CFP: Global art cinema

Here's an anthology grad-school colleagues of mine (including the coorganizer of my SCMS panel) are putting together. Looks like a great project.

CFP: Global art cinema: new theories and histories

We invite submissions for an edited collection on global art cinema. While ‘art cinema’ has been a canonical term in the history of postwar cinemas in Europe and beyond – often determining the distribution and reception of African, Asian and Latin American cinemas who might reject the label – theoretical engagement with the concept has lagged behind its global transformations. This collection aims to move on from foundational discussions of art cinema in terms of genre or authorship, and to re-assess the field in light of contemporary debates.

The editors are Rosalind Galt (University of Iowa) and Karl Schoonover (Michigan State University).

In revisiting the category of art cinema, this anthology seeks to explore the historical relationships among national cinemas. Since art cinema has always simultaneously invoked industrial, generic, and aesthetic categories, a current reckoning of the field exposes otherwise unseen geopolitical faultlines of postwar world cinema. While we regard Europe as important in the history of art cinema, we want to move beyond familiar histories and resist well-trodden accounts of aesthetic influence to look anew at the international development and circulation of cinematic forms. We understand art cinema as having produced new audiences and new discursive conceptions of cinema, because as a term it has always united films of various national origins into a single viewing practice. Despite its more conservative manifestations, art cinema retains at its core a comparitivist and perhaps internationalist impulse, allowing a move away from limitations of language- or nation-based epistemologies.

We also understand art cinema historically, as inextricably linked to experiences such as World War II, decolonization and economic modernization. Such questions are often of both national and international significance, and we aim to explore both the specificities and convergences in these historical influences. Thus, art cinema becomes a flexible and highly contested terrain, under constant pressure from the regional and the transnational, as well as from the popular and the avant-garde. We hope that this collection might begin to imagine new shapes and boundaries for art cinema, rejecting the commercial and aesthetic limitations of conventional definitions. By soliciting contributions about films from a range of geopolitical locations, we aim to think comparatively on topics often addressed only locally, and to uncover intersections in the emergence, reception and significance of postwar world cinema.

Possible topics include, but are not limited to:
  • Theorizing generic distinction and the canons of art cinema
  • The ‘art’ in art cinema: self-referential visuality, art historical resonances, pictorialism
  • Art cinema’s geography, including rubrics of globalization, cosmopolitanism, or internationalism.
  • Art cinema’s historicity, its relationship to and representation of history, e.g. modernity/postmodernity, postcoloniality, trauma and memory.
  • Art cinema transits: relations among regional, transnational and co-produced films.
  • Art cinema stardom (Bardot, Mastroianni, Moreau, Schygulla, Leung, etc.)
  • The appropriation of art film devices by mainstream cinema.
  • Art cinema as industrial category.
  • Institutions of art cinema exhibition: cin├ęclubs, film festivals, etc.
  • Art cinema audiences: cin├ęphiles, film buffs, artists, critics, etc.
  • Categorical crossovers, e.g., instances of art cinema in queer cinema, “heritage” films, anime, exploitation genres, and documentary.
Please send abstracts (300-500 words) and a vita or short bio to by December 1st.


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