CFP: ‘Sex and the City Ten Years On: Landmark Television and Its Legacy

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Conference at the University of Roehampton, London, Friday April 4 2014

Abstract deadline – November 17 2013

 2014 will mark ten years since the final episode of Sex and the City (HBO 1998-2004) was broadcast. During the programme’s six seasons, and throughout the decade following its finale, Sex and the Cityhas continued to be recognised as one of the most contentious and cherished series in recent television history, having tapped into a zeitgeist consumed by postfeminism to become a cultural touchstone. In a July 2013 New Yorker article, Emily Nussbaum lamented the manner in which the show has been ‘downgraded to a ‘guilty pleasure’’ by some, while male-centred series are readily revered, reminding readers that this was ‘sharp, iconoclastic television. High-feminine instead of fetishistically masculine, glittery rather than gritty and daring in its conception of character’. Embraced and vilified with unforgettable vehemence by audiences, critics and the media, this conference will explore the ways in which the impact of SATC continues to be felt across popular culture. The SATC brand or franchise lives on, in an ‘afterlife’ that has included the TV series’ international syndication; the release of two Sex and the City movies; Candace Bushnell’s literary prequels to her original Sex and the City newspaper column and novel; TV prequel The Carrie Diaries; and broadly, a television marketplace that is hugely indebted to the ways in which the series rewrote the boundaries of the medium.

Sex and the City Ten Years On: Landmark Television and its Legacy’ will mark this anniversary by revisiting the lasting influence of the series, its cultural circulation today and its impact on the medium of television. Topics for papers may include, but are not limited to:

–       SATC in translation and transnational contexts

–       SATC in syndication and the contexts of HBO/cable v network television

–       SATC and adaptation (newspaper column to ‘novel’ to TV series to film)

–       The transition of the series from small to big screen

–       The reception of, and controversies surrounding, the SATC movies

–       Television and postfeminism

–       Fashion television

–       Television and authorship

–       The relationship between SATC and subsequent women-centred series (eg The L Word;Desperate Housewives; Mistresses; Girls)

–       Television and stardom

–       Queer television

–       TV and genre/generic hybridity

–       Magazine and newspaper journalism and popular television

–       The role of key players in SATC (cf Darren Star, Michael Patrick King, Patricia Field)

–       Reception, fandom and anti-fandom

–       Recontextualising SATC in the recession

–       Television and consumerism

–       Women, language and female talk

–       Television and taboo

–       Women and comedy

–       Television, NYC and representations of urban space

Any enquiries, and abstracts of approx. 300 words with a brief biog, should be sent to Deborah Jermyn at d.jermyn@roehampton.ac.uk  by November 17th.

Twitter  @SATC10th /  Facebook group at ‘SATC 10 Years On Conf’.

This is one not to miss..

Published by kirstyfairclough

Kirsty Fairclough is Associate Dean: Research and Innovation in the School of Arts and Media at the University of Salford, UK and Chair of the University Women’s Voice Network. She has published widely on popular culture and am the co-editor of The Music Documentary: Acid Rock to Electropop (Routledge), The Arena Concert: Music, Media and Mass Entertainment (Bloomsbury) and Music/Video: Forms, Aesthetics, Media. New York, (Bloomsbury) and author of the forthcoming Beyoncé: Celebrity Feminism and Popular Culture (I.B Tauris) and co-author of American Cinema: A Contemporary Introduction (Palgrave). Her work has been published in Senses of Cinema, Feminist Media Studies, SERIES and Celebrity Studies journals and she has made several television and radio appearances. Kirsty has lectured internationally on popular culture, feminism and representations of women most notably at The Royal College of Music, Stockholm, The University of Copenhagen, Second City, Chicago, Columbia College Chicago, Middle Tennessee State University, Unisinos Brazil and Bucknell University, Pennsylvania. She has significant experience in international partnership development, particularly in North America and developed the Salford Popular Culture Conference series with international partner universities, including I’ll See You Again in 25 Years, Twin Peaks and Generations of Cult Television: A Two Day International Conference (University of Salford, May 2015) and Mad Men: The Conference (Middle Tennessee State University, May 2016) and Purple Reign: An interdisciplinary conference on the life and legacy of Prince, a three day international academic conference hosted by the School of Arts and Media, University of Salford, UK and the Department of Recording Industry, Middle Tennessee State University, USA.

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