Call for Papers: Action Cinema Now International Conference, 12-14 April 2019, Reading and London UK

At a moment when the relationship between popular culture, politics and society is again being sharply debated, action cinema as a dominant form of mass cultural production demands to be re-examined, as does the critical writing that has documented that form. Action films pose pressing questions about the extent to which a popular form can develop appropriate responses to the ethical dimensions of representation and marginalisation, particularly in a wider context of global multi-platform circulation. At the same time, they remain key sites of technological and aesthetic innovation and market negotiation shaped by complex local and global economic and cultural drivers.

This conference seeks to bring together scholars from a range of disciplines in a cross-continental, intercultural, intermedial and interdisciplinary examination of this wide-ranging form. To analyse action cinema in its heterogeneity, and in particular to skew away from traditional foci of action scholarship (such as the white cis-gendered male hero), the conference will be organised around four thematic areas: (1) regional exchange, (2) aesthetics, (3) performance, and (4) industry. Keynote speakers will be Professor Mary Beltrán, Professor Chris Holmlund, Professor Gina Marchetti, and Professor Yvonne Tasker.

We invite 20-minute papers that consider action cinema in terms of its genre boundaries and outreach, its forms and affect, and its significance within wider fields of representation in contemporary audiovisual culture.

Please submit your 500 word abstract, 5 bibliographic references, and brief bio, by 5pm UK time on 28 September 2018, to

We anticipate issuing acceptance notices on 31 October 2018. An anthology is planned following the conference.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Conference Organisers:
Dr Lisa Purse, University of Reading,
Professor Yvonne Tasker, University of East Anglia,
Professor Emerita Chris Holmlund, University of Tennessee-Knoxville,