[EXTENDED DEADLINE] Diaspora Cinema and Media: Globalising the Local

deadline for submissions: 
February 22, 2022
full name / name of organization: 
AHRC Diaspora Screen Media Network


[extended deadline] Diaspora Screen Media Network virtual conference 17/18 March 2022 (Birmingham City University, UK)




Diaspora Cinema and Media: Globalising the Local




This AHRC-funded virtual conference is the culmination of the Diaspora Screen Media Network’s series of successful events. The network has been formed to examine and discuss the exciting new viewing practices in relation to screen media and social networking apps in the field of Black British and British Asian diaspora screen media.


This event will draw on earlier workshop presentations, and findings while also allowing for new areas of related discussion and investigation to take place. The topic for the event, ‘globalising the local’, might be approached through some of the following  perspectives: the new  viewing  contexts caused by the COVID-19 pandemic: the  expansion of the online digital environment;  the lockdowns and closure of public venues like cinemas, theatres and exhibition spaces; the  shift to the virtual world: i.e. screening platforms like Netflix, YouTube, Amazon Prime and BBC iPlayer;  the vital portals of social networking apps like TikTok, Instagram and Twitter, audience response and intercommunication; the changing patterns of representation with a need for greater sensitivities in relation to intersectionality (i.e. race, ethnicity, gender, class, disability, sexuality – especially LGBTQIA).Day One:  presentations of papers including keynote speakers.


Day Two: round table discussions on key strands of the network’s research agenda (by invitation)


a. Cinemas, festivals, the online industry


b. Social media, networks and apps


c.  Student engagement: cinemas, online streaming services, mobile technology. We invite anyone with an interest in the outlined topics to submit an abstract for a 20-minute presentation.  Or introduce your own. Panels will be developed from the abstracts.


Subtopics might include


  • Changing consumption patterns:  new audiences and viewers for the digital technologies- how to identify, measure and interact with viewers; big data
  • Changes in production, circulation and dissemination practices with reference to feature films, mini-series, and other visual culture (e.g. previews, pre-release trailers, You Tube clips)
  • Festivals (e.g. Flatpack; BFI; New York; Sundance; Cannes): highlights, community and international constituencies; dissemination practices
  •  Prizes and awards (Emmys and Oscars): patterns of viewing, dissemination and consumption
  • Comparabilities between major and minor streaming platforms, media companies,  subscription services  (e.g. Netflix, Neon, I-Player, You Tube,  BritBox, SkyQ, Acorn TV, Disney +, Amazon Prime)
  • Local, global and ‘glocal’ imaginaries – tracing strands in films, documentaries, mini-series: e.g.  production techniques, locations, performance, fashion, settings, music, mise en scene, narrative schema
  • Gender, ethnicity and class: the changing sociology of the Black British/British Asian cinematic text
  • Diversity of viewing patterns: changing attendance in public venues like multiplex cinemas; picture houses; theatres; private (home) cinemas with niche audiences
  • Black Lives Matter:  issues of Inclusivity, diversity and representation; industry racism and changing patterns of visibility
  • Online self-presentation and microcelebrity culture (e.g. Bilal Zafar, Michael Dapaah, Vee Brown, Asim Chaudhury, Mo Gilligan Ghuz Khan): the use of social media platforms
  • Changing settings and narratives: how do the new patterns of production and consumption affect styles of telling and techniques of presentation of Black British/British Asian visual culture? (e.g. role of social media in story line)
  • Black British/British Asian Music and film scores: South Asian disco music; soundtracks, original and adapted scores, UK Bollywood sound
  • Social media:  unregulated/alternative opportunities for diverse voice and presence; or form of ghettoization?
  • Funding and sustainability of new visual culture: social media; crowd sourcing and other methods
  • Reception: reviewing practices on social media, Rotten Tomatoes, traditional media etc; the voice of the reviewer; minority groups responses
  • The ‘glocal’ marketplace: mainstream versus minority; niche markets, market drivers in relation to public interest


Deadline for abstracts:


22 February 2022


Please send to David Simmons at David.Simmons@northampton.ac.uk


Publication:  Selected papers will be published in a special issue of the Journal of Postcolonial Writing (scheduled for 2023)