Television and Empathy [Edited Collection]

deadline for submissions: 
December 19, 2021
full name / name of organization: 
Michael Samuel, Unviersity of Bristol
contact email: 

Call for Papers


Television and Empathy


Edited Collection 



What is television’s capacity to elicit empathy?



‘Stories move us. They make us feel more emotion, see new perspectives, and bring us closer to each other’ (Netflix, 2021). Television can grant us extended access to a diversity of perspectives and narratives. Meanwhile, interactive technologies and the internet promise more personal and collective relationships with the small screen, and with each other, than ever before. This collection asks, what is television’s capacity to elicit empathy?


Scholars are encouraged to approach this question from a broad range of angles and disciplines. These might include, but are not limited to, 


-    TV genres, fictional and factual

-    Audio-visual grammar 

-    Narrative, character and perspective 

-    Writing and editing

-    Channels and platforms

-    Social media and online TV culture 

-    Space and place 

-    History and historical moments

-    Technologies and viewing experiences

-    Animation and visual special effects 

-    Marketing and paratext 


I am particularly keen to receive explorations of television outside of the UK and US. 

At this point, I am seeking abstracts of 300 words plus a 150-word author biography by 19 December 2021. If selected, you will be invited to submit a chapter of up to 7000 words to be included in the collection. Email Michael Samuel at using the subject line 'TV and Empathy'.

The project has already attracted the interest of a UK academic publisher. Details of the publisher will be confirmed at a later date. 


Dr Michael Samuel is a Lecturer in Film and TV Studies at the University of Bristol. He is the author of Northern Exposure A Cultural History (Rowman & Littlefield 2021) and Popular Factual Heritage Television (2022), and co-editor of Streaming and Screen Cultures in the Asia-Pacific (Palgrave 2022) and True Detective Critical Essays on the HBO Series (Lexington, 2017).