sovay: (Rotwang)
sovay ([personal profile] sovay) wrote 2017-08-02 11:50 am (UTC)

I wonder to what degree the emergence of the idea can be connected to the spread (and increased ease) of audio recording technology?

I've wondered about that, which is one of the reasons I want to know if there are examples earlier than Oliphant or her contemporaries: she should be right at the edge of the phonograph. The metaphor of recording exists prior to that, but not real-time playback, which feels key to the idea of ghosts repeating on the same patch of time. I agree that it accelerates into the twentieth century and takes some really interesting forms—there's something very like it in Powell and Pressburger's A Canterbury Tale (1944), only not ghosts and not horror (it's in the footnotes of the post, I don't have them linked individually). But I haven't been able to pin down when it started. By now it's just one of the formats of ghost the field takes for granted.

[edit] I would also not be surprised if this trope were much older than I think, if only because so many things turn out to be.

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