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Hughes, Stephen (2010) 'What is Tamil about Tamil Cinema?' South Asia Popular Culture, 8 (3). pp. 213-229.

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This paper argues that the ‘Tamil-ness’ of Tamil cinema was not based on any fixed linguistic identity, but was constructed as a matter of production practice and critical discourse after the introduction of sound film during the 1930s. Using contemporary sources the paper looks at how the Tamil part of Tamil cinema was constructed through changes in film form, production and music at a time when producers and directors were confronted with new and as yet untested linguistic and geographic parameters for imagining their audiences. The Tamil-ness of Tamil film must also be read in relation to an increasing differentiation within the ongoing linguistic division of Indian cinema, the critical discourses of Tamil revival and the cultural politics of caste and class during the 1930s and 1940s. This paper problematizes the Tamil identity of Tamil cinema as a stable, self-contained, linguistically bounded tradition during the 1930s.

Item Type: Journal Article
SOAS Departments & Centres: Legacy Departments > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Department of Anthropology and Sociology
ISSN: 14746689
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 22 Jun 2011 08:45

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