Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Arts


Film Studies


Dr. Constanza Burucua


This thesis provides a history of the Best Foreign Language Film category at the Oscars between 1926 and 2013. It examines the category through an industrial approach, historicizing the category’s symbiotic relationship with the Hollywood studios and examining how its financial, political and cultural parameters have been affected by changes within Hollywood studio corporate structure and the Hollywood studios’ practice of importing foreign-language films from Europe and around the world. Documenting this practice allows for the category to be structured in three sections: the period of European Art Cinema, the period of European commercial cinema, and the current period, which focuses on commercialized films that can be distributed worldwide. This study will ultimately suggest that the category acts as a prism that can be used to understand the industrial conditions and contexts of various forms of art and niche cinema at a global level.