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PORN STUDIES: FilmForum 2020 Call for Papers – Pornographic Subjectivities: Sexuality, Race, Class, Age, Dis/Ability

FilmForum 2020 Call for Papers – Pornographic Subjectivities: Sexuality, Race, Class, Age, Dis/Ability

XVIII Gorizia International Film Studies Spring School
Porn Studies Section
Gorizia, March 28th-31st, 2020
Deadline for proposals: December 31st, 2019

The 2020 edition of the Porn Studies section of the MAGIS – International Film Studies Spring School aims to investigate pornography as a dispositive of subjectivation (Foucault 2001), that is as a complex and heterogeneous assemblage of technologies, institutions, discourses, practices, ideologies (Agamben 2009) able to create subjectivity through a mixed economy of power and knowledge (Rabinow and Rose 2003). The main goal of the section is therefore to understand what kind of subjects are produced by pornography and how they are constructed, with particular attention to the intersections between sexuality and race, class, age, dis/ability.

Drawing loosely on Jacques Derrida’s philosophical reflections, we could say that pornography-as-dispositive is informed by a carno-phallogocentric logic, that is by «the scheme that governs the production of the subject in Western culture» (1992). According to Derrida, this subject is produced by means of a process of exclusion (of other subjects) and through the construction of a structural Otherness. Pornography has always established complex and contradictory relations with this scheme. On the one hand, pornography (or, a specific kind of pornography) seems to reiterate (and reinforce) the logic of carno-phallogocentrism, in that it seems to create the quintessential «sovereign subject»: white, male, heterosexual, able-bodied, young, and (upper) middle-class. On the other, pornography (or, another kind of pornography) seems to undermine the carno-phallogocentric scheme from the inside, deconstructing some of the central nodes on which it is based, building instead heterotopic spaces in which subjects seem to develop new and decentralized subject positions.

With this in mind, we invite proposals that explore, but are not restricted to, the following topics:

  • pornographic representations of race, class, age, dis/ability, present and past
  • pornographic stereotypes about race, class, age, dis/ability and their changing historical contexts (Rosello 1998)
  • marked bodies (Holmes 2012) in pornography
  • re-appropriation of representation by decentralized subjects
  • oppositional modes of production and perverse viewerships beyond the framework of visibility politics organized about the nexus of positive-negative images  (Nguyen 2014)
  • essentialist vs. constructivist readings of race, class, age, dis/ability and naturalization vs. denaturalization of difference in pornography
  • fetishization of race, class, age, dis/ability in pornographic production
  • industrial niches (such as, for instance, interracial, “chav porn”, granny porn, disability porn, etc.) and commodification of race, class, age, dis/ability within long-tail economy (Anderson 2004)
  • stars and performers, present and past (for example, Jeannie Pepper, Lexington Steele, Nina Hartley, Long Jeanne Silver, Brandon Lee, Asa Akira, etc.)
  • specialized films, film series, websites, platforms channels and categories on porn aggregators based on race, class, age, dis/ability

The deadline for the submission of papers and panel proposals is December 31st, 2019.

Proposals should not exceed one page in length. Please make sure to attach a short CV (10 lines max).

The conference fee is €150.

Selected papers will be considered for an edited collection within the book series “Mapping Pornographies: Histories, Geographies, Cultures” (Mimesis International, Milan-London).

 

Address questions and proposals to:

goriziafilmforum@gmail.com, e.biasin@libero.it, g.maina@gmail.com, federico.zecca@uniba.it

 

The Porn Studies section of the Gorizia International Film Studies Spring School is now one of the most important conferences in the field of porn studies, opening space for innovative approaches and methodologies for investigating the relationships between sex, commerce, media and technology. Drawing together the work of leading scholars from around the world (including Peter Alilunas, Feona Attwood, Lynn Comella, Kevin Heffernan, Peter Lehman, Alan McKee, John Mercer, Susanna Paasonen, Eric Schaefer, Clarissa Smith, Thomas Waugh, Linda Williams) as well as emerging scholars, the School has mapped a transformed landscape of sexual representations and coordinated a new wave of research. The section is also specifically focused on the relationship between production and dissemination of knowledge and related industrial/archival/artistic practices: artists, performers, archivists, curators, and media practitioners in general have been involved in the debate through screenings, curator talks, artist talks, and panel discussions (among others, the School has hosted talks by directors such as Bruce LaBruce, Ashley Hans Scheirl, Anna Span).

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