Archive for March, 2013

WebCite, The Online Citation Tool, Needs Help

March 28, 2013

WebCite, a non-profit tool used by some fan cultures and communities is asking for help in order to raise development funds, or it will close during 2013.

The online citation tool is often used to create back up links for “at risk” pages that are being cited, allowing users to take snap-shots for these online citations and access them at a later date.

This is the page about their campaign: https://fundrazr.com/campaigns/aQMp7

and here is some general information about the tool:
http://www.webcitation.org/faq

Please help publicise this campaign if you can!

(Thanks to Morgan Dawn for this information).

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CFP: The Women of James Bond: Critical Perspectives on Feminism and Femininity in the Bond Franchise

March 28, 2013

Editor:             Lisa Funnell, Ph.D., University of Oklahoma, lfunnell@ou.edu

The release of Skyfall in 2012 marked the 50th anniversary of the James Bond film franchise. The 23rd film in the series, Skyfall earned over one billion dollars (USD) in the worldwide box-office and won two Academy Awards (Best Sound Editing and Best Song). Amidst such popular and critical acclaim, many have questioned the representation of women in the film, viewing Skyfall in relation to the Bond film franchise at large. From the representation of an aging and disempowered M, to the limited role of the Bond Girl, to the characterization of Miss Moneypenny as a defunct field agent, Skyfall arguably develops the legacy of James Bond at the expense of women in the film. While the character of James Bond has historically been defined by his relationship with women (and particularly through heterosexual romantic conquest) and the franchise has long been accused of being sexist (among other things), the treatment of women in Skyfall recalls the media-driven backlash against feminist gains in the 1970s, which impacted the representation of women in the series—with the disempowering of female villains and the domestication of the Bond Girl. Since the prequel Casino Royale (2006) and its sequels Quantum of Solace (2008) and Skyfall (2012) constitute a rebooting of the franchise, it leads many scholars, like myself, to question if there is a place for women in the new world of James Bond and, if so, what role will these women play in the future of series?

This book seeks to answer these questions by examining the role that women have historically played in the Bond franchise, which greatly contributed to the international success of its films. This collection constitutes the first book-length academic study of the women of James Bond that moves beyond the discussion of a single character type (such as the Bond Girl) or group of films (such as the Connery era). This anthology will redress this critical oversight by providing a comprehensive examination of feminism and femininity in the Bond franchise. It not only focuses on the representation of women on screen (via casting, characterization, and aspects of stardom), but also includes a consideration of the role women have played in producing and marketing the franchise, female fandom and spectatorship, female scholarship on the franchise, and the widespread influence of the Bond series on the representation of female characters in other (non-Bond) films. This collection will offer a timely and retrospective look at the franchise, in light of the 50 year anniversary of the series, and provide new scholarly perspectives on the subject.

 Proposals are welcomed on the following topics:

i) Female Representation

  • ·       key characters/character types (Bond Girl, Bad Girl, M, Moneypenny)
  • ·       close readings of specific films
  • ·       trends in casting and characterization (between eras/phases of Bond)
  • ·       response of the films to different waves of feminism
  • ·       other women (e.g. opening credit sequence, secondary characters, movie posters)

ii) Women Producing/Marketing Bond

  • ·       the influence of Barbara Broccoli and other creative personnel
  • ·       musicians lending their voices and star power to the films (i.e. the musical “Bond Girls”)

iii) Female Fandom and Spectatorship

  • ·       reception studies of female spectatorship
  • ·       examination of the female pleasures in watching Bond

iv) Female Scholarship on Bond

  • ·       the ease/struggle in studying Bond
  • ·       the perception of female scholars in this field of study
  • ·       teaching and writing on Bond from a female perspective

v) Influence of the Bond Films on Women in Other Films

  • ·       the Bond Girl character type (e.g. True Lies)
  • ·       James Bond (e.g. Lady Bond films in Hong Kong)
  • ·       parodies/plays of the Bond films (e.g. Austin PowersAgent Cody Banks)

Please send a 500-word abstract (with bibliography and filmography) and an author bio as email attachments by May 15, 2013 to Lisa Funnell lfunnell@ou.edu  

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Call for Papers: Joss Whedon’s Firefly

March 27, 2013

Michael Goodrum (Essex) and Philip Smith (Loughborough)

It has been ten years since Joss Whedon’s Firefly (2002-3) was first screened. Although narrative covered only one season and a film, the series has enjoyed a long afterlife through comic books, a roleplaying game, and the fan community. Despite the continued interest in, and development of, the series, Firefly remains relatively unexplored in academic literature, particularly when compared to the critical attention directed towards Whedon’s earlier series, Buffy, the Vampire Slayer (1997-2003).

This volume, comprising of 12 essays, to be published by Scarecrow Press, seeks to address this imbalance. We are looking for 5,000-7,000 word contributions which fall into one of the following broad areas:

Politics

Race

Class

Agency

Preference will be given to proposals which satisfy one or more of the following criteria:

Contributions which are prepared to challenge, as well as celebrate, Firefly. Consider Firefly in light of the controversy over the casting of Avatar: The Last Airbender (2010), for example. How should we read a series with an abundance of Chinoiserie and very few (if any) Asian actors? How does the uncomplicated, humorous and stylized violence of Firefly and Serenity relate to the high instance of gun violence in the US and the very real violence of American military action overseas?

Contributions which examine Firefly alongside other texts. How does Firefly‘s Western/Sci-Fi multicultural landscape compare to the Noir/Sci-Fi multicultural city shown in Blade Runner (1982)? How does the portrayal of Asian cultures compare to that shown in Avatar: The Last Airbender? How does the relationship between the Browncoats and the Alliance compare to the Empire and the Rebels in Star Wars?

Contributions which include a consideration of Firefly and Serenity’s afterlife. How have the comics, roleplaying game and fan-made expansions of the universe changed the series? How have the creators used their respective mediums?

Contributions which show an awareness of existing Firefly scholarship. How does your work relate to the papers inInvestigating Firefly and Serenity (2008) and to Christina Rowley’s work on gender in Firefly? What are the limits of the existing scholarship?

Willingness to apply theoretical concepts. Contributions should be prepared to mobilise theory in their approaches toFirefly, particularly if dealing with agency.

Willingness to situate Firefly in a broader historical context. How does Firefly engage with prevalent themes in both US history and the history of international relations?

300-500 word proposals should be sent to mgoodr@essex.ac.uk by May 1st 2013. Proposals should include the author’s email address and affiliation. Full papers will be expected by September 1st 2013.

CFP: Time Travel in the Media edited collection

March 23, 2013

We are currently seeking chapter proposals for the first collection of essay to address time travel across different media formats. The collection, to be be published by McFarland, will be edited by Joan Ormrod (Manchester Metropolitan University) and Matthew Jones (UCL).

Time travel has been a topic that has fascinated the media since the 19th century. Indeed, cinema has used flashbacks and montage since its earliest days to experiment with time. However, film is not the only medium fascinated by the concept. Television series such as Doctor Who (1963-1989, 1996 and 2005-present), Quantum Leap (1989-1993), The Time Tunnel (1966-1967) and Torchwood (2006-2011) explore history and play with notions of time as a social construct. Video games, manga and animé also examine time travel’s unique narrative possibilities, for instance in The Legend of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time (1998) or Final Fantasy XIII-2 (2011). Graphic novels such as Watchmen (1986-1987) and superhero narratives use time travel to explore heroes’ ingenuity and the problems created by paradoxes.

Time travel narratives have invoked socio-historic concerns for subjectivity, narrativity, history, the future and potential apocalypse. The future and the past are frequently depicted as a means of understanding the problems of the present. Lately, time travel narratives have used philosophical issues based on scientific theories such as string theory, multiple universes and the philosophical construction of time. Contemporary time travel stories also acknowledge the potential for experimentation in media narratives. Such diversity surely requires more scrutiny in academic discourse. This collection of essays will be the first dedicated solely to the topic.

The collection is aimed at:

• undergraduate and postgraduate students in film and media, cultural studies, philosophy, social sciences, history and science programmes.

• science fiction and fantasy fandoms across a range of media.

The volume will address a broad range of media, including television, cinema, video games, anime and manga, comics and graphic novels and radio plays. It will be divided into five sections addressing narrative and media form, time travel as genre, philosophical and theoretical concepts, time and culture and a number of case studies

We are currently inviting 500-word proposals for 5000-7000 word chapters. These might address, but need not be limited to, the following topics:

• Adaptation and the differences between time in media forms
• Parallel worlds/alternative realities in virtual media, gaming and avatars
• Narrative devices such as the causal time loop
• Cinematic and media apparatus as time machine
• Experimental and avant garde depictions of time and time travel
• Narrative tropes
• Key characters – H. G. Wells, The Doctor, Sam Becket, Marty McFly
• Iconography – the time travel machine, distinguishing the past/future from the present
• The adaptability of the time travel narrative to many genres – science fiction, fantasy, romance, teenpics
• The depiction of history and historical characters
• The rules and regulations of time travel and parallel worlds
• The experience and means of time travel (machine, magic, supernatural)
• Use of specific theoretical models of narrative interrogation, such as psychoanalytic, carnivalesque, discursive, Deleuzian, Ricoeur, Bergson, postmodern and semiotic perspectives or new theoretical contexts
• Philosophical considerations, such as free will and determinism, religious and ritualistic perspectives
• String theory and parallel universes
• Socio-historic notions of time (linear time, cyclical time, the Enlightenment and the mythic)
• Tourism – cosmopolitanism, the flâneur
• Time-travel narratives within the context of their socio-historic production
• Case studies which examine a specific aspect of time travel in one text.

Proposals along with a 50 word biography should be sent to timetravelcollection@gmail.com

Deadline: 16 June 2013

SCMS Fan Studies Scholarly Interest Group

March 10, 2013

Fan studies scholar Casey McCormick has set up a Facebook and a Google group for those interested in creating a Fan Studies Scholarly Interest Group within SCMS (Society for Media and Cinema Studies).

You can join the Facebook group here:
http://www.facebook.com/groups/scmsfanstudies/

and the Google Group here:

https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/scms-fan-studies-sig

and find more info about SCMS here:
http://www.cmstudies.org

or you can tweet Casey for more info at @virtualcasey

Call for Papers: Upstairs and Downstairs: The British Historical Costume Drama on TV (from The Forsyte Saga to Downton Abbey)

March 9, 2013

The recent popular success of “Downton Abbey” calls for a renewed examination of such earlier BBC/ITV/Masterpiece Theatre serialized period dramas as “Upstairs Downstairs,” “The Pallisers,”and “The Forsyte Saga,” among others that have aired (and have been repeated)since the 1970s. We also want to examine how more recent dramas like “Downton Abbey” engage with these earlier productions in terms of style, thematic content, and programming.

We are seeking essays for a critical anthology that addresses such topics (but are not limited to) as the following:
 How the small screen period drama interrogates past and present gender/ class/race relations and notions of historical “authenticity”
 Transatlantic reception /interpretations
 How these TV serials fulfill and/or disrupt notions of “quality television”
 The afterlife of the serialized period drama on video/DVD
 The role of fans in shaping the content/reception of these dramas (message boards, role playing, Facebook and other social media sites that connect fans, etc)
 The relationship between history, heritage, and the costume drama
 Adaptation and the translation from historical novel to the TV miniseries
 How history and culture are commodified for popular audiences
 The feminization of history via the costume drama
 The relationship between these series and wider developments in TV or popular culture more generally
 How these programs have engaged with, or been received in relation to, ideas of region and regional difference
 How the development of the genre been bound up with technological changes, such as the use of video, widescreen and (more recently) HD

Please submit a 500 word abstract and brief CV by April 15 to the editors,
Julie Anne Taddeo, University of Maryland, USA
taddeo@umd.edu

And

James Leggott, Northumbria University, UK
james.leggott@northumbria.ac.uk

If accepted, the first draft of essays (approx. 7000 words) will be due
Sept. 15, 2013 (guidelines from press will follow).
Please note: Individual authors are responsible for permissions for any images reproduced in their essays.

CFP: Diversity in Speculative Fiction, Loncon 3, London, 14-18 August 2014

March 8, 2013

Diversity in Speculative Fiction

Loncon 3, Call for Papers

72nd World Science Fiction Convention

Thursday 14 to Monday 18 August 2014

London, UK

http://loncon3.org/

Guests of Honour:

Iain M. Banks, John Clute, Malcolm Edwards, Chris Foss,

Jeanne Gomoll, Robin Hobb, Bryan Talbot

The academic programme at Loncon 3, the 72nd World Science Fiction Convention, is offering the opportunity for academics from across the globe to share their ideas with their peers and convention attendees. To reflect the history and population of London, the host city, the theme of the academic programme is ‘Diversity’. We will be exploring science fiction, fantasy, horror, and all forms of speculative fiction, whether in novels, comics, television, and movies or in fanworks, art, radio plays, games, advertising, and music.

Proposals are particularly welcome on the works of the Guests of Honour, the city of London as a location and/or fantastic space, and underrepresented areas of research in speculative fiction. Examples of these may include, but are not limited to:

– Representation of alternative sexualities

– Speculative fiction by writers and producers of colour

– Non-English language media and/or fandoms

– The fantastic in unexpected places (greetings cards, pornography, opera, football stadiums)

– Digital comics

– The role of speculative fiction in Live Action Role-Playing

– The fantastic in music videos

– Speculative fiction in advertising

– European horror

Academics at all levels are warmly encouraged, including students and independent scholars.

We welcome proposals for presentations, roundtable discussions, lectures, and workshops/masterclasses.

The deadline for submission is October 1st 2013. Participants will be notified by December 31st 2013. All presenters must be in receipt of convention membership by May 1st 2014. Abstracts will be included in the Academic Programme Book, available to download from the Loncon website. It is anticipated that an edited volume showcasing the variety of topics presented will be published.

To propose a paper, please submit a 300 word abstract. To submit something other than a paper, please get in touch with Emma England, the academic area head, for an informal exchange of ideas.

emma.england (at) loncon3.org

Twitter: @AcademicLoncon3

 

Registration Now Open: ‘The small economies of the “new” music industry’, University of Bristol on 25th March.

March 2, 2013

Registration is now open for a one day conference on ‘The small economies of the “new” music industry’ at the University of Bristol on 25th March.

A draft programme, registration details and other information can be found on the website

http://www.bris.ac.uk/music/events/severnpopnetwork-conf

The programme includes some presentations on fandom and fan funding, so would be interesting for fan scholars. Places are limited, so please register as soon as you can!