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Films About the Past



  • Read the Process of Making a Historical Film, based on the case study of A Midwife's Tale. Writer/producer Laurie Kahn-Leavitt discusses the steps involved in the making of the film -- from conception to distribution -- and what choices the writer, the director, the production designer, the leading actress, the editor, the producer, and the composer made, why they made these choices, and what effect these choices have on the viewers' interpretation of the past.

More information about the film A Midwife's Tale can be found on the PBS companion site for the film: Two of the people who worked on DoHistory, Judith Moyer and Laurie Kahn-Leavitt, created materials available at that site. Look at the suggested questions to think about when analyzing films about the past. Some of these questions are similar to the questions you would ask of written works on history, but many are different. You will also find suggestions of historical films to watch.

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