World cinema; little magazines; Close Up; politics; H. D.


This essay explores how two interwar film magazines, Close Up (1927-33) and Experimental Cinema (1930-4), pioneered early forms of world cinema as part of wider postwar attempts to forge transnationalism, improved international relations, and humanistic dialogue among people and nations. I argue that both magazines presented the cinema as a form of global community through their establishment of film societies and clubs, inclusive contributor policies, turn toward Russian cinema, and staunch rejection of Hollywood cinema’s commercialism. These strategies enabled the construction of a shared, albeit idealistic, vision of world cinema centered on comparative approaches, anti-imperialism, and the preservation and documentation of a diverse range of global film experiments. I also explore some of the tensions that threatened each magazine’s distinct theorization of world cinema, such as the politics of inclusion/ exclusion, the experimental/ commercial dichotomy, the rise of nationalism, Hollywood’s anti-foreign movement, and the inevitable human conflicts that arose among experimental film groups and wider artistic networks.

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The Space Between: Literature and Culture 1914-1945

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Author's version


Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.


The Space Between Society


College of Arts and Humanities


Orlando (Main) Campus





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