DWFTH 5 2021

Our conference, Doing Women’s Film and Television History (DWFTH), will be hosted by Maynooth University, Ireland, July 10-11 2021. The theme is ‘Histories of Women in Film and Television: Then and Now.’

This conference will be a hybrid conference. It will primarily be online with, if national and institutional publish health measures allow, some limited face-to-face elements. This conference will be in collaboration with ‘Women and the BBC’, a special themed issue of Critical Studies in Television.

Information about the conference, including the schedule, fees and a guide to delivering an online paper, will be released in due course.

The year 2020 has caused a great deal of sorrow, anxiety and difficulty across the world. With health and safety of paramount concern, conferences and research events – including the planned Doing Women’s Film and Television History conference – have been either impossible to hold in-person or, given the challenges presented by the need to sustain teaching and student welfare, deprioritized. As we look towards 2021, we understand that social distancing measures and travel limitations will possibly continue.

With this in mind, we plan to host a hybrid conference in 2021 as an outlet for our research that will enable us to share our scholarship with others, form connections and offer potential for collaboration. If national and institutional public health measures allow, the conference will combine on-campus and virtual events. While virtual conferences present new technical and communicative challenges, we also see the opportunities that this type of conference affords. Not requiring travel, it both reduces expense and can broaden networks of scholars.

The conference will be formed of pre-recorded talks, virtual live panels, live workshops, keynote talks with Q&As, and where possible, on-campus events.

The conference is formed of two areas:

1. Histories of Women in Film and Television: Then and Now

We are interested in topics focusing diversity and transnational histories, including but not limited to:

  • Women’s film and television histories at the margins of institutions and of research
  • Global women’s film and television histories
  • Researching women in film and television during the pandemic and times of crisis
  • International and comparative perspectives on women in film and television
  • Histories of women’s creative practice, production and technical work in various national, regional, or local contexts, including transnational film and television, migration and diasporas
  • Approaches to histories of women’s indigenous production, including Third Cinema and grassroots film and television production
  • Motherhood and film and televisions’ working practices
  • Histories of motherhood represented in film and television
  • Debates and controversies in women’s film and television histories

2. The BBC at 100: Women and the BBC, then and now

Recent controversies around equal pay, misogynistic abuse towards BBC personalities and a lack of female representation at the top of the corporation suggest that the institution has far to go in matters of gender equality. How might we characterise the relationship between corporate and on-screen representation of women? And how has the BBC responded to changing socio-cultural attitudes and discourses defining women over time?

We are particularly interested in contributions that:

  • address the historical and contemporary stories of female workers at the BBC
  • analyse how BBC programming gives representation to women’s lives
  • considers how the BBC serves female audiences
  • explores experiences of genders and sexualities.

Selected papers will be invited to publish in the special themed issue of Critical Studies in Television in Autumn 2022 on ‘Women and the BBC’.

Hosting of this conference is supported by Maynooth University and ‘The Motherhood Project’ at Maynooth University.