Rogues, Romance, and Exoticism in French Cinema of the 1930s
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Rogues, Romance, and Exoticism in French Cinema of the 1930s

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ISBN-13:
9781611476149
Seiten:
215
Autor:
Colleen Kennedy-Karpat
eBook Typ:
Adobe Digital Editions
Kopierschutz:
Adobe DRM [Hard-DRM]
Sprache:
Englisch
Beschreibung:

Empire alone cannot contain the range of the exoticist imaginary in French fiction cinema of the 1930s. Rogues, Romance, and Exoticism in French Cinema of the 1930s proposes a critical framework for exoticist cinema that subsumes and exceeds colonial territory, analyzing the recurring figures, common settings, major stars, key plot devices, and narrative outcomes that dominated exoticist cinema at its popular peak.

Many popular French films of the 1930s captured the world and brought it into neighborhood cinemas for filmgoers who craved adventure. These films often served as visual postcards from the French empire, which enjoyed an unprecedented visibility in domestic popular culture between the world wars. But the public appetite for the exotic also transcended imperial borders. Exoticist films displayed landscapes and different that lay beyond the metropole, many of which were not subject to European rule. This broad conception of the exotic meant that French narrative cinema represented both colonial and non-colonial settings and populations, developing a coherent set of tropes that were shaped, yet not entirely defined, by the politics of imperial rule.

Empire alone cannot address the full range of the French exoticist imaginary that was projected onto movie screens in the 30s. Only by venturing beyond imperial boundaries can we fully understand how the French saw non-Westerners and, by extension, how they saw themselves during this tumultuous decade.
Rogues, Romance, and Exoticism in French Cinema of the 1930s proposes a critical framework for exoticist cinema that includes and exceeds the limits of empire. From rogue colons to the métisse in love, from the deserts of North Africa to the streets of Shanghai, this book identifies and analyzes recurring figures, common settings, major stars, plot devices, and narrative outcomes that dominated exoticist cinema at its popular peak.


CONTENTS
Acknowledgments
Exoticism in 1930s France: The Colonial and Beyond

PART ONE: Men Outside the Mainstream

Chapter 1: Jean Gabin,
le cafard, and Western Solidarity
La Bandera (1935): Cultural Cohesion and Colonial Mercenaries
Pépé le Moko (1937) and the Multiethnic Exotic
Le Messager (1937): Failure to Adapt

Chapter 2: Assimilation Anxiety and Rogue
Colons
Men Who Stayed Too Long
El Guelmouna, marchand de sable (1931): Rivalry (and Russians) in Rural Algeria
Amok (1934): Cultural Readmission at All Costs
L’Esclave blanc (1936): Segregationist Parable

PART TWO: Romancing the Exotic

Chapter 3: Tragedy and Triumph for Interracial Love
Caïn, aventure des mers exotiques (1930) and Baroud (1932): Lasting Love in the Colonies
Le Simoun (1933) and Yamilé sous les cèdres (1939): Triumph, Tragedy, Responsibility
Women’s Agency and Exoticist Romance

Chapter 4:
Métissage and Cultural Repatriation
La Dame de Malacca (1937): European Frog, Exotic Prince
(Re)claiming French Identity in
La Maison du Maltais (1938)
L’Esclave blanche (1939): A Westerner in the Harem
Redefining Exoticist Romance

PART THREE: France Imagines the Far East

Chapter 5: Shanghai Fantasies and the Geishas of Joinville
Mollenard (1938) and Le Drame de Shanghaï (1938): Exiled in (and from) the East
Yoshiwara (1936) and La Bataille (1934): Lovers and Fighters in the Land of the Rising Sun

Chapter 6: Sessue Hayakawa’s French Resurrection, 1936-1939
Forfaiture (1937): A Legend Revised, a Legacy Reborn
Patrouille blanche (1939/1942): Bringing the Other Back Home
Macao, l’enfer du jeu (1939/1942): The Exotic Father

Exoticism in Transition
L’Homme du Niger (1940): Patriotism and Paternalism in Africa
Malaria (1943): Imperial Stasis
Descendants of Interwar Exoticism from Decolonization to the New Century

Annotated Filmography
Bibliography
Index