LC has published Decision regarding the final disposition of LCSH headings for video recordings. In summary, the decisions are:
- Topical headings (MARC tag 150) denoting a genre or form of video recording will be cancelled in favor of the correlated film headings;
- The heading Video mini-series will be revised to Film mini-series and the heading Television mini-series will be retained;
- The existing topical heading Interactive video will be made plural and a genre/form heading will be created; and,
- Genre/form headings for Internet videos, podcasts, and webisodes will be created.
SPEAKER: Janis Young
EVENT DATE: 07/02/2009
RUNNING TIME: 53 minutes
In 2007, the Library of Congress embarked upon a project to create a system of genre/form headings, which describe what a work is rather than what it is about, as subject headings do. This presentation will explain the motivations for undertaking the project, including the need to anticipate the linked data requirements of the new generation of search engines and user interfaces, and also enumerate the authority record distribution channels, which furnish data for both human use and for data mining and computer manipulation. In addition, the presentation will address the practical impacts of this project on LC staff and users alike.
Call#: Van Pelt Library PR448.G6 G36 2000
Announcement on PCC list:
"The ALCTS-CCS Subject Analysis Committee Subcommittee on Genre/Form Implementation invites interested parties to join a listserv discussion on issues relating to LC genre/form (155) subject headings and their implementation in library catalogs. The subcommittee will facilitate the discussion, posing a different question every week. The discussion will begin later this month. If you are interested in participating, please go to http://lists.ala.org/sympa/info/form-genre and choose Subscribe."
On July 9th, 2008, the Cataloging Policy and Support Office (CPSO) presented a report on the moving image genre/form project to the Library of Congress Acquisitions and Bibliographic Access (ABA) management team. The report includes recommendations for expanding the genre/form project beyond the moving image and radio program headings assigned and created by LC's Motion Picture, Broadcasting, and Recorded Sound Divison. ABA management has approved this expansion to include other disciplines and CPSO will be releasing further details on implementation strategies as these are developed.
Robey, Tim. “THE MYSTERY OF THE FRAT-BOY MOVIE Critics hate them - but gross-out comedies top the charts. Like, why is that, dude, asks
Tim Robey.” The Daily Telegraph. 2006. April 2008
Robey gives the London perspective on movies as “frat-boy bacchanals,” which is apparently unfamiliar with the concept of a fraternity. His definition of a frat boy is as follows: “Frat boys slip bodily fluids into each other's pints. They view the opposite sex as a first-come, first-served ambulant buffet of hair and breasts.” With this disturbing image, it is easy to see why so many frat films receive awful reviews, being dramatically described as “a plunge into depravity.” What Robey does not understand is why all types of frat films, Jackass Number Two along with American Pie, do well. He describes Jackass as “real frat boys doing real, very painful things to each other, live on camera.” The truth is that frat boys actually do similarly horrible things. The more favorable truth is that they exploit these conquests only to those within the fraternity, not to the entire world. Robey thinks the point of some of these films (or the point of actually seeing them) could be to desensitize audiences and act as an “excruciating endurance test.”
The film that falls into the opposite of this category, that of great frat flicks, is Animal House. One reason could be that it actually has a plot, but Harold and Kumar also makes it on the list. Robey’s point is that these films should not automatically match the need to entertain with the need to repulse. It seems that these films get more angry response for vulgarity than for racism or misogyny. Tim Matheson’s character puts on an act to sexually take advantage of the friend of his date, who recently died in a kiln explosion. So what? However, when Stevie from Jackass puts a hook through his mouth, audiences react. This is not necessarily wrong, and doesn’t give insight into a culture’s morals. It just points out what an audience isn’t used to in society. Though Animal House is a classic, Jackass is daring: no plot, no shirt, no shoes, and especially no dignity.
Guidelines on Subject Access to Individual Works of Fiction, Drama, Etc., 2nd edition, was published in 2000. The Guidelines constitute a recommendation for national standard practice in the provision of genre and subject access to individual works of fiction, drama, poetry, humor, and folklore in all formats.
The files can be downloaded from the GSAFD Site at Northwestern University.
Call#: Van Pelt Library Z695.1.L6 G84 1990
JN: Post Script
SO: Post Script Vol XXIII nr 2 (Winter-Spring 2004); p 33-47
TI: Mikhail Bakhtin and the Sundance Kid: generic dialogue in the western.
AT: Article; Bibliography; Illustrations
Although all film watchers agree that Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid can be defined within the construct of the Western film genre, scholars such as Michael Dunne argue that Butch Cassidy did more than adhere to the tropes of this genre but served to expand it as well. In his essay “Mikhail Bakhtin and the Sundance Kid: Generic Dialogue in the Western,” Dunne explores a theory known as “Dialogism” in which all films of a specific genre participate in a figurative and literal dialogue through which the definition of the genre is shaped and remolded. He focuses his article specifically around the way Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid was able to address the ideals of its contemporary audiences into an otherwise more traditional genre.
As Dunne points out, the extraordinary success of Butch Cassidy, during a time period in which the filming of Westerns was on the decline, is the greatest indicator that its filmmakers were able to accomplish something special with their film. Audiences welcomed director George Hills “contemporary variations” on the Western as it “increased the genre’s literacy” and made it more relevant to audiences of the 1960’s and today. Though certain genre conventions such as Sundance’s gun skills and the method of train robbery were conserved, the distinct actions and ideals of Hill’s protagonists are what initiated the changing dialogue between Paul Newman and Robert Redford and other heroes of the Western past. When compared to the honorable Western heroes played by actors like Roy Rogers, Butch and Sundance seem downright dishonest. Yet scenes such as Butch’s “knife fight” with Harvey Logan and Sundance’s apparent “rape” of Etta Place, only make the heroes appear more human allow contemporary audience to relate to them more easily.
Despite Hill’s ability to adapt the Western genre, however, the plot of his film is in many ways a reflection on where the genre itself is headed. Just as the modern world and changing times impinge on Butch and Sundance’s ability to live freely about the countryside, so too do modern times begin to clamp down on the Western genre in its classical sense. Sheriff Ray Bledsoe tells Butch and Sundance, “Your times is over, and you’re gonna die bloody. And all you can do is choose where.” Perhaps Hill felt the same way about films based around the Wild West. Yet instead of choosing “where” the Western film genre would die, Hill created a work that serves as a template for how to bridge the outdated Western genre into modern American cinema. Dunne believes that Hill was able to “transform the generic form…in relation to social change.” Thus, instead of marking the conclusion of the “dialogue” with the Western genre, Butch Cassidy was able to “interrogate it” while producing a relevant “aesthetic experiences” for audiences to come.
This article seeks to describe a new breed of films that emerged in the 1970’s. Francis Ford Coppola’s The Godfather was one of the films that epitomized and exemplified this type of film, which was the epic melodrama. The article describes this type of film as pessimistic and theatrical, with heavy political and social influences such as Vietnam and Watergate, as well as formal European influences, which fit well with the heavy emphasis in this film on Italian-Americans.
The films that fall into this category are characterized by the larger than life characters, the intense emotions, and most importantly the great battle between good and evil. In the case of The Godfather, this battle became an inner moral one, but nonetheless capable of creating just as much drama. As the article continues, this film, as a direct result of the melodrama, strikes a chord within audiences. It is suggested that perhaps this is simply because of the time during which it was released, and the political and social emotions that were still in the air as a result of Vietnam. Thus, ultimately the historical and political events of the time become “a springboard” through which these movies become about much larger issues. The Godfather, as claimed in the article is not simply about an Italian family linked to the mob, but also one of “greed, vengeance, and power.”
One of the symbolic manifestations in these films are the ways in which theater itself is brought into the script. In The Godfather, specifically, there are various instances before turning points in the film, or bits that are used to foreshadow, where Italian melodrama is viewed. Another important aspect to these films are the manner in which they are rooted in particular genres already, gangster films in the case of The Godfather, and thus particular scenes, such as the wedding, further place the film in this context as well as providing another layer, emphasizing the family and Italian heritage of the Corleones.
The seventh article in the novel, titled Classical Hollywood Comedy, this article (p.123-146), analyzes the screwball comedies of the 1930s and 1940s. Karnick argues that although the plots for these comedies were inherently similar, the humoristic elements in these films helped to distinguish themselves. Along with the similar plotlines, these films have common narrative structures that are further complicated by humor. Humor, according to the author, is the result of incongruity between what is expected and what is actually seen onscreen, and is eventually followed by resolution. This relationship of incongruity and resolution is thus a way to break up the narrative and lessen the predictability of the film.
Karnick also utilizes Vladimir Propp’s methodology of the establishment of genres to analyze screwball comedies. Propp’s work, which compared the themes of 150 Russian folktales by separating parts of tales into “functions,” “spheres of action,” and “moves,” showed that while characters’ names changed between the stories, their functions and actions within the actual narrative did not. Karnick thus uses this theory and applies it to the screwball comedy to explain the recurring plots, but different elements of humor. Karnick is thus able to categorize screwball comedies into two general groups, “Comedies of Commitment” and “Comedies of Reaffirmation.” Commitment comedies, such as Bringing Up Baby, tend to focus on the establishment a central couple, whereas reaffirmation comedies concern the reestablishment of a couple (131). According to Karnick, commitment comedies actually have multiple plotlines. In the case of Bringing Up Baby, Dr. Huxley is concerned about obtaining financing for his museum, but also about searching for the last bone to complete his dinosaur fossil. Commitment comedies also tend to exhibit the clashing of social classes—Dr. Huxley is a highly-educated man who is paired with Susan, a wealthy young woman with no need for a career. The promise of marriage at the end of the film is another characteristic of commitment comedies. In addition to these common themes, Karnick argues that this particular category shares character roles as well. There is a “first partner” (Huxley), an “initial partner” (Miss Swallow), a “second partner” (Susan), a “conscience figure” (Sarah, Nick, Ned), and a “blocking figure” (Mr. Seton). (133).
In the last part of the article, Karnick addresses the reaffirmation comedies, which she argues are essentially continuations of commitment comedies. Thus, like commitment comedies, this particular category also shares common themes, plotlines, and character roles as well.