Curated by Laurel Bradley and Carol Donelan
With contributions from students who are enrolled in "The Melodramatic Imagination," Department of Cinema and Media Studies
Melodrama, a popular storytelling mode characterized by extravagant emotion and thrills, with roots in nineteenth-century literary and theatrical genres, is often dismissed as old-fashioned and unworthy of critical attention.
Modernizing Melodrama investigates how melodrama modernizes itself in contemporary popular visual media and art. Using specific films and themes in cinema history as frames — ranging from early sensational film serials to studio-era Hollywood tear-jerkers and recent blockbuster action films — this exhibition will present images and objects that embody the ongoing power and persistence of melodrama as an expressive practice.