Small Cinemas Conference From the Grassroots to the Global

deadline for submissions: 
April 30, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
contact email: 

Small Cinemas Conference

From the Grassroots to the Global

 November 9-10, 2018

Boca Raton, Florida Atlantic University


In an increasingly globalized world where digital technology has gained greater access to socio-economically marginalized communities, the parameters of small cinemas have broadened their scope to include digitally shot material from portable devices like cellphones in an era of transnational internet distribution alongside its ongoing and historical association with national cinemas and celluloid-based products. 


This conference explores the breadth of small cinemas that punctuate the contemporary moment and their links to earlier historic cinematic formations. “Small cinemas” provides an overarching term that incorporates works that embrace the periphery produced at the national level, within local communities, and transnationally among multiple media-makers; theatrical and non-theatrical distribution; videos/films made in the service of politically engaged social movements as well as for artistic experimentation; objects that explore the politics of aesthetics and the aesthetic of politics; and groups and individuals who forge a new notion of the cinematic as well as reject the very term. We encourage academics and media-makers alike to submit proposals


This two-day conference will be hosted by the School of Communication and Multimedia Studies at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Florida on November 9-10, 2018. Conference events will include screenings in our school’s Living Room Theaters ( as well as opening and closing plenaries on the past, present, and future of small cinemas.


Topics and videos/films related to the following topics are encouraged but not limited to:


  • Radical media and film of 1968 and its inheritances upon the present
  • Non-theatrical distribution both off and online
  • Funding small cinemas/making a living
  • Communal, regional, national, and transnational cinemas
  • Third Cinema’s inheritances upon the present
  • Counter-cinema and digital technology
  • Small cinema’s relation to social movements/grassroots cinema as small cinema
  • Micro-cinema movement
  • Film festivals
  • Surveillance/counter-surveillance/sousveillance
  • Alternative exhibition practices
  • Small cinema and participatory cultures
  • The avant-garde and small cinemas
  • Legacy of small cinema for digital media
  • Small cinema and the state
  • Small cinemas and the archive
  • Itinerant cinemas
  • Small cinema, modes of production, and constraint
  • Exilic cultures and small cinema


Abstracts of no more than 300 words with a short bio are due by April 30th 2018. Please send to: and We will also hold some film screenings, so we encourage the submission of short-form works (no more than 20 minutes). Please send a link to the work you are submitting.