CFP: Audience Conference


Call for presentations: Audience Conference, 6 July 2023 
Hosted by Birmingham Centre for Media and Cultural Research, Birmingham City University

Audience is one of the pillars of media studies, alongside industry and text. Accordingly, the current Birmingham Centre for Media and Cultural Research (BCMCR) research theme returns to audience as a concept, to consider methods for studying and addressing audiences in our own research practice, and how we train our students to think about and to study audiences at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. As part of this project, we are holding a one-day conference to share current theorisations and uses of audience as a concept.

There are many questions we can ask about the state of audience today. For example, how do media literacy and misinformation, populism and democracy, short-form viral content, and different humanities ‘turns’ (archival, transnational, memory, etc.) reshape or confirm scholarly views of what an audience is? Is there still a ‘mass’ audience, in the UK or elsewhere? Are the methods we use for audience research fit for purpose, given the huge swathes of people who have, historically, been left out of audience research?

Areas of interest can include but are not limited to:

    Audience as viewer/listener/reader

    Audience as commodity

    Audience as consumer, user, player, and/or citizen

    Audience as participant/producer

    Audience in the singular or plural 

    Fan audience(s)

    National/international/transnational audience(s)

    Methodology and audience research

    Pedagogy and audience research

Please send 300-word abstracts (for individual presentations no more than 20 minutes long) and a short author bio to by 5 May 2023. We aim to communicate decisions by 19 May 2023.

Panel proposals are also accepted: please submit a rationale alongside abstracts for each contribution (max. 750 words total, rationale and abstracts together).

Thank you,
Charlotte Stevens and Hazel Collie
Birmingham Institute of Media and English
Birmingham City University


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