Friday, June 15, 2007

Rudolf Arnheim Dies

Rudolf Arnheim, a psychologist and scholar of art and ideas, has died. He was 102 years old. Arnheim was born in Berlin, and was known to film buffs for his classic study, Film as Art. According to Wikipedia, Arnheim's

preoccupation with film led to the publication in 1932 of his first book entitled Film als Kunst (Film as Art), in which he examined the various ways in which film images are (and should always aspire to be) different from literal encounters with reality. However, soon after this book was released, Adolph Hitler came to power, and because Arnheim was Jewish, the sale of his book was no longer allowed.
The book was published in English translation in 1957, and was widely used in American classrooms during the 1960's and 1970's. For those not familiar with the book, it should be noted that it contains three short passages concerning the 1929 Louise Brooks film, The Diary of a Lost Girl.

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