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1984: Freedom and Censorship in the Media Conference

MCKENNA, Mark (2014) 1984: Freedom and Censorship in the Media Conference. Sunderland University London Campus.

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Abstract or description

A conference that I organized at the University of Sunderland London Campus to coincide with the thirtieth anniversary of the Video Recordings Act. Please see the original call for papers below and the trailer and programme for the conference.

Call for Papers

Worries over effects of media content and technologies are never far from
the headlines. When anxieties centre on protecting children and the
fortification of the social fabric, regulation often seems like the first
resort. The year 2014 will see the thirtieth anniversary of the 1984 Video
Recordings Act (VRA): this event offers the opportunity to reflect on how
and why concerns about individual media technologies and particular media
genres become so important that campaigners and politicians can claim that
‘the very soul of the nation’ is at stake. Using the VRA as a starting
point, this conference aims to critically examine the key issues in
politics and campaigning which shape calls for censorship. If new
technologies always spark old anxieties around ‘effects’ and propensities
to cause ‘harm’, what might we learn from extant legislation and their
implementation? As we settle into the internet age and media on demand,
policing national media borders seems ever more futile, yet the clamour for
legislation to protect children and society shows no signs of abating.

We invite submissions that explore issues relating to censorship which may
be specific to the history, implementation and legacies of the Video
Recordings Act but we also welcome papers which examine media
regulation/censorship in contemporaneous issues and their historical
antecedents. Their broader cultural contexts, which are national and
international in focus and which draw connections between

Suggested topics:

Evolving practices and technologies of media classification and/or
‘Problematic’ media cultures
Regulation of representations of sex, gender and sexualities
Digital and online censorship
Oppositional voices
Protecting and questioning national borders
Campaigns and campaigners
Activism/activists and the political arena
International narratives of censorship
British regulation in a global context
National and international regulation/censorship
Documentary and avant-garde
Controversies around computer games
History of contemporary film censorship/classification
Audiences and the social experiences of censorship
Censorship and the creation of communities of dissent
Regulations and government policy

Proposals for individual papers or pre-constituted panels are welcomed. The
submission deadline is 17th January 2014 and notifications of acceptance
will be made by the 31st January 2014.

Proposals should include title, abstract (350 words), 3-5 key
bibliographical references, along with the name of the presenter,
institutional affiliation and biographical information (100 words), and

Panel organizers are asked to submit panel proposals including a panel
title, a short description of the panel and information on all the papers
following the guidelines listed above.

Panels may consist of three speakers with a maximum of 20 minutes speaking
time each.

All submissions, expressions of interest and inquiries should be sent to:

Please see the conference website for more details:

Item Type: Other
Additional Information: Conference: 1984: Freedom and Censorship in the Media - Where are we now? Sunderland University London Campus, 23/04/14
Faculty: School of Computing and Digital Technologies > Film, Media and Journalism
Event Title: 1984: Freedom and Censorship in the Media - Where are we now?
Event Location: Sunderland University London Campus
Event Dates: 23/04/14
Depositing User: Mark MCKENNA
Date Deposited: 22 Feb 2019 09:33
Last Modified: 24 Feb 2023 13:54

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