How Man Made Day (1960)


“How Man Made Day” explains how man invented “artificial daylight”. It presents the progress of man’s use of light from bonfires to candles to gas lamps and finally to light bulbs and fluorescent lamps. The film starts with a scenic view of sunset and proceeds to show a man turning the lights on of his house one by one, giving emphasis to the importance of being able to see your surroundings, even at night. The film shows primitive people using fire to light their caves as well as to protect themselves against wild beasts and a medieval setting in which men invented the candle and the wick. The most important breakthrough presented is Thomas Edison’s invention of the electric light bulb. The film also illustrates how bulbs function and how light is controlled. The light bulb and the fluorescent light are seen as ingenious inventions as these do not use heat to provide light. With these inventions, streets can be light at night, extending daytime and thus extending the time people can interact with each other.

Produced for the Atlanta Public School system by Education Advisor Illa Podendorf, The Laboratory School, University of Chicago.