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Presentation on José Nepomuceno in Phnom Penh

November 17, 2009
Jose Nepomuceno

Jose Nepomuceno

Next Friday, the Swedish film scholar Nadi Tofighian will visit the Department of Media and Communication at the Royal University of Phnom Penh and give a talk on the subject of the dissertation he is currently researching: the Filipino film producer José Nepomuceno,  a seminal figure in the history of Filipino cinema, who was instrumental in starting the movie industry in the Philippines.

In his talk, he will also discuss the Filipino media in the 1920s and 1930s before the Japanese occupation – an interesting opportunity to learn more about the situation of the press, radio and the movies in this country.

An abstract follows below.

The talk will be Friday, Nov 20th, 2009
9:30 – 11:00 am
Department of Media and Communication
Royal University of Phnom Penh
Russian Federation Boulevard
Toul Kork, Phnom Penh

Here is the abstract of his talk:

Cinema capturing the Philippines: Language, journalism and José Nepomuceno

The presentation examines the contribution made by José Nepomuceno to the Philippine quest for independence and the raising of national consciousness. By portraying Filipino views, lives and traditions, Nepomuceno was instrumental in creating an imagined community in a colonial society. He created a national consciousness by writing the history of the national with his camera; films that were viewed by people from all social strata across the Islands. The films of Nepomuceno spread Tagalog language and culture, and gradually made Filipino national culture converge with Tagalog culture.

Nadi Tofighian is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Cinema Studies at Stockholm University. The topic of his dissertation is the economic history of cinema in Southeast Asia, wherein he studies distribution practices, trade patterns, and in what way colonising countries used cinema to spread culture and increase trade. He spent a year in Southeast Asia doing archival research for his dissertation, as well as writing a yet unpublished book on the pioneer Southeast Asian filmmaker, José Nepomuceno.

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