SCMS 2015 Proposed Panel: "Toward a Critical Transnational Cinema," deadline June 30

full name / name of organization: 
Joy Schaefer & Beth Tsai, Stony Brook University

CFP for SCMS 2015 Proposed Panel: "Toward a Critical Transnational Cinema"

Society for Cinema and Media Studies annual conference, March 2015, Montreal, Canada

There is an emerging preference in film studies for the term "transnational" instead of "world" or "global" cinema. Key topics within transnational film studies include border crossing, migration, diaspora, mobility, and the circulation of cultures and capitals.
And yet, the concept of transnational cinema is used more often than it is defined. What exactly is transnational cinema, and how can we come to use this term most productively?

For one thing, the term transnational can be understood as a way to describe cultural and economic forces that are rarely contained by national boundaries but cannot be generalized by the term globalization. As Kathleen Newman defines it, the transnational is lies above the national but below the global. If "world cinema" refers to the films that are made outside of Hollywood, "transnational cinema" can refer to films that are not only multinational in terms of financing, production and distribution, but also transcend borders in terms of reception.

With a view to rethink the concept in a more definite theoretical terrain, our panel will ask how the transnational both reflects and reshapes the national paradigm. How can we productively understand transnational cinema within diverse local, historical, and (inter)cultural contexts, but also as a response to wider industrial, social, and political forces? What could be gained and/or lost by looking at films from a transnational perspective, rather than a national, international or regional framework? Can a conceptualization of transnational cinema negotiate the desired effects of certain revolutionary cinemas, such as "Third Cinema" as Solanas & Gettino define it?

This panel seeks to examine this phenomenon in its multiple facets and in the context of film as a rapidly changing technological and institutional practice. It aims to offer a global view of this trend and map out how transnational cinemas interrelate on technical, aesthetic, cultural and political levels. In-depth case studies of particular local and international cinematic traditions are also welcome if they take into account the conceptualization and proliferation of the transnational approach.

Topics may include, but are not limited to:
• Defining transnational cinema
• (Trans)nationalism and globalization in film studies
• Film festival circuits and transnational film production
• Mobility and border crossing in transnational cinema
• Transnational women filmmakers

Please send a 250-word abstract and a short bio by June 30, 2014 to BOTH Joy Schaefer ( and Beth Tsai ( Notifications of acceptance/rejection will be sent by Friday, July 18, 2014 (the deadline for conference proposals is Friday, August 29, 2014).