Alice in the archives

Katherine Groo

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


The viral version of Alice in Wonderland is a curious artifact, an index of multiple film-historical events and documents: the original, the unrestored copy, the "real" restoration archived at the British Film Institute (BFI), and the self-same digital copy that the archive circulated to promote the archive, its restoration work, and Disney's own adventure in wonderland. The genealogy of Alice in Wonderland moves from a nineteenth-century novel to early and contemporary cinemas to new media. Foucault's conception of the archive as determinative in the construction of historical knowledge crucially intersects with Jacques Derrida's multivalent mal d'archive. In The Language of New Media, Manovich nominates the "database" as the archival formation of the digital era. The digital archive of early cinema offers an important counterpoint to the phenomenological-materialist spectrum and the essentializing tendencies of contemporary archival thought. The Scene Machine mediates one's interaction through language, and makes mode of mediation visible.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNew Silent Cinema
EditorsKatherine Groo, Paul Flaig
Number of pages21
ISBN (Electronic)9781315819297
ISBN (Print)9780415735278, 9780415735254
Publication statusPublished - 16 Sept 2015


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