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Declarations of Independence


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Table of Contents

Chapter 1: 'Genesis: Modern American Independent Cinema and its Position within an Industry of Mass Production' - Page 9 - John Berra Chapter 2: 'Ancestry of Independence: Easy Rider and the Declaration of a New American Cinema' - Page 29 - John Berra Chapter 3: 'The Art of the Possible: Hollywood Feature Film Production since 1970' - Page 47 - John Berra Chapter 4: 'Oppositional Fantasies: The Economic Structure of American Independent Cinema and its Essential Lineaments' - Page 71 - John Berra Chapter 5: 'Loyalty to the Rhetoric: Four American Film-makers and their Commitment to an Autonomous Mode of Cultural Production' - Page 93 - John Berra Chapter 6: 'Graduating Class: American Independent Cinema as Finishing School' - Page 109 - John Berra Chapter 7: 'A Cultural Comparison: British Independent Cinema and its Relation to its American Counterpart' - Page 129 - John Berra Chapter 8: 'Selective Exhibition: The Sundance Film Festival and its Significance to the Independent Sector' - Page 143 - John Berra Chapter 9: 'The Business of Art: Miramax Films and the Cultivation of the Niche Market' - Page 161 - John Berra Chapter 10: 'The Reception of an Alternative Americana: Audiences and American Independent Cinema' - Page 179 - John Berra

About the Author

John Berra has a PhD in Media from Sheffield University.


"A triumph for an informed, independent author unafraid to un-package the trade in cultural construction that simultaneously provides a socio-political reference through which critics and audience can attach certain films to popular movements and ideas." - Daniel Packer, Transition, Tradition "In this timely study, John Berra asks us to reconsider what we mean by 'independent' cinema in America. He demonstrates the clear gap between popular notions of independence and the commercial realities of movie-making today. He then proceeds to ask vital questions about the whole status of creative autonomy within the contemporary culture industry. In this way, Declarations of Independence has pertinent echoes within the creative sector as a whole." - Dr Richard Howells, Director, Centre for Cultural, Media and Creative Industries Research, King's College London "There has long been a gap in the film literature marked American Independent Cinema. John Berra's handsome and generous new study fills it to repletion. Prodigiously well-informed, economically literate, lengthy in its reach (he covers the past four decades with a useful detour among the British as well) and infectiously enthusiastic in excellent prose, he has made an addition to the best literature of film without ever lapsing into the jargon of Theory." - Professor Fred Inglis, Emeritus Professor of Cultural Studies, University of Sheffield "[Berra's] conclusion is well made - it's almost impossible for the indie film to establish economic independence from the mainstream, but we can still celebrate the cultural significance of its "independent spirit" - Douglas Allen, UC magazine

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