Contemporary Horror Within and Beyond the Nation, NeMLA 2019

deadline for submissions: 
September 30, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
Jack Dudley, Mount St. Mary's University
contact email: 

Accepted Roundtable for NeMLA 50, March 21 -24, 2019, Washington, DC.

As Sophia Siddique and Raphael Raphael write in Transnational Horror Cinema: Bodies of Excess and the Global Grotesque (2016), “From its origins, what would eventually come to be called ‘the horror genre’ has been deeply transnational both in contexts of production and reception.” In “The American Horror Film? Globalization and Transnational U.S.-Asian Genres” (2013), Christina Klein observes that this transnational quality has particularly been evident most recently, as cinema as a whole continues to become increasingly transnational. For Klein, genre films such as horror lend themselves to the transnational because of their indebtedness to convention or tropes, which can be culturally portable or which, in her words, “can be combined by local filmmakers in fresh ways to carry locally specific meanings.” This accepted roundtable invites participants to interrogate the relationship between contemporary horror—understood as roughly post-1960—and the critical categories of the nation, the global, and the transnational. How do the particular conventions, tropes, and forms most associated with horror facilitate and/or complicate its relationship to the nation? Are the conventions, tropes, and forms of particular national traditions truly exportable and what are the limits of their cultural adaptability? Have recent examples of contemporary horror resisted the transnational and instead laid claim to specifically national visions of horror? By exploring these questions, this roundtable seeks not only to examine how the category of the nation and the transnational have shaped contemporary horror, but how what is still often denigrated as a marginal genre, horror itself, can help us continue to theorize the nation and the transnational as well. Participants are welcome to focus on any medium.

Please submit abstracts through the NeMLA portal, which can be accessed here:

Abstracts are due to the NeMLA portal by Sept. 30, 2018.

Please email with any questions.