Eminent philosopher Jacques Rancière will give a lecture at the inauguration of The Centre for Film Aesthetics and Cultures (CFAC), University of Reading

Friday 2 May 2014, 6pm

Bulmershe Theatre, Minghella Building

University of Reading, Whiteknights Campus

Admission to this event is free, but seat availability is limited. To reserve your seat, please contact Gaenor Burchett-Vass: g.burchett-vass@reading.ac.uk.

‘Cinema and the Frontiers of Art’

Jacques Rancière

Ars gratia artis, the three words written on the scroll surrounding the head of the roaring lion at the beginning of the MGM movies may sum up the singularity of cinema. Cinema has blurred in many ways the frontiers separating pure art from the activities of the everyday and the forms of popular performance and entertainment. By the same token, it may have questioned the very unity of what we call art. Through examples borrowed from the history of film and from the history of cinephilia I wish to examine some aspects of this subversion of the frontiers of art.

Jacques Rancière, born in Algiers (1940) is Emeritus Professor at the University of Paris VIII, where he taught Philosophy from 1969 to 2000, and visiting professor in several American universities. His work deals with emancipatory politics, aesthetics and the relationship between aesthetics and politics. His books translated into English include notably: The Ignorant Schoolmaster (1991), Disagreement (1998) , The Politics of Aesthetics ( 2006) , The Future of the Image ( 2007), The Emancipated Spectator ( 2009), Proletarian Nights (2012) and Aisthesis (2013). He has authored three books dedicated to cinema (Film Fables, 2006; Bela Tarr. The Time after, 2013; The Intervals of Cinema, forthcoming, 2014)

The Centre for Film Aesthetics and Cultures (CFAC), University of Reading

The Centre for Film Aesthetics and Cultures (CFAC) will be a centre of international excellence in research and teaching of film, both with regard to its medium-specific qualities and its inherent interdisciplinary and intercultural properties. Endowed with an outward-facing ethos, CFAC will be a catalyst for expertise in film at the University of Reading. CFAC will understand aesthetics in its broadest sense: as an important branch of philosophy; as style and beauty pertaining to art; as a mode of cultural experience; and as sensory pleasure connecting filmmakers and film spectators. It will propose culture as the locale for human interaction and improvement, and as the necessary background for the analysis of any aesthetic object, most notably film, whose intercultural aspect derives from its own nature as an industrial and transnational medium. CFAC will investigate the ways in which film reflects the aesthetic politics inherent in the specificities of the medium as well as the cultural struggles and gains deriving from film’s interactions with different systems, practices and interests. CFAC will foster debates and links between the University of Reading and other research centres and film societies, as well as with the industries of production, distribution and exhibition, including international networks of arthouse film theatres and festivals. CFAC will keep a permanent schedule of activities, including: research grant management; national and international networking; conferences and workshops; seminar series; prestige lecture series; MA programmes; PhD and Postdoctoral training; publications and book launches.

To be included in the CFAC mailing list, please contact Prof Lúcia Nagib: l.nagib@reading.ac.uk

CFAC Staff

Director: Prof Lúcia Nagib

Executive Committee: Alison Butler; Dr Charles Ludwig Leavitt; Mr Chris Wagstaff; Dr John Gibbs; Prof Jonathan Bignell; Dr Jonathan Dronsfield; Dr Lisa Purse; Dr Peter Miskell; Dr Rachel Garfield; Prof Susanne Clausen; Dr Rebecca Hillman.

Associate Members: Prof Alison Jayne Donnell; Dr Andreas Behnke; Prof Anna McMullan; Dr Christina Hellmich; Prof Catherine Leglu; Dr Cindy Becker; Dr Daniela LaPenna; Dr Faye Woods; Guy Baxter; Dr Julia Waters; Prof Lib Taylor; Dr Madeleine Davies; Dr Neil Cocks; Dr Paola Nasti; Dr Rob Banham; Sara Zadrozny; Dr Simone Knox; Dr Ute Wolfel; Amrit Maghera-Johal.


Staging Beckett Inaugural Conference 2014: Constructing Performance Histories



Staging Beckett Conference: Constructing Performance Histories: REGISTRATION NOW OPEN

4-5 April 2014, Minghella Building, University of Reading, Whiteknights Campus

Staging Beckett’s Inaugural Conference on 4 – 5 April 2014 will focus on the history, documentation and analysis of Beckett’s theatre in performance in the UK, Ireland and internationally.

Staging Beckett: The Impact of Productions of Samuel Beckett’s Plays in the UK and Ireland is an AHRC-funded project which runs from 2012-2015. It is a collaboration between the Universities of Reading and Chester and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. The project is compiling a database of all professional productions of Beckett’s plays in the UK and Ireland, with accompanying research resources. The project’s conferences are: Staging Beckett: Constructing Performance Histories (Reading April 4-5, 2014), Staging Beckett in the Regions (Chester, 11-12 September, 2014), and Samuel Beckett and Contemporary Theatre Cultures (Reading, April 2015).

Staging Beckett blog: http://blogs.reading.ac.uk/staging-beckett/

Staging Beckett: Constructing Performance Histories features papers on productions of Beckett from across the globe, including Belgium, Brazil, Hungary, India, Ireland, Mexico, Poland, Turkey, the United States and the UK. Topics will cover Beckett and stage design, Beckett’s theatrical intersections with Pinter and with Shakespeare, staging Beckett in situations of censorship, or crisis and resistance from besieged Sarajevo to the Occupy movement in Zuccotti Park New York, staging Beckett beyond the theatrical frame, and performance histories and perspectives.

Registration fee: £50 per day waged; £30 per day students, seniors and unwaged: book online here.

Keynote Lecture: ‘Beckett and the Non-Place in Irish Performance’, Professor Brian Singleton, Trinity College Dublin, Friday 4th April, 2.30pm

Practitioners’ Panel: ‘Staging Beckett Now’: Saturday 5th April, 3pm.

Natalie Abrahami (director of Happy Days, starring Juliet Stevenson at the Young Vic, London, Feb-March 2014)

Lisa Dwan (recent performances of Not I / Footfalls / Rockaby at the Royal Court and Duchess Theatre, London, on tour during 2014)

Sarah Jane Scaife (director of site specific performances of Act Without Words II and Rough for Theatre 1 in Dublin (2013), Limerick, London and New York).

The Staging Beckett Research Team: Matthew McFrederick (Reading), Anna McMullan (Reading), Patricia McTighe (Reading), David Pattie (Chester), Graham Saunders (Reading), David Tucker (Chester).

New Postgraduate Studentships for overseas students

We are delighted to announced that there are two new schemes available to overseas students applying for postgraduate study in the department. Both schemes offer a £5000 one-off payment and to be eligible you must hold an offer from the University of Reading:

  • Santander Academic Achievement Scholarships. Open to Masters by Research and PhD applicants from Brazil, Mexico or Colombia. The closing date for applications is 30th May 2014. Further information and how to apply.
  • Postgraduate Taught Country Scholarships. Open to Masters by Research applicants from one of the following countries/areas: Latin America, Commonwealth of Independent States, India, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Indonesia, Vietnam, Turkey and Jordan. Applicants must be wholly or partially self-funded. The closing date for applications is 2nd May 2014. Further information and how to apply.

For further information on these funding opportunities, please contact Professor Lúcia Nagib.

New Postdoctoral Fellow in FTT!

Dr Igor Krstic, from the University of Mannheim (Germany), was awarded a DAAD postdoctoral fellowship to develop his research project, ‘Accented Essay Films’ in FTT, under the supervision of Prof Lúcia Nagib. He will spend 12 months with us, starting on 1st May 2014. During this period Igor will not only work on his research but also contribute to all our other activities.