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Paul Moore

Moore, Paul


Associate Professor


B.Sc. (Mount Allison), M.Sc. (Queen's), Ph.D (York, Sociology)




416-979-5000 ext 2604

Email Address:



Research Interests:

Media History; Urban Studies; Mass Society and the Mass Market; Newspapers; Film Exhibition

Prof. Moore studies the history of the mass market and urban modernity in North America. Overall, his work argues that amusement and leisure help constitute modern publics by providing spaces, rhetorics, and logics for collective gathering. His recent research, Circuits of Cinema, tells the history of film and media distribution from the earliest days of travelling shows to global blockbusters. His previous project was a social history of the first decade of movie-going in Toronto and the Midwest USA, tracing how the novelty of film became a mass practice through showmanship, regulation, and promotion. Collaborating with Prof. Sandra Gabriele, a forthcoming book examines the development of the weekend newspaper in the 1890s as a cultural technology, animating modernity, central to the institutionalization of mass society.

Teaching Interests:

Media History; Communications Theory; Urban Studies; Methodologies

Professor Moore aims to incorporate historical overviews of modernity and communications into courses of all stripes, but his background in math and stats has also led to teaching quantitative methods. Emphasizing service learning and applied practice, for coordinating in teaching Sociology’s methodology curriculum, he and Prof. Noack received the Provost’s Experiential Teaching Award in 2010.

From 2012 to 2017, Moore served as Ryerson Director of the Joint with York Graduate Program in Communication and Culture.

Current Courses:

SOC 482: Advanced Approaches to Media Analysis

SOC 931: Waste and Consumerism

SOC 483: Advanced Research and Statistics

SOC 479: Communities and Social Networks

SOC 490: Sociological Practice (capstone)

CC9900: Doctoral Research Methodologies

CC 8820: Theoretical Approaches to Media and Culture

Professional Affiliations:

Prof. Moore was President of the Film Studies Association of Canada, moderator of the Toronto Film Seminar, and recently hosted the 7th International conference of the HOMER Network (History of Movie Exhibition and Reception). He is working with the Canadian Picture Pioneers on their archive project and has been working to preserve and digitize Canadian film trade journals and documents. Moore has compiled histories of thousands of theatre and cinema buildings across Canada, and consults with local groups to help recover their regional cinema histories.

Selected Publications & Presentations:


With Sandra Gabriele. The Sunday Paper, 1888-1922. University of Illinois Press, History of Communication Series. 


Ephemera as Medium: The Afterlife of Lost Films,” The Moving Image 15(2): 135-139.


Space, Place and Case: Surveying the Grounds of Cinema History,” Early Popular Visual Culture 13(4): 336-343.


“Wide-Open Screens: Early Cinema in Saskatchewan,” in Rogers and Ramsay, eds., Overlooking Saskatchewan: Minding the Gap. University of Regina Press, 45-61.


Co-Editor and Introduction Co-Author with Braun, Keil, King & Pelletier. Beyond the Screen: Institutions, Networks and Publics of Early Cinema. (Essays from Domitor 2010 in Toronto) Eastleigh, UK: John Libbey Publishing.


“The Flow of Amusement: The First Year of Cinema in the Red River Valley,” in Conway and Pasch, eds., Beyond the Border: Tensions Across the 49th Parallel. McGill-Queen’s University Press, 71-89.


Mapping Early Cinema’s Mass Circulation: Film Debuts Coast-to-Coast in Canada in 1896 and 1897.” Canadian Journal of Film Studies 21(1): 58-80.


“Advance Newspaper Publicity for the Vitascope and Cinema’s Mass Reading Public,” pp. 381-397 in Gaudreault, Dulac & Hidalgo, eds., A Companion to Early Cinema Malden: Blackwell.


“The Social Biograph: Newspapers as archives of the regional mass market for movies,” pp. 263-279 in Maltby, Meers & Biltereyst, eds., Explorations in New Cinema History. Malden: Blackwell.


Now Playing: Early Movie-going and the Regulation of Fun (Toronto 1906-1918). Albany: SUNY Press. (Winner of the 2009 Gertrude J. Robinson Prize of the Canadian Communications Association).