Off the Shelf: Deborah Parker

Deborah Parker, chair of the Department of Spanish, Italian and Portuguese in the College of Arts & Sciences, and Mark Parker, English professor at James Madison University, "The DVD and the Study of Film: The Attainable Text." Palgrave MacMillan 2011.

June 22, 2011 — "The DVD and the Study of Film: The Attainable Text" examines supplementary features created for DVD releases of films as a form of cinematic appreciation and criticism. Drawing on interviews with DVD producers, directors and scholars, the Parkers "explore how the format combines the enthusiasm of a fan, cinematic nostalgia and scholarly insight," according to publisher Palgrave MacMillan.

In a review, Curtis Wong, a principal researcher at Microsoft, called it "a fascinating account of the evolution of home video from the laserdisc to the DVD with its multiple-track audio commentaries and rich supplementary content enabling the broader public to engage more deeply in cinema studies."

Timothy Corrigan, professor of English, cinema studies and history of art at the University of Pennsylvania, wrote, "I know of no other study of the DVD 'revolution' that is as detailed and suggestive as this stylish, lucid investigation."

Deborah Parker, a professor of Italian in U.Va.'s College of Arts & Sciences, has also written "Commentary and Ideology: Dante in the Renaissance" (Duke, 1993), "Bronzino: Renaissance Painter as Poet" (Cambridge, 2000) and "Michelangelo and the Art of Letter Writing" (Cambridge, 2010). She serves as the editor for The World of Dante, a multimedia archive that focuses on "The Divine Comedy."

— By Julia Wang

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