Representational technologies including photography,
phonography, and the cinema have helped define modernity itself.
Since the nineteenth century, these technologies have challenged
our trust of sensory perception, given the ephemeral unprecedented
parity with the eternal, and created profound temporal and spatial
displacements. But current approaches to representational and
cultural history often neglect to examine these technologies. James
Lastra seeks to remedy this neglect.
Lastra argues that we are nowhere better able to track the
relations between capital, science, and cultural practice than in
photography, phonography, and the cinema. In particular, he maps
the development of sound recording from its emergence to its
confrontation with and integration into the Hollywood film.
Reaching back into the late eighteenth century, to natural
philosophy, stenography, automata, and human physiology, Lastra
follows the shifting relationships between our senses, technology,
Subjects: Film Studies, Technology, History
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