Denis Condon, PhD
Consultation Hours Academic Year 2012-13
I lecture on cinema history and theory at both the Department of English and the Centre for Media Studies, teaching courses on Irish cinema, Hollywood cinema, documentary, and European cinema.
My current research interests focus on film in Ireland in the late-nineteenth and early twentieth centuries and on the interrelationships between the various kinds of contemporary popular culture that made up the entertainment world. My research has included work on such areas as popular theatre, tourism, and spectatorship. I am interested in exploring the intermedial nature of popular media and in how such audience-based approaches as reception studies complicate text-based approaches to these forms.
Early Irish Cinema 1895-1921 This book examines early and silent cinema and its contexts in Ireland, 1895-1921. It explores the extent to which cinema fostered a new way of looking in and at Ireland and the extent to which the new technology inherited forms of looking from the image-producing cultural practices of the theatre, tourism, and such public events as state occasions, political protests, and sports meetings. It argues that before cinema emerged as an independent institution in the late 1910s, it was comprehensively intermedial, not only adapting to the presentational strategies of such forms as the fairground attraction, the melodrama, and the magic lantern lecture, but actually constituting these forms and altering them in the process. In locating cinema in relation to popular and elite culture during a key period of Irish history, it draws in particular on surviving films and photographs; articles and illustrations in newspapers, magazines, and trade journals; contemporary accounts; and official documents. Working against approaches that see early cinema as a precursor to the so-called 'classical' cinema of the 1920s onwards, the book provide its readers with a wealth of contemporary material that allows them to see early cinema in its own terms as an evolving (audio-)visual form.
- ‘Resisting the Tourist Gaze in Provincial Irish Picture Houses in the Early 1910s’, in François de la Bretèque, Angel Quintana and Pierre Véronneau (eds), Peripheral Early Cinemas (forthcoming).
- ‘The Volta Myth’, Film Ireland, May–June 2007, p. 43.
- ‘Irish Audiences Watch Their First U.S. Feature: The Corbett-Fitzsimmons Fight (1897)’, in Ruth Barton (ed.), Screening Irish-America: A Reader (Dublin: Irish Academic Press, forthcoming 2009).
- ‘Politics and the Cinematograph: The Boer War and the Funeral of Thomas Ashe’, Field Day Review, Issue 4 (2008), pp. 127–39.
- ‘“Spleen of a Cabinet Minister at Work”: Exhibiting X-Rays and the Cinematograph in Ireland, 1896’, in John Hill and Kevin Rockett (eds), Film History and National Cinema: Studies in Irish Film 2 (Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2005), pp. 69–78.
- ‘Cinematographing Killarney’, in Jim Larner (ed.), Killarney: History and Heritage (Cork: Collins, 2005), pp. 215–20.
- ‘Filming the Story of Ireland: The Yoking Together of Historical Drama and Contemporary Newsreel in Silent Irish Films’, in Kevin Rockett and John Hill (eds), National Cinemas and Beyond: Studies in Irish Film 1 (Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2004), pp. 32–42.
- ‘Rebels and Redcoats: Political Melodrama in the Kalem Company’s Irish Films’, in Neal Alexander, Shane Murphy, and Anne Oakman (eds), To the Other Shore: Cross-Currents in Irish and Scottish Studies (Belfast: Cló Ollscoil na Banríona, 2004), pp. 28–36.
- ‘Touristic Work and Pleasure: The Kalem Company in Killarney’, Film and Film Culture, Issue 2 (2003), pp. 7–16.
- ‘The Colleen Bawn Rock and Daniel O’Connell’s Bed: Sights on the Kalem Company’s Virtual Tour of Killarney’, NUI Maynooth Postgraduate Research Record 2002, pp. 89–93.