Forthcoming publications

New publication: Amateur Media and Participatory Cultures…

New publication: Amateur Media and Participatory Cultures. Film, Video, and Digital Media by Annamaria Motrescu-Mayes and Susan Aasman (Routledge, 2019)

This book aims to delineate the boundary line between today’s amateur media practice and the canons of professional media and film practice. Identifying various feasible interpretative frameworks, from historical to anthropological perspectives, the volume proposes a critical language able to cope with amateur and new media’s rapid technological and interpretative developments. Building on key research questions and content analysis in media and communication studies, the authors have assessed differences between professional and amateur media productions based on the ways in which the ‘originators’ of an image have been influenced by, or have challenged, their context of production. This proposes that technical skills, degrees of staging and/or censoring visual information, and patterns in media socialisation define central differences between professional and amateur media production, distribution and consumption. The book’s methodical and interdisciplinary approach provides valuable insights into the ways in which visual priming, cultural experiences and memory-building are currently shaped, stored and redistributed across new media technologies and visual channels.


‘As one of the founders of this new field of research, I can vouch that we’ve been all waiting for this type of book on amateur media. The authors have carefully considered the last decades of research done on the theme of amateur media practice, from home movie making to digital and online productions, and raised pertinent theoretical issues as well as opened new research avenues. A timely and important book.’ Professor Roger Odin, Emeritus Professor of Information Sciences and Communication at Paris 3 – Sorbonne Nouvelle.

‘This fiercely original book widens amateur media cartographies by recalibrating with interdisciplinary methodologies, global visualities, and participatory media platforms. It insists amateurism is not marginal, but ubiquitous as its variegated practices migrate across histories, ethics, counter histories, archives, technologies. A massively significant, daring, rigorous, and field-changing intervention into amateur media studies.’ Patricia R. Zimmermann, Professor of Screen Studies, Ithaca College, USA.

More information is available here.

‘Towards a global history of amateur film practices and institutions’

Forthcoming Film History special issue titled ‘Towards a global history of amateur film practices and institutions’ (2017), guest edited by Enrique Fibla-Gutiérrez and Masha Salazkina.

CFP Cinema of Exploration: Essays on an Adventurous Film Practice

Cinema of Exploration: Essays on an Adventurous Film Practice‘, Editors: James Leo Cahill (University of Toronto) and Luca Caminati (Concordia University, Montreal)

Deadline for abstracts: March 15, 2017

Contributions are invited on topics such as:

– The auteur as explorer (Antonioni, Herzog, Rossellini, Rouch, Wenders, etc.)
– Space travel; science fiction travelogues; NASA and other space agencies image making productions
– Underwater filmmaking
– Scientific filmmaking; micro-cinema; medical image-making
Non-professional filmmakers, amateur explorers, DIY technologies and aesthetics of exploration; home-made or family travelogues; Go-Pro films.
– Media arts productions; gallery and museum installations
– Film festival devoted to travel and exploration films
– Experimental/avant-garde cinema of exploration; experimental anthropology
– Nature as spectacle; National Geographic-style and its earlier versions (safari and expedition films, etc.)
– Cinema of exploration in relation to didactic and educational films (National Outdoors Leadership School, Exploration Film Tour, etc.)
– Military filmmaking
– Histories of critical debates about the status of the cinema of exploration in film and media
– The impact of the study of cinema of exploration on film historiography – Ecological impact of filmmaking on the environments and species

“Film and media scholars have begun to pay increasing attention to the entangled histories of cinematic media and forms of exploration: from audiovisual documentation of explorations of nature, people, and places, on the one hand, to what Stan Brakhage has called “adventures in perception,” or the manner in which these media may also be instruments of exploration in their own right, tracing the depths and limits of perception and the perceivable. From early cinema’s panoramas and travelogues, to more recent made-for-TV spectacles and immersive IMAX experiences, scholars have begun to examine and conceptualize the histories of this heterogeneous mode of filmmaking, demonstrating its often underexamined importance to some of the key questions posed by cinema and media studies. In light of postcolonial and globalization theories, as well as ecological and environmental criticism, attention has been given to filmic practices perceived as instruments of colonization, conquest, and ecological devastation through visual surveying, capture, and domestication. The legacies of imperialism, racism, and orientalism haunt the history and even present practice of the cinema of exploration. This mode of production has been tightly entwined with the extraction and exploitation of resources, territories, and species that have become increasingly politicized and urgent in an era of increasing ecological precarity. But these same practices have also been instrumental in cultivating wonder about the world and its multifarious inhabitants, and even serving as sites for reimagining one’s relations to them.

With these ideas in mind, we invite contributions to an anthology on “Cinema of Exploration: Essays on an Adventurous Film Practice.” We seek essays that discuss the implications of exploration filmmaking around the world in relation to the technological, social, cultural, and economic developments that marked its emergence and import in different geopolitical contexts. We welcome essays that tackle the global tradition of travel films from early anthropological reportages to different contemporary variations on the theme of the travelogue, presented through a wide array of modes of filmmaking (anthropological, “national geographic”, documentary, experimental, avant-garde, “fakes”, etc.). Of interest are explorations of film genres contingent on the trope of cinematic exploration (wild-life documentaries, Westerns, space operas, etc.). We are also looking for contributions focused on a wide variety of scientific exploration through film, from early examples of science documentaries and theoretical discourses, to the contemporary debates on the role of micro-cinema in the recording of experiments and other audiovisual technologies of life sciences.

Some questions that animate our endeavors are: How does the development of these practices and discourses impact our understanding of the history and geography of moving images? How do they both reflect and impact the actual technological and sociocultural developments of our age? What role have these traditions played in the development of film theory, media epistemology, and concepts of perception, world, and universe? How have exploration films changed in the Anthropocene?

Send a 500-600 word abstract and a brief biographical note to and by March 15th, 2017. The editorial team will notify selected proposals by April 15th, 2017. We expect completed manuscripts (between 7,000 and 9,000 words) be due December 1st, 2017, and accepted for publication pending editorial and external readers evaluation. All submissions will be subjected to double blind peer review.”


CFP: Visualizing the 70s

CFP invites contributions on ‘Amateur media production in print culture, television, film/video’ for The Mise-en-scène of a Decade: Visualizing the 70s

Deadline for submitting a 100 word abstract and a 100 word bio: December 20, 2016. Possible topic areas include but are not limited to:

Afterimages of the Vietnam War, but also any other of the decades many anti-imperialist flashpoints (Nicaragua, China, Ireland, Grenada, etc.)
Moments between modernism and post-modernism in architecture and other arts, as well as residual and non-North American modernisms.
Visual cultures of computing and communication
Media archaeologies focused on the 1970s
Post-industrial landscapes and urban decay
Visual culture (or afterlives) of 1970s communisms (Soviet Union, Yugoslavia, China, Cuba, etc.)
Digital and visual effects technologies in popular and experimental media
Iconographies of 1970s unionism, GLBT activism, second-wave feminism, environmentalism, and anti-nuclear movements
Reflections on the historical ontology of 1970s visual culture. What are the many “auras” at work in these artifacts? How do they resonate with us affectively today?
Amateur media production in print culture, television, film/video 
Visual histories of East v. West and Global North/South.
Representations of inflation and inflationary panic, but also any of the other various “states of emergency” linked to the period (Oil Crisis, Three Day Work-Week, etc.)
Landscapes and iconographies of racial integration and segregation
Transnational histories charting visual flows and cross-cultural encounters or fusions.
Legacies and after-images of 1960s counterculture (Whole Earth Catalog, etc.)
Theoretical (but visually inflected) reflections on periodizing the 1970s.
Sexual cultures of the 1970s, from pornography to the singles scene
Aesthetics of 1970s state politics (iconographies of Nixon, Carter, Heath, Wilson, Trudeau)
Utopian images of the 1970s
Sitcoms, movies-of-the-week, mini-series, and other televisual forms.
Nightclubs, malls, arcades, and other cultural spaces and environments.
Present-day representations of the 1970s in popular culture (The Iron Lady, Inherent Vice, Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy)
Vernacular and mass cultural architectural spaces—malls, shopping plazas, suburbs, retrofitted industrial shopping/entertainment zones
Present-day media culture of the 1970s (Pintrest, photo filters, Tumblr photography accounts, graphic design)
1970s imaginings of the future, but also present texts which fantasize alternate versions of the 1970s themselves.

Essays should be between 5000 and 8000 words in length and in keeping with Imaginations’ mandate pieces may include visual content as part of their argumentation rather than as simply supplemental material. Please send full submissions to and including a 100 word abstract and a 100 word bio by December 20, 2016. Please include any images separately, as well as embedded in the submission, as high quality (300 dpi) files. Full Submissions will be due by April 2016.

CFP: Amateur Film and the Institution (Film History Special Issue)

See CFP below:

Film History – Special Issue: “Amateur Film and the Institution

Guest Editors: Enrique Fibla, Masha Salazkina (Concordia University)

Deadline for abstracts: October 15th, 2016

In recent years, Film Studies scholarship began to pay more attention to the effects that various non-theatrical film initiatives – such as educational, industrial, and other institutional productions – have had on the way modern life is ordered, experienced and imagined. Although amateur film initiatives have sometimes been included in such debates, their relationship to professional film expressions and institutions has not yet been explored in depth. Shifting discourses on the status of amateurism vs. professional aesthetics have shaped much of film criticism and theory, emerging with particular force at certain moments in history. Yet, usually deemed a mere hobby devoted to recording family gatherings and trips, amateur cinema’s rich history as a vernacular media form, with its own journals, circulation circuits, and particular relationship to actuality is yet to be fully explored. Likewise, the current amateur digital media explosion has gathered scholarly attention, but it remains to be articulated in relation to a more comprehensive history of vernacular media. Such histories can potentially allow for a new map and timeline of moving image production to emerge: countries or regions previously deemed peripheral for film history due to their lack of a strong film industry may become relevant to rethink the space that film occupies in cultural history globally.

With these ideas in mind, the Amateur Film and the Institution special issue looks to discuss the different implications of amateur cinema around the world in relation to the technological, social, cultural, and economic developments that marked its emergence in different contexts. A central task of the special issue will be to interrogate the relationship between amateur practices and broader film institutional developments and open a conversation by addressing a range of questions, such as: What role did amateur production play in the institutionalization of film? What kind of alternative institutions did amateurs create? How does the development of these practices and discourses impact our understanding of the history and geography of moving images?

We invite contributions from scholars and practitioners to submit paper proposal on the history of film amateur practices around the world. Topics may include, but are not limited to:

-Archival institutions and non-professional film
-Non-professional film movements, journals, and festivals
-Amateur pornography
-Political potential of amateur cinema
-Amateur filmmaking and experimental/avant-garde cinema
-Self-made productions and the contemporary digital culture
-DIY technologies and aesthetics
-Amateur film in relation to industrial and educational films
-Histories of critical debates about the status of “the amateur” in film and media
-New geographies of moving image history beyond commercial film
-The impact of the study of amateur cinema on film historiography

Send a 500-600 word abstract and a brief biographical note to  and  by October 15th 2016. The editorial team will notify selected proposals by November 1st 2016. Completed manuscripts (up to 9,000 words) will be due February 1st 2017, and will be accepted for publication pending editorial and external readers evaluation. All submissions will be subjected to double blind peer review.

For further information on Film History journal submission guidelines see: http://www.iupress. CDpath=4

In addition to scholarly articles, we invite submissions of relevant previously unpublished original documents on this topic, in English or in translation, to be included in the special issue.

CFP: ‘ Home Video & Media Texts’

‘CFP “Home Video & Media Texts” – Post Script Special Issue
Editor: Richard Nowell

Despite exerting an almost unprecedented influence on audiovisual cultures across the globe, home video has inspired a relatively narrow range of scholarly inquiry. On the one hand, media theorists and historians have tended to consider how this multifaceted phenomenon facilitated changes to the structure and organization of national film industries, especially that of the United States. On the other, they have examined the responses of stakeholders such as fans, moral watchdogs, and state institutions, especially in the United Kingdom. By contrast, apart perhaps from hardcore pornography, comparatively little attention has been paid to the ways in which home video shaped the texts the media industries crafted and disseminated; not only films but also movie marketing campaigns, companies’ brand identities, and works of professional criticism, to name but a few. As a consequence of these tendencies, home video has come to occupy something of an exceptional position in media historiography insofar as it has yet to provoke the type of sustained, multi-directional analyses rightly devoted to other technologies and means of delivery, such as television, widescreen, multiplexing, DVD, and new media like the internet and mobile telecommunications. By shifting attention from industrial structures and the dynamics of various forms of critical reception toward home video’s affect on texts produced by the culture industries, this issue of Post Script hopes to contribute to the larger task of deepening understandings of the economic, aesthetic, and social impact of arguably the most important change in content delivery and consumption of the late twentieth century.

Accordingly, submissions of original essays are sought, which may cover, but are by no means limited to, the relationships between home video and:
– the types of film produced
– the types of film imported into a specific country or region
– the character of specific film genres
– trans-generic content
– the content of individual films and series
– the content of international co-productions
– multimedia collaborations and tie-ups
– marketing campaigns and strategies
– professional magazine and book publishing
– corporate or institutional branding
– public personae of media workers

Interviews with industry professionals relating to this topic are also welcomed.

Those interested in being considered for inclusion in this issue of Post Script should submit an abstract of 200-300 words along with an academic bio of around 100 words, to  no later than 30 September 2015. All acceptances will be issued within a couple of days of this deadline (if not sooner). Please feel free also to direct any general inquiries about this issue of Post Script to the aforementioned email address; a swift response is guaranteed.

Completed essays can be expected to be 7,500-8,000 words in length (including references and bibliography), with final drafts expected late summer 2016 (exact dates to be confirmed upon

Richard Nowell teaches American Cinema at the American Studies Department of Charles University in Prague. He is the author of Blood Money: A History of the First Teen Slasher Film Cycle (Continuum, 2011), the editor of Merchants of Menace: The Business of Horror Cinema (Bloomsbury, 2014), and has published essays in several volumes and journals including Cinema Journal, the Journal of Film and Video, the New Review of Film and Television Studies, and previous issues of Post Script.

POST SCRIPT is a refereed journal, publishing three times a year for the last thirty-four years, and is indexed by the Federation Internationale des Archives du Film (FIAF); The International Index to Film Periodicals; Film/Literature Index; MLA International Bibliography; An Index to Book Reviews in the Humanities; Gale, EBSCO, and, the International Index to the Performing Arts(Chadwyck-Healey). POST SCRIPT does not publish any work that has previously appeared in print with the possible exception of a translation of rare material not generally accessible to scholars.’

New book: ‘Amateur Filmmaking. The Home Movie, the Archive, the Web’

Amateur Filmmaking. The Home Movie, the Archive, the Web. Editor(s): Laura Rascaroli, Gwenda Young, Barry Monahan, Bloomsbury Academic, 2014

Table Of Contents 
Laura Rascaroli, Gwenda Young, Barry Monahan: Introduction. Amateur Filmmaking: New Developments and Directions

1. Roger Odin: The Home Movie and Space of Communication
2. Liz Czach: Home Movies and Amateur Film as National Cinema
3. Maija Howe: The Photographic Hangover: Reconsidering the Aesthetics of the Postwar 8mm Home Movie
4. Mark Neumann: Amateur Film, Automobility and the Cinematic Aesthetics of Leisure

5. Heather Norris Nicholson: Cinemas of Catastrophe and Continuity: Mapping Out Twentieth-Century Amateur Practices of Intentional History-Making in Northern England
6. Gwenda Young: Glimpses of a Hidden History: Exploring Irish Amateur Collections, 1930–1970
7. Annamaria Motrescu-Mayes: Uncensored British Imperial Politics in Late Colonial Home Movies: Memsahibs, Indian Bearers and Chinese Communist Insurgents
8. Karen Lury: The Amateur Film: From Artifact to Anecdote
9. Janna Jones: Starring Sally Peshlakai: Rewriting the Script for Tad Nichols’s 1939 Navajo Rug Weaving

10. Efrén Cuevas: Change of Scale: Home Movies as Microhistory in Documentary Films
11. Barry Monahan: Creating Historiography: Alan Gilsenan’s Formal Reframing of Amateur Archival Footage in Home Movie Nights
12. Stefano Odorico: “That Would Be Wrong”: Errol Morris and His Use of Home Movies (As Metalanguages) in Feature Documentaries

13. Richard Kilborn: “I am a Time Archaeologist”: Some Reflections on the Filmmaking Practice of Péter Forgács
14. Ruth Balint: Representing the Past and the Meaning of Home in Péter Forgács’s Private Hungary
15. Dominique Bluher: Necessity Is the Mother of Invention, or Morder’s Amateur Toolkit
16. Dominique Bluher: Joseph Morder, the “Filmateur”: An Interview with Joseph Morder
17. Laura Rascaroli: Working at Home: Tarnation, Amateur Authorship, and Self-inscription in the Digital Age

18. Susan Aasman: Saving Private Reels: Archival Practices and Digital Memories (Formerly Known as Home Movies) in the Digital Age
19. Patricia R. Zimmerman: The Home Movie Archive Live
20. Tianqi Yu: An Inward Gaze at Home: Amateur First Person DV Documentary Filmmaking in Twenty-First Century China
21. Lauren S. Berliner: Shooting for Profit: The Monetary Logic of the YouTube Home Movie
22. Abigail Keating: Home Movies in the Age of Web 2.0: The Case of “Star Wars Kid”
23. Max Schleser: Towards Mobile Filmmaking 2.0: Amateur Filmmaking as an Alternative Cultural Practice

Further Resources

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