British Film Cultures panel CFP, SCMS Atlanta 2016 -- abstracts due 10 August 2015

full name / name of organization: 
Society for Cinema and Media Studies, Atlanta, GA, 30 Mar - 3 Apr 2016
contact email: 

This panel will examine the institutional, industrial, social, discursive, and historical dimensions of British film cultures and the different taste-making sites wherein these cultures are produced. During the last decade, a number of scholars within British cinema studies have begun to re-evaluate not only certain films, genres, and neglected decades (following the larger revisionist turn beginning in the 1990s) but also the film cultures in which those films were produced, distributed, and exhibited. And yet, the critical conversation continues to tend to deploy "British film culture" as an under-defined term of assumed transparency and, often, homogeneity. An approach to British cinema studies that takes into account the historically and contextually specific influence of particular British film cultures can allow us to think through the ways in which film cultures can add significant layers of meaning to films, as well as the ways in which film cultures can respond to and participate in both short-lived and long-standing discourses about and within cinemas and film industries.

Consideration will be given to papers on any particular strand of British film culture or historical period. Transnational approaches that examine the influence of films, film industries, and film cultures outside the UK are also welcome.


Possible topics include but are not limited to:


- Histories of particular strands of British film culture (mainstream, cult, etc.)

- Accounts of specific issues or debates within British film culture (quality, cineliteracy, etc.)

- Examinations of particular sites where film culture has been instantiated (particular publications or festivals, work by critics who come to speak "for" or "as" British film culture, etc.)

- Differences and/or continuities between British film cultures before and after certain major events within the culture or film industry (e.g., industrial booms and collapses, pre- and post-WWII, the rebirth of Sight & Sound in 1991, etc.)

- Examinations of attitudes within particular strands of British film culture toward specific genres (heritage, horror, comedy, etc.)

- Accounts of the links between particular strands of British film culture, taste distinctions, and identity (mainstream, cult, etc.)

- Explorations of the relationship between British film cultures and technological changes within the film industry and/or to the methods whereby viewers access films (streaming services, user-upload websites, pirating websites, VOD, etc.)

- Transnational approaches to British film cultures (the influence of non-British films, the influence of French film criticism, the importance of non-British festivals and/or awards, etc.)

- Readings of particular films or directors in terms of their participation in, response to, or influence on discourses within British film cultures



Interested parties should send a 250-300 word abstract (no more than 2,500 characters), a bibliography of 3-5 sources, and a brief author bio (approximately 50 words) to Lindsey Decker at lfrank@syr.edu no later than August 10, 2015. Notifications will be sent out by August 14. Inquiries are welcome.

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