Film as History and History as Myperreality

From Griffith to Grindhouse - Representations of Antiquity in Film - Kevin M. McGeough

Kevin M. McGeough [+-]
University of Lethbridge
Kevin M. McGeough is professor of archaeology in the Department of Geography at the University of Lethbridge. Having excavated in Israel, Turkey, Jordan, and Egypt, he is the editor of The Annual of the American Schools of Oriental Research. He is currently researching the reception of Near Eastern Archaeology in a variety of media and has recently published a three-volume book on archaeological reception in the Victorian era, The Ancient Near East in the Nineteenth Century (2015).


The introduction offers a brief survey of thinking on how movies can work as attempts at telling history, focussing on the major debates that have emerged since the 1990s. It introduces debates surrounding the archaeological authenticity of these films (and the rhetorical strategy surrounding “realism”). Another major theme brought up here is how the ancient world is used as a film setting for making arguments about the present. The last two sections address the topics of material culture in film (of particular interest to archaeologists and anthropologists) and the appeal of hyperreal representations to popular audiences.

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McGeough, Kevin. Film as History and History as Myperreality. From Griffith to Grindhouse - Representations of Antiquity in Film. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. Oct 2022. ISBN 9781781799819. Date accessed: 23 Sep 2020 doi: 10.1558/equinox.39760. Oct 2022

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