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Online Bilingual Study Day

Global Gallicisms: Circulating Frenchness through Mainstream Film and Television, Friday 23 April 2021 (Microsoft Teams)

The programme and details for the day are available. Recordings of the day are also available on request.

This bilingual study day focused on the precise mechanisms, in turn giving rise to specific forms, by which French-accented cultural narratives find their way into post-national imaginaries. As well as considering the methodologies for studying the French - and more broadly European - post-national popular in film and television, it emphasised three key areas:

  1. funding, exhibition and distribution - an industrial approach, including quantitative as well as qualitative analysis;
  2. appropriations, including adaptations, remakes and other forms of pastiche, which travel transnationally both into and out of France;
  3. reception, aiming to complement qualitative (discourse) analysis with quantitative (box office data) analysis.

Stimulus questions:

  • What processes shape the identification and execution of projects on French popular films and/or television series within different (post-)national contexts?
  • What are the key channels for the circulation of mainstream French film and TV series at home and abroad, notably in the UK and USA? Who are the decision-makers and stakeholders in these processes? What determines which narratives are exported, and where? In other words, how do industrial mechanisms shape the possibility for cross-cultural encounters afforded by audiovisual industries?
  • How is one narrative received differently in particular national contexts? How is this inflected by considering other issues of positioning, both of films and also the discursive contexts of their reception (e.g. the cinephilic versus the popular press versus the ‘amateur’ viewer)? What specific factors may need to be considered when analysing post-national reception practices?
  • How do French TV and film industries mutually determine one another? How has the national cinema specifically responded to the challenges posed by the rise of post-national ‘quality’ TV? To what extent are aesthetics converging across transnational media?
  • What genres tend to export well? How might this have evolved of late (e.g. the rise of comedy), why and with what likely results for an outsider view of Frenchness?
  • How is this picture coloured by considering remakes, adaptations and other forms of quotation or appropriation, including of written or other non-audiovisual sources (such as stereotypes and historical ideas)?
  • Conversely, how can French narratives be understood by considering how the nation appropriates external models? What is the meaning of the national and/or post-national (popular) under such circumstances?

For further information please email Dr. Mary Harrod (project Principal Investigator)