When: Tue 13 June 2024, 10am-4pm
Where: Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh (in person)

Since the publication of Scottish Cinema: Texts and Contexts (Meir 2014), The New Scottish Cinema (Murray 2015) and Directory of World Cinema: Scotland (Nowlan and Finc 2015) there has been a notable absence of critical writing on Scottish Film and Television. Interest in Scottish screen cultures grew exponentially in the early part of the 20th century, with Duncan Petrie’s Screening Scotland (2000) kick starting a period of sustained enquiry into questions of representation, identity, genre, working cultures and screen policy across film and television.

This followed on from the scene setting work of McArthur et al in Scottish film criticism’s originating text, Scotch Reels (1982). Important work by a host of scholars such as Simon Brown, John Caughie, John Cook, David Martin-Jones, Sarah Neely, Jane Sillars, the aforementioned Murray and Petrie, among many others, brought about a flourishing of critical enquiry into Scottish film and television cultures in the early years of the 21st century. Though even within this relative fecundity, a focus on cinema significantly outweighed that of television.

Yet, with the landscape of film and television in flux, amid changing habits of consumption, the growth in screen production in Scotland, and the 2022 closure of Edinburgh Filmhouse and the Edinburgh International Film Festival, critical enquiry into the health (or otherwise) of Scottish film and television feels more urgent than ever.

This colloquium intends to bring together scholars interested in Scottish Film and Television in the broadest sense and active at all different career stages. We anticipate a day of collective fermentation, in which ideas might be shared, networks created, and collaborations formed. We intend it to be informal and discursive, and early career researchers and PhD students are particularly welcomed. We hope that the colloquium might spark a renewed scholarly interest in Scottish Film and Television in the broadest, most pluralistic sense. We also aim to establish a network for Scottish Film and Television Studies.

To that end we are seeking expressions of interest for 10-minute individual or collective presentations in the following areas or on other topics that contributors identify as important or potentially important aspects of Scottish film and television research:

  • Neglected histories of Scottish Film and Television:
    • particular films, TV programmes, cast and crew who have been marginalised historically; unexplored written / film archives; unmade film/TV projects
  • Issues of representation in Scottish Film and Television:
    • race, gender, class, disability etc
  • Industries and Infrastructures:
    • Questions of cultural policy, screen agency strategies, capacity and infrastructure (e.g., studios)
    • Questions of cultural labour, precarity and workforce diversity
    • Comparative studies of other small nations or UK regional filmmaking entities
    • Approaches to Film and Screen Education (cultivating audiences, training filmmakers, schools, film schools, universities, etc.)
    • Screen tourism and purported economic benefits of inward investment in screen production
  • Cultural and Intermedial relationships to literature and other media:
    • adaptation, genre, modes
  • Direction of critical study:
    • Revising questions of national / transnational Scottish cinema(s)

Please send a 200-word proposal for a 15 minute paper, along with a 50-word bio to Robert Munro (RMunro@qmu.ac.uk) by Fri 8 March 2024.