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Preventing blindness and saving sight.

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Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0)
You can use this work for any purpose, as long as it is not primarily intended for or directed to commercial advantage or monetary compensation. You should also provide attribution to the original work, source and licence.
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Credit: Preventing blindness and saving sight. Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0)

About this work


Aimed to provide information on the importance of eye care, this film provides a broad survey of eye care and medical conditions affecting the eye, illustrated by human examples. Part of the film is devoted to trachoma and glaucoma.


US : Eastman Teaching Films Inc., 1933.

Physical description

1 encoded moving image (19.30 min.) : silent, black and white



Copyright note

Eastman Teaching Films, 1933

Terms of use

Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial 2.0 UK: England & Wales


Segment 1 The advantages of caring for your eyes are outlined, as well as what could happen if your eyes are subjected to infection. The intertitle "Good eyesight: the birthright of every child", is illustrated by shots of children playing in a sandpit and playing on a horse and cart. Intertitle "Good eyesight: the joy of the game", is illustrated by young men playing Americal football. Intertitle "Good eyesight: a comfort in the evening of life", is illustrated by an elderly couple sitting in the living room in the evening, reading and sewing. The intertitles describe blindness as a tragedy and we are shown a toddler with poor eyesight, children reading braille in a blind school and a blind cobbler at work. Blindness, according to the film, is a tragedy because it is preventable, especially if we understand how fragile the eye is, particularly the eye of a child. The film explores the structure of the eye which is described as being similar to a camera. Drawings of a camera and an eye are placed side by side and contrasted. Further diagrams describe the difference between long- and short-sightedness. Time start: 00:00:00:00 Time end:00:04:27:23 Length: 00:04:27:23
Segment 2 The effects of syphilis on the eye are shown, eye care for infants and children is outlined, and the use of good lighting conditions in order to prevent eye strain is recommended. A patient with eye trauma caused by syphilis is shown and of a boy who has congenital syphilis. Expectant mothers are urged to seek medical treatment and a young woman is shown visiting an ante-natal clinic and speaking to a doctor. She is given a leaflet entitled 'The Expectant Mother in the House of Health.' A newborn baby is shown being given eye drops - the film recommends that all babies are given drops immediately after birth. Another baby with a severe eye infection has a swab taken from it. Microscopic shots of the bacteria causing the infection are shown - an intertitle tells us that this kind of infection can lead to blindness. We see a boy with crossed eyes and are reminded that early attention may straighten crossed eyes and prevent loss of vision. Sties are discussed and a young boy is seen visiting his GP for a full examination in order to discover the cause of his sties. The GP recommends more sleep and fresh air. Next we are shown how children 'abuse' their eyes, illustrated by a boy reading a comic in poor light. Correct positions for reading, sewing and classroom settings are shown. Time start: 00:04:27:23 Time end: 00:10:53:00 Length: 00:06:25:06
Segment 3 'Pink eye' or conjunctivitis is shown, and shows the treatment and care of a young girl with the condition. It also looks at the hazards to eyes that can be found in the work place. A young girl is shown at the GP surgery with her mother. The doctor and a nurse treat her eyes with drops. Industrial eye hazards are covered next. We see a man working in a factory furnace with molten sparks flying around him, marble cutters working on a war memorial and a man working at an emery wheel without goggles. He gets something in his eye and has to visit a clinic. The segment ends with shots of a very busy waiting room at an eye clinic and shots of patients having their eyes tested. Time start: 00:10:53:00 Time end: 00:14:39:08 Length: 00:03:46:08
Segment 4 Trachoma, at the time of the film a widespread disease in isolated areas of America, is shown. Intertitles state: "In America trachoma occurs chiefly among native Indians and isolated white folk". A line of white people in a rural place, all with trachoma, are shown. We then see close-up shots of a granulated eyelid, the early stage of trachoma, followed by a shot of a man with advanced trachoma. A public health nurse is shown driving a car down a bumpy track to visit a man with a trachoma. He lives in extreme poverty in a wooden shack with a large family. The nurse examines the eyelids of all the children. The family is then re-housed and is shown in a proper wooden house with the children playing outside and picking flowers. Next we see close-up shots of eye conditions that affect the elderly such as glaucoma and cataract, both of which are shown in close-up in an elderly person. The viewer is encouraged to get visual disturbances checked out immediately. Good eyesight is described as being an asset to learning and earning a living - children are shown at school, men in a studio working on [technical?] drawings, printing and making a silver tray. Women work on a switchboard and an engraver works on a jug. Good eyesight is also promoted as a gateway to an appreciation of the beauty of the world - shots of beautiful landscapes are shown. Time start: 00:14:39:08 Time end: 00:19:28:11 Length: 00:04:49:03

Creator/production credits

Produced by Eastman Teaching Films in cooperation with the National Society for the Prevention of Blindness, Rufus and Winifred Mather and the American University of Cairo, Egypt


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