This introductory chapter discusses how Germaine Dulac played a groundbreaking role in the evolution of the cinema both as art and social practice. Over the course of her film career (1915–42), Dulac directed more than thirty fiction films, many marking new cinematic tendencies, from Impressionist to abstract. A careful study of Dulac's life and work establishes the importance of her voice in the diffusion and legitimization of French film and film culture, as evidenced through her prolific writings and lectures. She also played a prominent role in several cultural organizations such as the Society of Film Authors (SAF), the French Federation of Cine-Clubs (FFCC), the International Council of Women (ICW), the International Educational Cinematographic Institute(IECI), and the League of Nations' International Committee for Intellectual Cooperation (ICIC), among others.
Keywords: Germaine Dulac, French film, film culture, abstract cinema, Society of Film Authors, French Federation of Cine-Clubs, International Council of Women, International Educational Cinematographic Institute, International Committee for Intellectual Cooperation
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