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Wars in series

Guerres en séries

International and pluridisciplinary conference on the treatment of war TV series

Colloque international et pluridisciplinaire sur le traitement des guerres dans les séries télévisées

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Published on Monday, June 10, 2013 by Luigia Parlati

Summary

The year 2014 will mark a hundred years since the outbreak of the First World War and seventy years since D-Day in Normandy. On this occasion, the Centre d'Histoire des Sociétés, des Sciences et des Conflits (CHSSC) at the University of Picardie-Jules Verne (Amiens, France) will hold an international and pluridisciplinary symposium to explore the way TV series represent war.

Announcement

Argument

The year 2014 will mark a hundred years since the outbreak of the First World War and seventy years since D-Day in Normandy. On this occasion, the Centre d'Histoire des Sociétés, des Sciences et des Conflits (CHSSC) at the University of Picardie-Jules Verne (Amiens, France) will hold an international and pluridisciplinary symposium to explore the way TV series represent war.

Whether the combat itself, the everyday life of civilians, or the difficult emergence from wartime, the representation of war has been a focal point for many television series and miniseries since the 1950s, dealing with the violence and heroism of the battlefield as well as the suspense of of different characters’ survival. Among the most well-known series, many come to mind like Combat, M*A*S*H, Dad's Army, Hogan's Heroes, Baa Baa Black Sheep, or more recently Band of Brothers, Generation Kill, Un Village Français, Hatufim and its American counterpart Homeland, Downton Abbey and Parade's End, not to mention science fiction and fantasy series like Battlestar Galactica, Star Trek and its numerous spin-offs, or Game of Thrones.

Thelmes

While the issue of how violence is represented will naturally be at the core of our analysis, it will be equally vital to question the specific narrative techniques in these types of series:

  • How is it possible to maintain suspense when the outcome is already known (as is the case for historical series)
  • How do war series glorify combatants and/or denounce the absurdity of war or of a specific conflict?
  • How do these series treat the diplomatic, strategic, economic, social and cultural stakes of war?
  • How do they represent ongoing conflicts?
  • What discourse, what images are deemed acceptable by / for a certain audience at a specific time and in a specific broadcasting context?
  • How is the "war on terror" represented without identified enemies?
  • Unlike cinema, TV series are inscribed in the domestic sphere and in repetition, generally broadcasted on smaller screens, and for a less captive audience. Budgets are smaller and production time shorter. Does all this mean that they represent war differently from movies? How, on the contrary, does the long duration of TV series allow to represent the intricacies and consequences of conflict?

Although the representation of the two World Wars will undoubtedly be the focus of a great many papers, we welcome analyses of all wars, real or imaginary, whatever the time period and the country or countries concerned. TV series of any country may be taken as an object of study, in papers delivered either in French or in English. Finally, we also invite the study of the implicit or explicit echoes of current or past wars in TV series even when the focus of the series is not on war itself. 

Submission guidelines

Please send a 300-word abstract and a 100-word biographical note (in English or in French)

to marjolaine.boutet@gmail.com 

by October 30, 2013.

The result of the selection will be communicated in December 2013.

Scientific committee

  • Marjolaine Boutet (MCF, UPJV)
  • Manon Pignot (MCF, UPJV)
  • Sylvaine Bataille (MCF, U. de Rouen)
  • Sarah Hatchuel (PR, U. du Havre)
  • Monica Michlin (MCF, U. Paris Sorbonne)
  • Ariane Hudelet (MCF, U. Paris Diderot)
  • Donna Andréolle (PR, U. du Havre)
  • Shannon Wells-Lassagne (U. de Bretagne-Sud)
  • Barbara Villez (PR, U. Paris 8)

The conference is supported by GUEST-Normandie (Groupe Universitaires d'Etudes sur les Séries Télévisées basé en Normandie).

Places

  • Université de Picardie - Logis du Roy
    Amiens, France (80)

Date(s)

  • Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Keywords

  • guerre, séries télévisées, colloque pluridisciplinaire, sociologie des médias

Contact(s)

  • Marjolaine Boutet
    courriel : marjolaine [dot] boutet [at] gmail [dot] com

Information source

  • Marjolaine Boutet
    courriel : marjolaine [dot] boutet [at] gmail [dot] com

To cite this announcement

« Wars in series », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Monday, June 10, 2013, https://calenda.org/252769

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