A Film Scholarship without Films? Reimagining the History of Israeli Cinema Culture through the Archive

The International Association for Media and History (IAMHIST) & The Steve Tisch School of Film and Television, Tel Aviv University

 July 5-6, 2022


All sessions take place at the Mexico Building, Room 206A (with live streaming via Zoom)

Event is free to attend

Registration link:


Programme PDF:

Film Scholarship without Films Programme


Tuesday 5 July 

09:00-09:30: Registration

09:30-10:30: Greetings and Opening Lecture

Eran Neuman, Dean of the Yolanda and David Katz Faculty of the Arts, Tel Aviv University

Ohad Landesman, Interim Head of Cinema Studies Track, The Steve Tisch School of Film and Television, Tel Aviv University

Dan Chyutin and Yael Mazor, Conference Organizers, Tel Aviv University: “If you build it, they will come”: Notes Towards a Future History of Israeli Cinema

10:30-10:45 Coffee Break

10:45-12:15 Panel A: Reimagining the Archive and Alternate Film Histories (Chair: Ohad Landesman, Tel Aviv University)

Dan Chyutin: ‘From Israeli Film to Israeli Film Culture: Reimagining the 1950s’

Boaz Hagin, Tel Aviv University: ‘The Living Desert: Reimagining and Film Discourse in Israel before the 1970s’

Olga Gershenson, University of Massachusetts-Amherst: ‘New Israeli Horror: Film History Without Films’

12:15-12:30: Coffee Break

12:30-14:00 Panel B: Transnational Connections and Cultural Diplomacy (Chair: Yael Mazor, Tel Aviv University)

Giora Goodman, Kinneret College on the Sea of Galilee: ‘Israeli Films and Israeli Cultural Diplomacy, 1948-1967’

Naomi Rolef, independent scholar: ‘The Twists and Turns of German Influence in Early Israeli Cinema: An Archival Journey’

Hilla Lavie, Hebrew University: ‘”An Authentic and Optimistic Israeli Story”: West German Television Imagines Israel after the Six Day War (1967)’

14:00-15:15 Lunch Break

15:15-16:45 Panel C: Beyond Textual Analysis: Production and Reception (Chair: Dan Chyutin, Tel Aviv University)

Rachel S. Harris, University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign: ‘Eldorado: Israel’s First Film Noir’

Elad Wexler, Ethiopian Jewry Heritage Center: ‘The Way to Hole in the Moon (1965): How Early Drafts of the Script Lead to a New and Deeper Understanding of the Film’

Iddo Better Pocker and Orit Rozin, Tel Aviv University: ‘Operation Thunderbolt Between Cinematic Blockbuster and National Propaganda’

16:45-17.15 Coffee Break

17.15-18.30 Panel D: Creative Biographies (Chair: Pablo Utin, Tel Aviv University)

Israela Shaer-Meoded, Tel Aviv University: ‘Witnessing Beyond Borders: On Edna Politi’s Cinematic Testimony of Palestinian Life During the Yom Kippur War (1973)’

David Shalit, independent scholar: ‘Print My Legend: The Americanization of Menachem Golan’

18.30-19.00 Coffee Break and Light Refreshments

 19:00-20.00 Event: Artist Talk

A conversation with filmmaker Amos Gitai on the stakes of personal archiving

Wednesday 6 July

09:30-11:00 Panel E: The Limits of Israeli Film Culture (Chair: Ori Levin, Tel Aviv University)

Jonathan Yovel, University of Haifa: ‘The Subversive and the Repulsive: a Sociolegal History of the Aesthetics of Censorship over Films in Israel’

Ori Yaakobovich, Tel Aviv University: ‘Anatomy of Censorship: Censorship of Foreign Cinematic Sexuality by the Israeli Hegemony’

Rotem Yifat, independent scholar: ‘Making Film History through Legislation: The Case of the Israel Film Fund’

11:00-11:30 Coffee Break

11:30-13:30 Archivist Roundtable

Deborah Steinmetz, Director, Steven Spielberg Jewish Film Archive

Omri Horesh, Director, Tel Aviv Cinematheque Film Library

Uri Kolodney, Film and Video and Hebrew, Jewish, and Israel Studies Liaison Librarian, University of Texas Libraries

Marat Parkhomovsky, Co-Creator, Israeli Cinema Testimonial Database

Noa Ben Ya’akov, Archivist, Yad Tabenkin Research and Documentation Center of the Kibbutz Movement

Hila Abraham, Digital Archive Program Director, Jerusalem Cinematheque-Israel Film Archive

13:30-14:30 Lunch Break

14:30-16:00 Film History and Digital Humanities: Methodological Workshop 1

Christian Olesen, University of Amsterdam: ‘Rethinking New Cinema History Methods with Jean Desmet’s Digitized Business Archive: Textual and Visual Approaches’

16:00-16:15 Coffee Break

16:15-17:45 Film History and Digital Humanities: Methodological Workshop 2

Sarah-Mai Dang, Philipps-Universität Marburg: ‘Visualizing Research: Reflecting Data-based Methods in Digital Film History’

17:45-18:15 Coffee Break

18:15-19:45 Keynote Lecture

Eric Hoyt, Professor of Media Production and Associate Professor of Film, Media and Cultural Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison: ‘Global Movie Magazines, Hollywood Pressbooks, and the Data of Media History’

Respondent: Yael Netzer, University of Haifa

Conference Organizers: Dan Chyutin and Yael Mazor | Conference Producer: Alon Judkovsky

Culbert Family Book Prize for Publications on Media History dealing with Propaganda, Mass Persuasion and Public Opinion: Winner 2022

The IAMHIST Council and the editorial board of the Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television are delighted to announce that the winner of the 2022 Culbert Family Book Prize for publications on media history dealing with propaganda is John Maxwell Hamilton for Manipulating the Masses: Woodrow Wilson and the Birth of American Propaganda (Louisiana State UP, 2021).


The comprehensive book deals with the cultural history of pervasive, systematic propaganda as an instrument of the state that evolved from the establishment of the Committee on Public Information (CPI) by the Woodrow Wilson administration on 14 April 1917 around the time the US entered the Great War. As author John Maxwell Hamilton argues: ‘Every element of the Information State has antecedents in the CPI’. The international jury members of IAMHIST film historians (Professor James Chapman, UK, Professor Leen Engelen, Belgium, and Professor Tobias Hochscherf, Germany) were impressed by the splendidly researched and wide-ranging book on the  cradle of modern propaganda. The study not only fleshes out the ‘mechanics’ behind propaganda, it also explains how propaganda functions within a democracy, often seriously challenging the very system it seeks to protect. The author and LSU Press ought to be congratulated for this book that marshalled a wealth of archive sources to make a genuinely new contribution to the field. It is lucidly written and provides a compelling narrative that will be of interest beyond just the field of propaganda histories. Since Manipulating the Masses invites future research and engagement with its findings, the book promotes the ongoing scholarly engagement with attempts to win the heart and mind of people through information policies and propaganda that shape our world to this day.

David H. Culbert (1943-2017) was a diligent media historian. More than anything else, his scholarly interest was the research on the history of propaganda, information policy and mass persuasion. He was John L. Loos Professor of History at Louisiana State University, an active IAMHIST council member and editor of the Historical Journal of Film, Radio, and Television from 1992 to 2012.

The book prize for publications on media history dealing with propaganda, mass persuasion and public opinion is awarded on behalf of the Culbert family for outstanding works looking at the history of ways in which media, public opinion, politics and diplomacy interact. The $2,500 prize is awarded biennially. The prize has been established by an endowment from Lubna Culbert.

Books for Review Spring 2022

IAMHIST received copies of the following books and is looking for reviewers (Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television). If you are interested, please send a message (mentioning the full title of the book and your postal address) to Ciara Chambers (ciarachambers3@gmail.com).  It would help if you could tell us a bit about your own research and expertise and/or why you are interested in reviewing this title. Please also note that some books may still be available from previous lists.

Badley, Linda. Lars Von Trier Beyond Depression. Wallflower Press, 2022.

Berke, Annie. Their Own Best Creations: Women Writers in Postwar Television. University of California Press, 2022.

Billson, Anne. The Thing. BFI, 2021.
Brasiske, Inesa. Jonas Mekas: The Camera Was Always Running. Yale University Press, 2022.
Cain, Victoria. Schools and Screens: A Watchful History. MIT Press, 2021.
Cooper, Martin. Radio’s Legacy in Popular Culture: The Sounds of British Broadcasting over the Decades. Bloomsbury, 2022. Already assigned for review.
Cuevas, Efrén. Filming History from Below: Microhistorical Documentaries. Wallflower, 2022.
Fabian, Steven, Marissa Moorman, and Josh Shepperd, eds. Breaking News. Radical History Review, 2021.
Faucette, Brian. Hawaii Five-O. Wayne State University Press, 2022. Already assigned for review.
Grant, Barry Keith. 100 American Horror Films. British Film Institute, 2022.
Havas, Julia. Woman Up: Invoking Feminism in Quality Television. Wayne State University Press, 2022.
Hinkelman, Jeffrey A. For No Reason at All:The Changing Narrative of the First World War in American Film. University Press of Mississippi, 2022. Already assigned for review.
Mizejewski, Linda. The Americans. Wayne State University Press, 2022. Already assigned for review.
Neto, João Nemi. Cannibalizing Queer: Brazilian Cinema from 1970 to 2015. Wayne State University Press, 2022.
Perry, Chris, and Eric Henry Sanders. SceneWriting: The Missing Manual for Screenwriters. Bloomsbury, 2022.
Pomerance, Murray. Color It True: Impressions of Cinema, 2022.  Already assigned for review.
Preece, Julian. Lost Honour of Katharina Blum (Die Verlorene Ehre Der Katharina Blum). BFI, 2022. Already assigned for review.
Rony, Fatimah Tobing. How Do We Look? Revisiting Visual Biopolitics. Duke University Press, 2021. Already assigned for review. 
Rühse, Viola. Film Und Kino Als Spiegel: Siegfried Kracauers Filmschriften Aus Deutschland Und Frankreich. De Gruyter, 2022.
Schleser, Max. Smartphone Filmmaking: Theory and Practice. Bloomsbury, 2021. Already assigned for review. 
Sharp, Ilana Shub. Esfir Shub: Pioneer of Documentary Filmmaking. Bloomsbury, 2021. Already assigned for review.
Shor, Francis. Soupy Sales and the Detroit Experience. Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2021.
Stern, Julia A. Bette Davis Black and White. University of Chicago Press, 2021. Already assigned for review.
Vasudevan, Ravi. Media and the Constitution of the Political. Sage, 2022. Already assigned for review.
Winterbottom, Michael, ed. Dark Matter: Independent Filmmaking in the 21st Century. British Film Institute, 2021. Already assigned for review. 
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