John Grierson

related topics
{film, series, show}
{theory, work, human}
{government, party, election}
{work, book, publish}
{black, white, people}
{son, year, death}
{company, market, business}
{service, military, aircraft}
{water, park, boat}
{war, force, army}
{school, student, university}

John Grierson (26 April 1898 – 19 February 1972) was a pioneering Scottish documentary maker, often considered the father of British and Canadian documentary film. In 1926, Grierson coined the term "documentary" to describe a non-fiction film.[1]


Early life

Grierson was born in Deanston, near Doune, Scotland. His father was a schoolmaster, his mother a suffragette and ardent Labour Party activist. From an early age, both parents steeped their son in liberal politics, humanistic ideals, and Calvinist moral and religious philosophies, particularly the notion that education was essential to individual freedom and that hard and meaningful work was the way to prove oneself worthy in the sight of God.

After service on minesweepers in the Royal Navy during World War I, Grierson entered the University of Glasgow, where he spent a good part of his academic career enmeshed in impassioned political discussion and leftist political activism.

In 1924, after graduating from the university in English and Moral Philosophy, he received a Rockefeller Research Fellowship to study in the United States at the University of Chicago, and later at Columbia and the University of Wisconsin–Madison. His research focus was the psychology of propaganda--the impact of the press, film, and other mass media on forming public opinion. Grierson was particularly interested in the popular appeal and influence of the "yellow" (tabloid) press, and the influence and role of these journals on the education of new American citizens from abroad.

Full article ▸

related documents
Theatre technique
Italian neorealism
Constantin Stanislavski
Formalist film theory
From Hell
Bill Viola
The End of Eternity
Dragonriders of Pern
Kim Stanley Robinson
New Wave (science fiction)
Eugène Ionesco
Theatre director
Space opera
Robinson Crusoe
Picaresque novel
Kingsley Amis
R.U.R. (Rossum's Universal Robots)
Alastair Reynolds
Answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything
Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
Miha Remec
Known Space
Riders of the Purple Wage
John Forbes Nash, Jr.
Flannery O'Connor