The film archive that has sought to preserve the filmic world of the twentieth century is a project that is as nearly complicated as modernity itself. While critics and theorists have necessarily looked to cinema as a way to make sense of temporal and spatial shifting taking place in modernity, focusing on how and why archivists and film preservationists have attempted to save cinema sheds new light on how modern people imagined and then created a way to confront, reveal, confine and hold on to the recent past. In other words, this is a study of how modern people apprehended the past and conceptualized and enacted history making, by way of the film archive. It details archivists' and preservationists' perceptions and methodologies for securing artifacts that they deemed culturally and cinematically significant so to understand how they negotiated the present and imagined the future, while laying claim to the past.
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