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August 2016, Week 4


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Erin Giannini <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 23 Aug 2016 12:05:38 -0600
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Power, Profits, and Paranoia: Corporate Conspiracies in Contemporary

*Editors: Erin Giannini and Eve Bennett*

While unscrupulous corporate executives and the unethical behaviour of Big
Business have long been staples of Hollywood cinema, the last fifteen to
twenty years have seen a worldwide explosion of interest in these themes on
the small screen. Perhaps reflecting a growing public awareness that it is
now companies rather than governments who are the holders of true global
power (an idea popularised by the likes of Naomi Klein’s international
bestseller *No Logo *and the documentary *The Corporation*), a plethora of
television drama series featuring corporate crime and conspiracy have
appeared in recent years, produced by a range of countries from Europe,
North America, Asia and beyond. The proposed volume seeks to explore this
phenomenon, which, as yet, has received little critical attention. Our hope
is that it will provide a jumping-off point on which future work can build.

Chapters may focus on any fiction television (including VOD) programme/s
that debuted no earlier than 1995. We would especially welcome
contributions dealing with programmes from countries other than the UK and
USA. Some examples of these include: *Blue Eyes*/*Blä ögon *(Sweden,
2014-2015), *À droite toute *(France, 2008), *The Code *(Australia, 2014-
), *Follow the Money*/*Bedrag *(Denmark, 2016- ), *Continuum *(Canada,
2012-2015), *Charlie Jade *(South Africa/Canada, 2005), *Mario *(Italy,
2013-2014), *Pied Piper*/*Piribuneun Sanai *(South Korea, 2016- ) and *Pokémon:
The Series *(Japan, 1997- ). For further examples, see the list here
note: this is a crowd-sourced document so we can’t guarantee the accuracy
of the information contained in it).

Though not prescriptive, the following list of topics may provide

   - Studies of the televisual representation of:
         - Complicity and cooperation between governments and corporations
         - Private military contractors and the corporatised war industry
         - Corporations as the new exercisers of biopolitical control (e.g.
         in shows featuring bio-research firms, such as *Fringe *and *Orphan
         - Corporate espionage
         - Corporate lobby groups (e.g. arms, pharmaceuticals, tobacco)
         - Unethical corporations in programmes primarily aimed at children
         (e.g. *Pokémon*, *Captain Planet*, *Sesame Street*)
         - Corporate malfeasance and the environment

   - Studies of the representation of corporate crime and conspiracy across
   the work of particular writers or showrunners (e.g. Joss Whedon, Rob Thomas)
   - Studies of the representation of corporate crime and conspiracy across
   a single, long-running programme (e.g. “The Sun Makers” in classic *Doctor
   Who*; Cybus Enterprises in the reboot)
   - Corporative narratives and genre
   - Corporate narratives and gender
   - Corporate conspiracies and dystopian or end-of-the-world narratives
   - The influence of earlier conspiracy texts (e.g. Pakula’s “paranoia
   trilogy”) on more recent televisual examples
   - Subversions or parodies of the corporate conspiracy trope
   - Contrasting corporate narratives in different environments (e.g. how
   are these narratives portrayed or received in the UK vs. Germany, or US vs.
   - Extra-textual analyses of corporate conspiracy narratives (see, for
   example, Giannini’s “‘Charybdis Tested Well With Teens’: *The Cabin in
   the Woods* as Metafictional Critique of Corporate Media Producers and
   Bennett’s “Deconstructing the Dream Factory: Personal Fantasy and
   Corporate Manipulation in Joss Whedon’s *Dollhouse*“

Please send any questions or abstracts of 300-400 words for chapters of
approximately 6000 words plus a short biography to
[log in to unmask] by the 15th of September 2016. First
drafts of chapters will be due by the 15th of January 2017. We are in
contact with an interested publisher and envisage a 2018 publication date.
Contact Info:

Eve Bennett, London Metropolitian University

Erin Giannini, Independent Scholar

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