Film & History conference 2016

Well, I had intended to post more during the conference, but have been so busy attending people’s presentations, meeting new and amazing people passionate about the same things I am, and spending some time exploring Milwaukee that, well – here I am the day after finally sitting down to post! [and here I am 2 days later in Washington DC finally with good enough WiFi and able to finish the post!!!]

I’m doing this sitting in the cafe at the amazing Milwaukee Art Museum with it’s incredible view of Lake Michigan (and its astounding architecture), after which I’m going to see their exhibit Haunted Screnes: German Cinema of the 1920s a complete happy accident of timing!

Like all conferences this one was a bit of a blur, with a whirlwind of papers that will take a while to settle into my mind. But what struck me most (at this point in processing it all) was the enthusiasm, diversity and talent on display. Many presenters were mid-candidature PhD students, presenting work they were no-doubt more than a little nervous about, but which demonstrated an exceptionally high quality of scholarship (which is aLos excellent news for future generations of screened history).

I will admit to having been more than a little nervous about my own paper, as I was talking about my argument that, if History and film is to reach its full potential, and be able to fully engage with its diverse past, it needs to be reconceptualised as Screened History. I was making this argument at the film and History conference – held by the Film and History Journal! Even with the theme of Gods and Heretics: figures of power and subversion in film and television I felt no little sense of heresy and hubris in my argument! But my paper was met with warmth and enthusiasm and I’m really pleased to say I made a number of new connections that I hope will result in some exciting new projects. (So no dad, I wasn’t run out of town!)


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