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Chris Grosvenor

Chris Grosvenor

After studying English Literature and Film Studies as an undergraduate at the University of Exeter (2010-13), followed by an MA in Film Studies at the University of Warwick (2013-14), Chris completed his doctoral research at the University of Exeter in 2018.

His thesis - 'Cinema on the Front Line' - examined the role of the cinema as it intersected with the lives of those who served for Britain during the First World War, shining a light on a largely unacknowledged history within the discipline of film studies and military history. Chris is particularly interested in the history of cinematic exhibition for military audiences on the front lines themselves, often in very close proximity to the dangers of the battlefield.

More broadly, his research interests include silent cinema, British film history, exhibition studies and the work of silent comedian Charlie Chaplin. Chris has published his work in a number of academic journals including Early Popular Visual Culture, Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television and Film History and his research has also been featured on BBC Radio Devon, The Sun, The Daily Mirror and ITV News. Chris is currently developing plans for his next major research project (provisionally) titled ‘Behind the scenes: meta-movies and the representation of film production, exhibition and reception in silent cinema’.

As a PT (Postgraduate Teacher) during the 2016/17 and 2017/18 academic years, Chris has taught seminar groups for the Level 2 module 'Adaptation: Text, Image, Culture'. Chris has also taught as a guest tutor on EAF3513: British Screens, and as a tutor for the University of Exeter's Widening Participation programme. Since 2018 he has been an Occasional Teacher within the department and will be teaching on 'Shots in the Dark' and 'Adaptation' during the 2019/20 academic year.

Beyond his academic work Chris is a keen film fan and critic, having written for numerous publications. He been involved with the establishment and organisation of an award winning film society where he resided on the film selection committee, produced promotional material, including literature and short films, and introduced screenings for over 150 people. Chris has also volunteered at the Bill Douglas Cinema Museum and has acted as the student representative on the museum's board.



EAF2502: Shots in the Dark: American Film in Profile (University of Exeter) - Seminar Tutor (2018/19; 2019/20)

EAF2510: Adaptation: Text, Image, Culture (University of Exeter) - Seminar Tutor (2016/17, 2017/18, 2018/19; 2019/20).

EAF3513: British Screens (University of Exeter) - Guest tutor, Week 2 (2016)

Widening Participation - WP Film Studies Session Tutor for Exeter Progression Programme, (Various sessions: 2017-2019).

Journal Articles

‘Cinemas Behind Barbed Wire: British Prisoners of War and POW Camp Cinemas, 1914-1918’, Early Popular Visual Culture (2019).

‘Dr Kinema’: The Cinema, the Trade and the Rehabilitation of Wounded and Disabled Soldiers during the First World War’, Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television (2019).

‘"He Sees Now What He Looked Like": Soldier Spectators, Topical Films and the Problem of onscreen representation during WWI', Film History: An International Journal, Vol. 30, No. 4 (2018) pp. 84-106.

'Discontinuity and the Tramp: Understanding Discontinuity as a Constitutive Element of Charles Chaplin’s ‘Charlie’ Identity', Exclamat!on: An Interdisciplinary Journal, Vol. 1, No. 2 (2018), pp. 189-207 

'"At the Front" postcard series c.1916, the Bill Douglas Cinema Museum collection', Early Popular Visual Culture, Vol. 15, No. 4 (2017), pp.500-507.

Book Reviews

‘Book Review: Cinema’s Military Industrial Complex’, Media, War & Conflict.

‘A Place of Darkness: The Rhetoric of Horror in Early American Cinema’, Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television.

‘Review: Comic Venus: Women and Comedy in American Silent Film’, Early Popular Visual Culture.

Conference Papers

'The Dream that Kickstarts: Kickstarting Silent Film Restorations and Participatory Fan Culture', New Approaches to Silent Film Historiography, University of Leeds, September 2018.

‘"Ageless, Invincible and Unchanging": Sherlock Holmes, Transtextuality and Adaptation as Political Discourse', PGR College of Humanities - 'Crossing Boundaries' Conference, University of Exeter, 23rd April 2018.

'"Wake Up!": British Cinema, the Outbreak of War, and the Voluntary Recruiting Movement, 1914-1916', British Silent Film Festival Symposium, King's College London, 20th April 2018.

'The Forgotten Audience of First World War Cinema: The Evidence of Cinema Spectatorship in Official Military Documentation', Researching Past Cinema Audiences: Archives, Memories and Methods, Aberystwyth University, March 2018.

‘“He Sees Now What He Looked Like”: Soldier Spectators, Topical Films and the Problem of On-Screen Representation during WWI’, 27th Screen Studies Conference, June 2017.

‘Soldiers in the Archive: Uncovering the History of Military Cinema Audiences during WWI through the Bill Douglas Cinema Museum’, Invited Speaker, 20th Anniversary Lecture Event, The Bill Douglas Cinema Museum, March 2017.

‘Reels, Recovery and Rehabilitation: Examining the use of cinema entertainment for wounded disabled soldiers in WWI’ – PGR Conference of the Humanities, University of Exeter, April 2016

‘Cinema on the Front Line: Military Cinema Exhibition during the First World War’ – Moving Pictures and Photoplays: New Perspectives in Silent Cinema, University of York, June 2015.  

‘Discontinuity and the Tramp: Chaplin’s ‘Charlie’ Persona’ – Film and Media 2014 Conference, University of London, June 2014.


'Cinema on the Front Line: A History of Military Cinema Exhibition and Soldier Spectatorship during the First World War', University of Exeter, Doctorate awarded December 2018.

PhD Supervisors: Dr. Joe Kember and Dr. Debra Ramsay.


Student Representative for the Bill Douglas Cinema Museum Board (2016 - )

Public Outreach

Daily Mail – ‘New research shines light on cinema-going habits of British prisoners of war’ – also reported by The Sun Newspaper and others (15 August 2019).

ITV News - 'Military Cinemas provide respite for soldiers on the front line', 06/11/2018

Radio Interview with BBC Devon regarding the centenary of the propaganda film The Battle of the Somme (1916), 2/7/2016

The Bill Douglas Cinema Museum Podcast Series - Episode One.

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