Archive for November, 2014

CFP: Exploring 30 Years of Studio Ghibli: Spirited Discussions

November 22, 2014

Exploring 30 Years of Studio Ghibli: Spirited Discussions

A Cardiff University and UEA collaborative project – 18th April 2015 Cardiff University 

2015 marks the 30th anniversary of Studio Ghibli, and with that anniversary it is time to reflect on the domestic and global success of Japan’s most famous animation studio. With the retirements of Studio Ghibli’s most famous director, Hayao Miyazaki, and it main producer, Toshio Suzuki earlier this year, the future of Studio Ghibli is in turmoil, provoking rallying cries from fans and critics alike. The Wind Rises may have been Miyazaki’s swan song, but this is not his first retirement. Despite Miyazaki’s professed departure, Ghibli’s other directors like Miyazaki’s founding partner, Isao Takahata, and Hiromasa Yonebayashi have produced recent hits of varying degrees for this powerful studio that suggest overlooked aspects of the Studio in need of further analysis and discussion. This anniversary year is therefore a pertinent time to celebrate and critically reflect on Studio Ghibli, not only exploring Miyazaki’s famous films, but also considering other facets of the Ghibli universe. This symposium explores a diverse range of topics, exploring the wide international appeal of Studio Ghibli and the cultural significance of everything from the studio’s canon to its more obscure local activities.

Submissions from a variety of theoretical and methodological perspectives are welcomed, with possible topics including (but not limited to):
• Discourses of national and transnational cinema
• Animation methods and the role of cel animation versus CGI
• Ghibli anime in comparison to other animation
• The role of children in Ghibli cinema
• Adaptation of literature stories to cinematic texts
• Ghibli’s relationship to other media such as TV series, commercials, music videos, and videogames
• Merchandising and fan objects/creations
• The Ghibli Museum and discourses of space
• The role of auteur(s) and mass media production
• Postcolonial Studies
• Subtitles, dubbing, and translating texts
* Ghibli as brand and business
• Cross-cultural fan practices
• Wider socio-political issues played out in Ghibli narratives
• The studio’s history, development and relationships with outside institutions

Please send a proposal of 250-500 words and a CV/resume, or if you have any queries, to by the 15th January 2015.


New issue of Journal of Fandom Studies published (Vol 2, Issue 2, October 2014)

November 7, 2014

The Journal of Fandom Studies has published a new issue – Volume 2, issue 2. The Table of Contents are as follows:

Fandom studies as I see it
Author: Henry Jenkins

Customized action figures: Multi-dimensional fandom and fannish fiction
Author: Victoria Godwin

Canon authors and fannish interaction
Author: Maria Lindgren Leavenworth

Negotiating meaning in the consumption of the past
Authors: Fiona Smith and Mary Brown

Writing with the Winchesters: Metatextual Wincest and the provisional practice of happy endings
Author: KT Torrey

Review of Doctor Who in Time and Space: Essays on Themes, Characters, History, History and Fandom, 1963–2012, Gillian I. Leitch (2013)
Author: Brandon Konecny

The webpage and article links can be found here:,id=2759/

Call for Papers: Television Genres in the Age of Abundance

November 7, 2014

Call for Papers: Television Genres in the Age of Abundance

Comunicazioni Sociali – Journal of Media, Performing Arts and CulturalStudiesIssue III 2015

The arrival of digital technologies was supposed to spell the end of the line for television, the most dominant medium of the last half of the twentieth century. However, the opposite has happened — there is more television than ever before and, as Toby Miller recently put it, “people like it more than ever”. As a result, many people have rushed to characterize what has become of the medium.

This special issue of Communicazioni Sociali is devoted to making sense of how television genres have changed and adapted in an era where more television is more abundant than ever. There are those, such as Jason Mittell, who claim that we are living in an age of “complex TV” that is characterized by considerable innovation in narrative styles of dramatic television series. However, this reflects a small — albeit important — portion of the total amount of television available across a range of channels. Such developments are part of the constant back-and-forth between media industries estimations of what their audiences expect and desire from particular television genres and the economic opportunities that arise from them. Others note the narrative possibilities that have been created due to television’s incredible mobility, available on different technological platforms from 3D televisions mounted on the wall to cell phones and tablets. Services like Netflix provide new opportunities for accessing television programming, like House of Cards, while at the same time capturing audience information that allows them to determine future productions as well as to organize its existing catalogue in categories such as “Goofy Comedies”. Governments have increasingly become active in the television business, with channels like RT and France 24 as examples of networks producing programming that mimics the style and content of commercial all-news networks. Although there is greater emphasis on our ability to record and replay television programming according to personal preferences, the live event — especially sports — remains a key component in the economics and aesthetics of television.

Possible topics include, but are not limited to:
-Genre versus series, or episodes, or season as an object for television analysis
-Genre and the study of television industries
-Genre and the construction of celebrity within television
-Making sense of “mixed” genres, (eg: “dramedies”, ‘Biopics”)
-The “Netflix” effect and the creation of “micro-genres”
-Theoretical approaches to the study of television genres
-Continuities and discontinuities in TV genres
-Case studies of specific, contemporary genres: news, soap operas, talent and variety shows, reality programming, drama, sitcoms, satire, documentary, awards programs, sports
-Television networks built around generic styles (all-news, cartoons,food, travel, lifestyle)
-Gender and the discursive construction of genres as “masculine” or“feminine”
-Genre, sound, and television style
-Mainstream and marginalized genres of television within different national or regional contexts
-Genre and transmedial and/or intermedial storytelling
-Genres and production styles within “algorithmic culture”
-Genres, distribution and scheduling
-The role of paratextual and promotional material in the construction of generic identity
-The legal and regulatory framework around genre production
-Seriality and the consumption of television genres
-Television criticism as a genre

Deadlines & Guidelines

Please send your abstract to both the editors Massimo Scaglioni (massimo.scaglioni@unicatt) and Ira Wagman ( ) byJanuary 31, 2015. All notifications of acceptance will be emailed no later than February 15, 2015. Abstracts must be from 300 to 400 words long, and may be presented in English or French. The proposal shall include: 5 key words, authors, institution, and contacts (email), together with a short curriculum for each author.

If the proposal is accepted, the Author/s will be asked to send thewhole article by May 1st 2015. Contributions will be sent to two independent reviewers in a double-blind procedure prior to publication decision. Articles should be of between 4,000-5,000 words in length (no more than 35,000 characters, spaces and notes included), but shorter articles will be considered.

CFP: The Aesthetics of Online Videos

November 6, 2014

The Aesthetics of Online Videos (Special Issue of Film Criticism)

Scholarship on online videos often focuses on digitalization, user interfaces, and/or the phenomenon of peer-to-peer sharing. While such issues (and related matters of cultural globalization, the amateur/professional divide, and alternative forms of distribution) are certainly relevant to studying online videos, these approaches tend to foreground social impacts over aesthetic analysis. 

This special issue of Film Criticism seeks essays that turn attention to formal and stylistic aspects that have been downplayed in the analysis of online videos. Examining online videos as cultural artifacts worthy of aesthetic analysis and interpretation, this issue invites contributions from a range of methodological and theoretical approaches. As a whole, the issue seeks work that engages online videos as aesthetic objects, considering visual and sound style, without losing sight of the electronic, digital, and online context of this form.

Potential topics may include (but certainly are not limited to):
* Animal videos (e.g., viral videos, unedited/streaming nature documentaries)
* Ubiquitous “social videos” (e.g., on Vine, Facebook, Buzzfeed, Metacafe, Vimeo)
* Online video poetics (historical development in form, style, production practice)
* Online video genres (documentary, drama, sports, news, music, etc.)
* Web original series, webisodes, online video channels
* Aesthetics of online video conferencing, TED talks, interviews
* Political, advocacy, and other forms of persuasive videos
* Political mash-ups
* Online video activism
* Online promotional culture (e.g., trailers, promos, “bonus” videos, choose your ending ads, branded videos, sponsored videos, product or service demos)
* ‘Haul,’ ‘unboxing’ and other shopping videos* Web original series, webisodes and online video channels
* Online music videos (as well as parodies, remixes, amateur ‘covers’ etc)
* Amateur and fan videos (mash-ups, spoilers, covers, etc.)
* Recycling (online clips and highlights from film and television)
* Video blogs (vlogs), lifecasting, YouTube celebrity videos/sites
* Shock and/or Stunt videos (parkour, pet tricks, etc.)
* Videos of video gameplay
* How-to videos
* Virtual Tours
* Experimental/avant-garde videos
* Gifs

Send 500 word proposals along with a brief 100 word author bio to Stephen Groening by November 15 2014

On TV: Children and Television Conference

November 4, 2014

On TV: Children and Television Conference

14-15 November 2014
The Showroom Cinema, Sheffield

A reminder that registration is open for On TV but please register soon. Registration form available at:

On TV is a space to celebrate and explore all things television. This year, the inaugural festival tunes into the characters, catchphrases and colour of children’s television. A range of academics and industry speakers are contributing to the academic strand, speaking on shows from Doctor Who, My Little Pony, Newsround, Horrible Histories and more and debating topics from transmedia and branding, to the changing nature of public service broadcasting. The festival will begin on Friday evening and continue all day on Saturday.

Keynote speakers:

·         Prof Maire Messenger Davies, author of Children, Media and Culture, Dear BBC and many studies of children and television

·         Anna Home, one of the original Jackanory production team, commissioner of Grange Hill and Teletubbies, Chair of the Children’s Media Foundation

Join the Facebook group: