Female Horror Filmmakers
SCMS 2018 Panel CFP : Female Horror Filmmakers
“Softness? Have you seen my movie? When you make horror, it’s the expression of a form of violence that you feel inside of you – and it’s important we recognize that women feel violence and anger as well.” - Julia Ducournau, director of Raw
Horror films have always has been populated by women, who can be seen to be at once both objectified and empowered. Despite the complex gender representations inherent in the genre, women have never shied away from horror – be it as spectators or filmmakers. In particular, the last few years have seen an unprecedented surge of horror films written and directed by women. Films like Jennifer Kent’s The Babadook (2014), Ana Lily Amirpour’s A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night (2014), Karyn Kusama’s The Invitation (2015), and Julia Ducournau’s Raw (2016) are just some examples of the ways women are elevating the genre with stories that unsettle audiences in new and unexpected ways.
This panel investigates why women filmmakers have been drawn to the horror genre and the role they play in how we view and experience horror on screen. Do women have a unique understanding of fear, violence, and body awareness that allow them to challenge and deconstruct dominant horror narratives? Are there any commonalities in themes women explore within the horror genre? How are women using the horror genre and horror tropes to subvert normative discourses on gender, race, dis/ability, and sexuality? Do women bring original aesthetics to creatively convey these stories? We ask, what makes women so good at horror?
Topics can include but are not limited to:
- Overlooked or emerging female voices within the genre
- How are women challenging narrative or aesthetic conventions of horror cinema?
- How are women addressing representations of gender, race, dis/ability, and sexuality in horror?
- How are women using horror tropes in and outside the genre (ex. action, avant-garde, comedy, sci-fi, etc.)?
- Theoretical approaches to horror and women creators
- Horror and the uncanny – manifestations of the macabre, eerie, and the psychologically unsettling
- Horror as a platform for exploring trauma, repressed memories, and the unconscious
- Women working within specific horror movements (found footage, New French extremity, torture porn, body horror, paranormal, etc.)
- Historical explorations of female horror filmmakers. Are there trends or traditions within women’s works?
- Horror and national cinema
To be considered for this panel, please send a 250 word abstract, 100 word author bio, plus 3-5 sources to Katia Houde at firstname.lastname@example.org or Maddison McGillvray at email@example.com by August 6, 2017. Successful submissions will be notified by August 14. Please include “SCMS” in your subject-line.
Ducournau, Julia. “From 'Babadook' to 'Raw': The Rise of the Modern Female Horror Filmmaker.” Interview with Phoebe Reilly. Rolling Stone. Oct. 2016. Web. 21 July 2017.