New Publication: Divine Work, Japanese Colonial Cinema and its Legacy

Divine Work, Japanese Colonial Cinema and its Legacy

Kate Taylor Jones

Bloomsbury Publishing/Ebook/Pages: 256/ISBN: 9781501306143


For many East Asian nations, cinema and Japanese Imperialism arrived within a few years of each other. Exploring topics such as landscape, gender, modernity and military recruitment, this study details how the respective national cinemas of Japan’s territories struggled under, but also engaged with, the Japanese Imperial structures. Japan was ostensibly committed to an ethos of pan-Asianism and this study explores how this sense of the transnational was conveyed cinematically across the occupied lands. Taylor-Jones traces how cinema in the region post-1945 needs to be understood not only in terms of past colonial relationships, but also in relation to how the post-colonial has engaged with shifting political alliances, the opportunities for technological advancement and knowledge, the promise of larger consumer markets, and specific historical conditions of each decade.

Kate Taylor Jones is Senior Lecturer in East Asian Studies at The University of Sheffield, UK. She has published on topics including colonial Japanese and Korean cinema, cinema and landscape in East Asia, and domestic violence and the sex trade. She is author of Rising Sun, Divided Land: Japanese and South Korean Filmmakers (2013); and editor-in-chief of the East Asian Journal of Popular Culture. She is co-editor with Fiona Handyside of International Cinema and the Girl: Local Issues, Transnational Contexts (2015).

New Publication: Propaganda, Persuasion and the Great War

Propaganda, Persuasion and the Great War: Heredity in the modern sale of products and political ideas

Pier Paolo Pedrini

Routledge/Hardback/Ebook/Pages: 226/ISBN: 9781138293915


How to persuade citizens to enlist? How to convince them to fight in a war which was, for many, distant in terms of kilometres as well as interest? Modern persuasion techniques, both political and commercial, were used to motivate enlistment and financial support to build a “factory of consensus”. The propagandists manipulated the public, guiding their thoughts and actions according to the wishes of those in power and were therefore the forerunners of spin doctors and marketing and advertising professionals. Their posters caught the attention of members of the public with images of children and beautiful women, involving them, nourishing their inner needs for well-being and social prestige, motivating them by showing them testimonials in amusing and adventurous situations, and inspiring their way of perceiving the enemy and the war itself, whose objective was to “make the world safe for democracy”.

In the discourse of this strategy we find storytelling, humour, satire and fear, but also the language of gestures, recognized as important for the completeness of messages. Were the propagandists “hidden persuaders” who knew the characteristics of the human mind? We do not know for certain. However, their posters have a personal and consistent motivation which this book intends to demonstrate.

Pier Paolo Pedrini teaches Techniques of Persuasion for the Masters Program in Public Management and Policy at the University of Italian Switzerland, Psychology of Communication at the Institute of Continuing Education and at other advanced schools. A researcher at the Ecole Nationale de l’Administration Publique (Université du Québec en Outaouais, Gatineau), he is also an advertising agent and a consultant for marketing and advertising.


New Publication: Hollywood Soundscapes

Hollywood Soundscapes: Film Sound Style, Craft and Production in the Classical Era

Helen Hanson

British Film Institute/Paperback/Hardcover/
Ebook/Pages: 184/ISBN: 9781844575046

£22.99 (Paperback)



The technical crafts of sound in classical Hollywood cinema have, until recently, remained largely ‘unsung’ by histories of the studio era. Yet film sound – voice, music and sound effects – is a crucial aspect of film style and has been key to engaging and holding audiences since the transition to sound by Hollywood’s major studios in 1929.
This innovative new text restores sound technicians to Hollywood’s creative history. Exploring a range of films from the early sound period (1931) through to the late studio period (1948), and drawing on a wide range of archival sources, the book reveals how Hollywood’s sound designers worked and why they worked in the ways that they did. The book demonstrates how sound technicians developed conventions designed to tell stories through sound, placing them within the production cultures of studio era filmmaking, and uncovering a history of collective and collaborative creativity. In doing so, it traces the emergence of a body of highly skilled sound personnel, able to apply expert technical knowledge in the science of sound to the creation of cinematic soundscapes that are alive with mood and sensation.

Helen Hanson is Senior Lecturer in Film Studies at the University of Exeter, UK. Her research focuses on film style, histories of American cinema and the film industry, feminism and popular culture.

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