Windows on the world: Memories of European cinema in 1960s Britain

Melvyn Stokes, Matthew Jones, Nidal Hilal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


During the 1960s, European cinema became increasingly available to British audiences. The expansion of university film societies and art-house cinemas meant that domestic and US productions, which made up the vast majority of films screened in this country, were now in competition with the work of directors such as Bergman, Fellini and Truffaut. Using responses from nearly a thousand participants in an investigation of cultural memory and British cinemagoing in the 1960s, this article explores how these encounters with European cinema are now remembered. While audiences tend to characterise these films as innovative, unusual and cerebral, they are also often thought of as obscure and baffling. This article argues that, however the films are now remembered, British cinema audiences sensed that they were having their eyes opened to new perspectives on the world through their exposure to films from other countries.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)78-90
Number of pages13
JournalMemory Studies
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017


  • 1960s
  • Britain
  • European cinema
  • cinema memory
  • cinemagoing
  • ethnohistorical research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology


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