Essays & Images on Cities, Travel and Contemporary Culture. A web journal of James A. Clapp, Ph.D., an UrbisMedia Ltd. Production

Vol.88.2: CINEMA CHINA, Part 2

© 1937, MGM

© 1937, MGM

The good earth of MGM’s expensive ($2.8 million) 1937 film of Pearl S. Buck’s award winning book was not of Chinese soil. Filmed entirely on a five-hundred-acre farm Read More

Vol.88.1: CINEMA CHINA, Part 1

© 1935, Fox Film Corp

© 1935, Fox Film Corp

Like most Westerners of my generation the author came to know China and especially the Chinese from Western actors playing Asians in “yellowface” in The Read More

Vol.85.5: PHOOEY ON FANTASY

Image manipulated by UrbisMedia, 2013

Image manipulated by UrbisMedia, 2013

I am a realist. I don’t mean that in a personal sense, because I realize that I am also in many respects also a “romantic.” But, since I define being a “romantic” Read More

Vol.85.4: MY FIRST MOVIE

V085-04_OneMillionBC

“My parents had a good reason for taking me to the movies all the time, because I had been sick with asthma since I was three years old and I apparently couldn’t Read More

Vol.85.2: THE CITY AS CINEMA

The Cinema: a little script

INT: SUBWAY STATION, IRT, NEW YORK, MARCH 23, 2014

MEDIUM SHOT: Subway platform and train and modest crowd

ACTION. Mark enters the door of Read More

Vol.82.8: Streets of Gold: Immigrants, the City and the Cinema, Part 5

Clint Eastwood defending his neighborhood in Gran Torino. © 2008, Warner Bros.

Clint Eastwood defending his neighborhood in Gran Torino. © 2008, Warner Bros.

The Enduring Theme

The encounter of different cultures is perhaps the oldest, and most enduring, American social theme. It is not uniquely an American phenomenon, but Read More

Vol.81.6: Streets of Gold: Immigrants, the City and the Cinema, Part 4

The Joy Luck Club, Hollywood Pictures, 1993

The Joy Luck Club, Hollywood Pictures, 1993

Acculturation

The relationship between immigrants and American cities has, on balance, been a reciprocally beneficial one. Immigrants have found opportunity in the city, Read More

Vol.81.5: Streets of Gold: Immigrants, the City and the Cinema, Part 3

Chaplin comforts fellow nervous immigrants prior to disembarkation. The Immigrant, Mutual Pictures, 1917

Chaplin comforts fellow nervous immigrants prior to disembarkation. The Immigrant, Mutual Pictures, 1917

The Golden Door

The drama of the American city was often a result of some of its internal contradictions. America might be the only nation in the world with a “welcome Read More

Vol.81.3: Streets of Gold: Immigrants, the City and the Cinema, Part 2

© 2006, UrbisMedia

© 2006, UrbisMedia

Cities were the first places to bring together peoples of different ethnic and racial backgrounds; hence the first places to test assimilation, tolerance, competition, Read More

Vol.81.2: Streets of Gold: Immigrants, the City, and the Cinema, Part 1

I came to America because in the old country I had heard that the streets of America were “paved with gold.” But I learned three things after Read More

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