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March 2016, Week 3


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Cynthia Miller <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 18 Mar 2016 14:30:50 +0000
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CFP: From Infinity to the Abyss: Gods and Monsters in Science Fiction Film
An area of multiple panels for the 2016 Film & History Conference:
Gods and Heretics: Figures of Power and Subversion in Film and Television
October 26-October 30, 2016
The Milwaukee Hilton
Milwaukee, WI (USA)

DEADLINE for abstracts: June 1, 2016

AREA: From Infinity to the Abyss: Gods and Monsters in Science Fiction Film

Yuri Gagarin, the first human in space, reputedly said "I looked and looked but didn't see God." When Stanley Kubrick looked, he saw a cosmic star child.  Ridley Scott found massive opportunities for capitalism to go awry. Whether capitalist entrepreneurs, monstrous aliens, colonial neo-gods, monsters from the id, or God waging war against communism, clearly the vacuum of space needs to be filled with a transcendent signifier. 

This area welcomes proposals for 20-minute papers that focus on a broad range of depictions and interpretations of the monstrous, heretical, and divine in science fiction film. We encourage papers that examine how physical space relates to, alters or replaces religious space in modernity—from silent to postmillennial science fiction film. We welcome and encourage papers focused on the transcendental nature of human experiences in outer space from a wide range of moving picture types; animation to live action, films from different nations and cultures, independent films, as well as films and television programming produced by major studios. 

Topics for papers might include, but are not limited to: 

•	Imaginings of extra-terrestrial Hell, and/or outer space transcendent as Heaven
•	The 1950s space film and godless atheism 
•	Post-humanist visions of human gods or radioactive demons 
•	Geometrical extraterrestrials in futuristic films such as 2001: A Space Odyssey 
•	Deep-space industrial production in 1980s science fiction film
•	Superhero gods from outer space 
•	Nano- and biotech creations of sentient environments and their implications 
•	Aliens as gods or heretics
•	The monstrous as transcendent in outer space
•	Capitalist and colonialist appropriation of terrestrial space, and beyond 
•	The Nietzschean Superman and looking into the abyss in dystopian science fiction 
Proposals for complete panels (three related presentations) are also welcome, but they must include an abstract and contact information, including an e-mail address, for each presenter. For updates and registration information about the upcoming meeting, see the Film & History website (

Please e-mail your 200-word proposal by 1 June 2016 to the area chairs:
Wendy Sterba 
College of St. Benedict/ John’s University
Brandon Chitwood 
St. Paul College
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