Professor Helen Hanson of the University of Exeter will lead a talk on some of the many women filmmakers who were working in American cinema in the early 20th century, including Alice Guy-Blache, Lois Weber, Frances Marion and Dorothy Arzner. Professor Hanson will showcase the richness of their creative input into industry's early films, demonstrating their command of cinematic storytelling and visual style, and will ask students to consider why these women have not been the focus of existing mainstream film histories. In addition, she will reflect upon the intersection between gender and the structures of industry and cultures of production in American filmmaking, tracing the period from early cinema in the 1910s when many women directed and produced films, and even ran their own companies, contrasting to the period after the establishment of the major filmmaking corporations of the Hollywood studio system when there were fewer women in directing roles, but many working below-the-line in craft or administrative jobs.

This event will take place in Reilly Hall, room 244. It is sponsored by the Le Moyne College Film Program and Gender and Women's Studies Program, as well as the Central New York Humanities Corridor.