivalence,” pp. 91-106; David Lévy, Edwin S. Porter and the Origins of American Narrative Film, 1894-1907 (Montreal: McGill University, 1983); Stanley Corkin, “Edwin S. Porter and the Facts of Intelligible Narrative,” in Realism and the Birth of the Modern United States: Cinema, Literature, and Culture (Athens: Univ. of Georgia Press, 1996), Ch. 5; William R. Everdell, “Edwin S. Porter: Parts at Sixteen per Second,” The First Moderns: Profiles in the Origins of Twentieth-Century Thought (Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Press, 1997). Ch. 13.

[65] “Before the Nickelodeon,” p. 22.

[66] “Before the Nickelodeon,” p. 24.

[67] On The Gay Shoe Clerk, see Musser, Before the Nickelodeon, pp. 246-49, at; Musser, “Rethinking Early Cinema: Cinema of Attractions and Narrativity,” in The Cinema of Attractions Reloaded, ed. Wanda Strauven (Amsterdam: Amsterdam Univ. Press, 2006), esp. pp. 395-96, at (accessed June 15, 2014); Tom Gunning, “1902-1903: Movies, Stories, and Attractions,” in American Cinema, 1890-1909, ed. Gaudreault, pp. 112-32; and Maureen Turim, “High Angles on Shoes: Cinema, Gender, and Footwear,” in Footnotes on Shoes, ed. Shari Benstock and Suzanne Ferris (New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers Univ. Press, 2001), esp. pp. 59-61, at (accessed June 15, 2016).

[68] “Before the Nickelodeon,” p. 24.

[69] The Emergence of Cinema, p. 349.

Back to top

Return to CHAPTER 4/Part 1

Go to CHAPTER 5/Part 1