UPDATE: [Film] CFP: "Fantastisch" - German Science-Fiction Films Area (Film & History, Chicago 10/30/08-11/2/08)

full name / name of organization: 
Massimo Perinelli
contact email: 

Call for Papers
2008 Film & History Conference
“Film & Science: Fictions, Documentaries, and Beyond”
October 30-November 2, 2008
Chicago, Illinois
First-Round Deadline: November 30, 2007

AREA: “Fantastisch” â€" German Science-Fiction Films

This Area looks at German history and its distinct epochs (or even
trans-epochal aspects) via the genre of the Science Fiction film. Ranging
from the ‘paper-mâché’-ish beginnings of early German cinema to the digital
high-gloss landscapes of today’s virtual worlds, the Science Fiction film
has responded to historical currents by gauging (often unconsciously) the
moods, anxieties, hopes, and fantasies of a society. How has German culture
reinvented itself through fantasy films? How has German SF, as a genre,
reacted to the politics, the technology, popular culture and of its day?

The paper topics could, for instance, focus on the following themes:
- the dreams and/or nightmares resulting from the incipient industrial
modernism in early silent pictures
- the articulated presentiments and paranoia emerging against the
background of totalitarianism during the time of the Weimar Republic and
the early 1930s (e.g., the German exile movie)
- the desire for purity and the staging of fascist fantasies of
‘Weltherrschaft’ during the National Socialism movement
- the attempt to draft new and better worlds during immediate post-war
periods in order to overcome the culpable past and to recreate the society
- utopian sites in the course of revolts towards the end of the 1960s and
in the new social movements as from the 1970s
- dystopian projections of the future during the Cold War and societal
upheavals during the 1980s
- (post-)apocalyptic scenarios of doom after the collapse of the Eastern
Bloc, especially after 9/11

Further analytical topics are possible:
- the sci-fi movie of the GDR
- transnational effects and their cinematic adaptation
- other historical events or historiographies

Both trans-epochal aspects and intra-epochal aspects intrinsic to the genre
of German Science Fiction films are likewise possible:
- utopias/dystopias of gender
- animals/monsters
- science and mechanization
- the writing of history projected into the future
- bodies and automatons
- religious or apocalyptic projections in the course of the 20th century
- historical analysis of the reception of foreign/US-American Science
Fiction films

Although this Area identifies cinematic productions, television programs
and serials, as well as the adaptation of film to and from television, are
likewise most welcome.

Please send your 200-word proposal by November 30, 2007 to

Massimo Perinelli, Chair of the German Science-Fiction Area
Anglo-Amerikanische Abteilung
Historisches Seminar
University of Cologne
D-50923 Cologne

+49 (0)221-470 2412
Email to: perinelli_at_gmx.ch

Panel proposals for up to four presenters are also welcome, but each
presenter must submit his or her own paper proposal. Deadline for
first-round proposals: November 1, 2007.

This area, comprising multiple panels, is a part of the 2008 biennial Film
& History Conference, sponsored by The Center for the Study of Film and
History. Wheeler Winston Dixon, James Ryan Professor of Film Studies at
University of Nebraska, Lincoln, and author of Visions of the Apocalypse
and Disaster and Memory, will be a Featured Speaker. For updates and
registration information about the upcoming meeting, see the Film & History
website http://www.filmandhistory.org.

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Received on Fri Oct 12 2007 - 05:41:05 EDT