Showing posts from October, 2012

CFP: postwar American films in Europe conference

Call for Papers

International Conference -
The return of American films to Europe: economics, politics, aesthetics
Film History and Aesthetics Section, University of Lausanne
and Department of Film Studies, University of Haute Bretagne/Rennes 2

During WWII, the free circulation of films - commercial and cultural - from one continent to another and from one country to another was interrupted, as we know, in most nations. The phenomenon had already occurred during the First World War with profound implications for the places that the various national film industries occupied thereafter.

In 1945, the national cinemas of Europe are all on the threshold of major changes, although the situation varies from country to country. Thus it is necessary to distinguish between those who were defeated and occupied by Germany (Czechoslovakia, Poland, Denmark, Norway, Belgium, Netherlands, France, etc.), those who were Germany’s allies (Italy, Hungary, Romania, Croatia, Slovakia, Bulgaria), t…

CFP: 2013 Screen conference


Screen Studies Conference
28-30 June 2013
University of Glasgow

Plenary theme: "Cosmopolitan Screens"

The 23rd International Screen Studies Conference, organised by the journal Screen, will be programmed by Screen editors Tim Bergfelder, Dimitris Eleftheriotis, Alastair Phillips and Jackie Stacey.

Debates about the national, the transnational, the global and the multi-cultural have permeated screen studies for decades. The main theme of this year's Screen conference will consider how such debates might be reframed through a serious engagement with theories of cosmopolitanism. How might discussions about cosmopolitanism, currently animating subjects across the humanities and social sciences, speak to scholarship in film and television studies and vice versa?

Literally suggesting a combination of worldliness (cosmos) and place (city, city-state, citizenship - polis), the concept of cosmopolitanism has inspired new political visions post 9/11 and its afterm…

CFP: Media Cultures of the Early Cold War Era

Personally, I wish they'd give a little more heads up for these calls. Two months in the middle of the semester is not enough time to pull an article together!


The Velvet Light Trap 
Issue #73: Media Cultures of the Early Cold War Era

Few historical periods are as rich for film and media history as the post-war/early Cold War era, which witnessed such epochal shifts as the domestic decline and international expansion of Hollywood, the global rise of art cinema, the diffusion of television, and the emergence of academic film study. Though these events are well-known and well-documented, recent scholarship has urged us to see them in the context of transnational cultural exchanges. Vanessa Schwartz has noted that "although we often speak of ‘global media’ culture we do not have a sufficiently textured sense of how it came to be,” and her It’s So French! shows "just how contingent the story of global media is when approached as a historical problem.” Recent an…

Readers, Ideal and Otherwise

Girish Shambu and Jonathan Rosenbaum each have thoughtful reflections on Room 237, a documentary that reflexively examines film criticism by following five social actors with amateur interpretations on Kubrick's The Shining. I've not yet seen the film, but for now would like to toss out a couple of thoughts, more reactions to their claims (which I'm pretty much sympathetic to) than reactions to a film I've not seen.

First, it sounds like their critique of the film latches on to tricky problems of documentary ethics. Room 237's director could have intervened in the "outrĂ©, freakish or crackpot" discourse of the social actors, either through over narration or through countervailing testimony/expertise. And maybe they should have. However, documentarians seem increasingly keen to avoid this kind of intervention on ethical grounds: to give one example, Resurrect Dead's Jon Foy has been quite explicit in this goal. Perhaps Room 237 is showing the limits of…

CFP: Revisiting Star Studies

Call for Papers

Revisiting Star Studies conference 

12th-14th June 2012
The Research Centre in Film & Digital Media
Newcastle University, UK

Keynote speakers: Dr Stephanie Dennison (University of Leeds), Dr Neepa Majumdar (University of Pittsburgh), Prof Yingjin Zhang (University of California-San Diego). Dr Martin Shingler (University of Sunderland), co-editor of the recently-launched BFI Film Stars series, will also host a panel on this new project.

Since its inception in the pioneering works of Edgar Morin (Les Stars, 1957) and Richard Dyer (Stars, 1979), studies of film stardom have been strongly associated with Hollywood structures. There have also been numerous valuable contributions to our understanding of stardom in different national cinemas, including recent work by colleagues here at Newcastle. However in all these efforts to explore stardom in a national context, not only does Hollywood often remain the ultimate ref…

More on Film Studies Blogging

Chuck Tryon follows up with his own thoughts on the decline of film studies blogging. I suspect he's right to chalk a lot of it up to the novelty factor (or lack thereof). I'm less convinced about its correspondence to the movies themselves. For starters, I don't see a corresponding decline in cinephile blogging. And to the extent that "death of cinema" arguments hold true (and maybe they don't) I can't see any substantial historical shift between five years ago and today.

Cinetrix rounds up Chuck's and my posts in a response that culls them together in a series of "canards" about the death of film, film critics, etc. I'm not entirely sure what in my post put forth a canard, but maybe I should clarify what I mean. First, I make no claim about the state of film studies (which I don't think is in decline) or the state of cinema (complicated issue: experiencing certain types of decline but mostly still alive and well as a medium).