18,366 research outputs found

    "Painting with faces": The casting director in American theatre, cinema, and television

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    In Casting By (2012), HBO’s documentary on the casting director, Martin Scorsese praises his close working relationship with his casting director. “More than 90% of directing” he asserts, “is the right casting.” Taking as its starting point that the casting director is, as Scorsese’s enthusiasm reveals, a vital but often unrecognized part of the production team, “‘Painting with Faces’: The Casting Director in American Theatre, Cinema, and Television” offers the first extended scholarly analysis of the profession. This comparative history broadens the concept of what constitutes a decision-maker in three major culture industries by arguing that casting directors, often devalued as feminized clerical labor, exercise more control over the creative and economic aspects of production than we usually acknowledge. Chapter one, “The Pre-Professional Casting Director,” offers a pre-history of the theatrical casting processes to explain how and why the professions of casting director and talent scout emerged in the twentieth century. Examining how casting operated throughout different epochs and in diverse production practices (particularly the medieval cycle plays, the English early modern theatres, and the American stock companies), I contend that those who took on the functions of proto-casting director were, contrary to today’s perception of the casting director as “below-the-line” labor, usually the production’s most important creative personnel. Turning to the twentieth century, chapter two, “The Company Casting Director,” argues that in-house casting employees working during the golden age of Broadway, classical Hollywood, and early television eras exerted more creative influence within their respective companies than industrial scholarship allows. Seen as what one film historian calls “low-level decision-makers,” casting directors rarely figure in industry studies because these analyses typically focus on directors or producers. Archival documents such as memoirs, memos, and casting idea lists indicate, however, that casting personnel were not simply clerical workers, but, rather, by contributing to hiring decisions, among those who helped shape their respective companies’ aesthetic vision. My project’s third chapter, “The Independent Casting Director,” brings women into the historical record by explaining the rise of the female casting director and the concomitant gendering of the profession. The chapter’s first half argues that examining the major entertainment industries concurrently reveals that media scholars have profoundly misunderstood the rise of female labor in entertainment occupations such as casting. By focusing on Los Angeles and the classical Hollywood studio system, critics ignored the more permeable divisions of labor that existed in New York-based theatre and early television. The looser organizational structure of these two industries allowed women to pursue entertainment careers and produce culture on the east coast in ways they could not on the west. Also concentrating on gender, the latter half of this chapter contends that the disproportionate number of women who entered casting in the 1960s-70s led scholars, journalists, and industry professionals to devalue the profession by associating it with stereotypically feminine traits. Arlie Russell Hochschild’s theories of “emotional labor” and Vicki Mayer’s media scholarship on “nurturing,” accommodating feminized workers apply to common observations about casting directors. Whether or not casting is a service profession, certainly casting directors (male and female) perceive it as such and often use feminized language to describe what they do. Yet casting requires skills typically seen as masculine, which many industry studies theorists argue the role of decision-maker demands. For example, with production funding increasingly scarce in today’s weak economic climate, casting directors often serve as de facto producers by attaching talent to theatre and film projects to secure the necessary financing. The funding for the Oscar-winning Crash (Haggis, 2004) was cast-contingent, and that movie’s casting directors, Sarah Halley Finn and Randi Hiller, received credit for getting the film made. Chapter four, “The Digital-Age Casting Director,” explores the digital revolution’s impact on today’s casting practices. As I trace casting offices’ increased use of digital media to locate and audition actors, I argue that digital devices give casting directors more control over the decision-making process. Digital cameras and video-sharing websites, for example, allow casting directors to edit most auditions and regulate the content upon which many hiring decisions are now based. My work on casting culminates by examining the digital era’s implications for casting’s future. I contend that even those digital special effects such as vactors that could potentially limit the casting director’s creative input are unlikely to do so as most CG-manipulated characters are still modeled on live performers.U of I OnlyU of I Only Extension request made by author via Graduate Colleg

    Metaphors of London fog, smoke and mist in Victorian and Edwardian Art and Literature

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    Julian Wolfreys has argued that after 1850 writers employed stock images of the city without allowing them to transform their texts. This thesis argues, on the contrary, that metaphorical uses of London fog were complex and subtle during the Victorian and Edwardian periods, at least until 1914. Fog represented, in particular, formlessness and the dissolution of boundaries. Examining the idea of fog in literature, verse, newspaper accounts and journal articles, as well as in the visual arts, as part of a common discourse about London and the state of its inhabitants, this thesis charts how the metaphorical appropriation of this idea changed over time. Four of Dickens's novels are used to track his use of fog as part of a discourse of the natural and unnatural in individual and society, identifying it with London in progressively more negative terms. Visual representations of fog by Constable, Turner, Whistler, Monet, Markino, O'Connor, Roberts and Wyllie and Coburn showed an increasing readiness to engage with this discourse. Social tensions in the city in the 1880s were articulated in art as well as in fiction. Authors like Hay and Barr showed the destruction of London by its fog because of its inhabitants' supposed degeneracy. As the social threat receded, apocalyptic scenarios gave way to a more optimistic view in the work of Owen and others. Henry James used fog as a metaphorical representation of the boundaries of gendered behaviour in public, and the problems faced by women who crossed them. The dissertation also examines fog and individual transgression, in novels and short stories by Lowndes, Stevenson, Conan Doyle and Joseph Conrad. After 1914, fog was no more than a crude signifier of Victorian London in literature, film and, later, television, deployed as a cliche instead of the subtle metaphorical idea discussed in this thesis

    Building body identities - exploring the world of female bodybuilders

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    This thesis explores how female bodybuilders seek to develop and maintain a viable sense of self despite being stigmatized by the gendered foundations of what Erving Goffman (1983) refers to as the 'interaction order'; the unavoidable presentational context in which identities are forged during the course of social life. Placed in the context of an overview of the historical treatment of women's bodies, and a concern with the development of bodybuilding as a specific form of body modification, the research draws upon a unique two year ethnographic study based in the South of England, complemented by interviews with twenty-six female bodybuilders, all of whom live in the U.K. By mapping these extraordinary women's lives, the research illuminates the pivotal spaces and essential lived experiences that make up the female bodybuilder. Whilst the women appear to be embarking on an 'empowering' radical body project for themselves, the consequences of their activity remains culturally ambivalent. This research exposes the 'Janus-faced' nature of female bodybuilding, exploring the ways in which the women negotiate, accommodate and resist pressures to engage in more orthodox and feminine activities and appearances

    Towards a sociology of conspiracy theories: An investigation into conspiratorial thinking on Dönmes

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    This thesis investigates the social and political significance of conspiracy theories, which has been an academically neglected topic despite its historical relevance. The academic literature focuses on the methodology, social significance and political impacts of these theories in a secluded manner and lacks empirical analyses. In response, this research provides a comprehensive theoretical framework for conspiracy theories by considering their methodology, political impacts and social significance in the light of empirical data. Theoretically, the thesis uses Adorno's semi-erudition theory along with Girardian approach. It proposes that conspiracy theories are methodologically semi-erudite narratives, i.e. they are biased in favour of a belief and use reason only to prove it. It suggests that conspiracy theories appear in times of power vacuum and provide semi-erudite cognitive maps that relieve alienation and ontological insecurities of people and groups. In so doing, they enforce social control over their audience due to their essentialist, closed-to-interpretation narratives. In order to verify the theory, the study analyses empirically the social and political significance of conspiracy theories about the Dönme community in Turkey. The analysis comprises interviews with conspiracy theorists, conspiracy theory readers and political parties, alongside a frame analysis of the popular conspiracy theory books on Dönmes. These confirm the theoretical framework by showing that the conspiracy theories are fed by the ontological insecurities of Turkish society. Hence, conspiracy theorists, most readers and some political parties respond to their own ontological insecurities and political frustrations through scapegoating Dönmes. Consequently, this work shows that conspiracy theories are important symptoms of society, which, while relieving ontological insecurities, do not provide politically prolific narratives

    The Professional Identity of Doctors who Provide Abortions: A Sociological Investigation

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    Abortion is a medicalised problem in England and Wales, where the law places doctors at the centre of legal provision and puts doctors in control of who has an abortion. However, the sex-selection abortion scandal of 2012 presented a very real threat to 'abortion doctors', when the medical profession's values and practices were questioned in the media, society and by Members of Parliament. Doctors found themselves at the centre of a series of claims that stated doctors were acting both illegally and unethically, driven by profit rather than patient needs. Yet, the perspectives of those doctors who provide abortions has been under-researched; this thesis aims to fill that gap by examining the beliefs and values of this group of doctors. Early chapters highlight the ambiguous position of the abortion provider in Britain, where doctors are seen as a collective group of professionals motivated by medical dominance and medical autonomy. They outline how this position is then questioned and contested, with doctors being presented as unethical. By studying abortion at the macro-, meso- and micro-levels, this thesis seeks to better understand the values of the 'abortion doctor', and how these levels shape the work and experiences of abortion providers in England and Wales. This thesis thus addresses the question: 'What do abortion doctors' accounts of their professional work suggest about the contemporary dynamics of the medicalisation of abortion in Britain?'. It investigates the research question using a qualitative methodological approach: face-to-face and telephone interviews were conducted with 47 doctors who provide abortions in England and Wales. The findings from this empirical study show how doctors' values are linked to how they view the 'normalisation of abortion'. At the macro-level doctors, openly resisted the medicalisation of abortion through the position ascribed to them by the legal framework, yet at the meso-level doctors construct an identity where normalising abortion is based on further medicalising services. Finally, at the micro-level, the ambiguous position of the abortion provider is further identified in terms of being both a proud provider and a stigmatised individual. This thesis shows that while the existing medicalisation literature has some utility, it has limited explanatory power when investigating the problem of abortion. The thesis thus provides some innovative insights into the relevance and value of medicalisation through a comprehensive study on doctors' values, beliefs and practices

    The temporality of rhetoric: the spatialization of time in modern criticism

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    Every conception of criticism conceals a notion of time which informs the manner in which the critic conceives of history, representation and criticism itself. This thesis reveals the philosophies of time inherent in certain key modern critical concepts: allegory, irony and the sublime. Each concept opens a breach in time, a disruption of chronology. In each case this gap or aporia is emphatically closed, elided or denied. Taking the philosophy of time elaborated by Giorgio Agamben as an introductory proposition, my argument turns in Chapter One to the allegorical temporality which Walter Benjamin sees as the time of photography. The second chapter examines the aesthetics of the sublime as melancholic or mournful untimeliness. In Chapter Three, Paul de Man's conception of irony provides an exemplary instance of the denial of this troubling temporal predicament. In opposition to the foreclosure of the disturbing temporalities of criticism, history and representation, the thesis proposes a fundamental rethinking of the philosophy of time as it relates to these categories of reflection. In a reading of an inaugural meditation on the nature of time, and in examining certain key contemporary philosophical and critical texts, I argue for a critical attendance to that which eludes those modes of thought that attempt to map time as a recognizable and essentially spatial field. The Confessions of Augustine provide, in the fourth chapter, a model for thinking through the problems set up earlier: Augustine affords us, precisely, a means of conceiving of the gap or the interim. In the final chapter, this concept is developed with reference to the criticism of Arnold and Eliot, the fiction of Virginia Woolf and the philosophy of cinema derived from Deleuze and Lyotard. In conclusion, the philosophical implications of the thesis are placed in relation to a conception of the untimeliness of death

    Balancing the urban stomach: public health, food selling and consumption in London, c. 1558-1640

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    Until recently, public health histories have been predominantly shaped by medical and scientific perspectives, to the neglect of their wider social, economic and political contexts. These medically-minded studies have tended to present broad, sweeping narratives of health policy's explicit successes or failures, often focusing on extraordinary periods of epidemic disease viewed from a national context. This approach is problematic, particularly in studies of public health practice prior to 1800. Before the rise of modern scientific medicine, public health policies were more often influenced by shared social, cultural, economic and religious values which favoured maintaining hierarchy, stability and concern for 'the common good'. These values have frequently been overlooked by modern researchers. This has yielded pessimistic assessments of contemporary sanitation, implying that local authorities did not care about or prioritise the health of populations. Overly medicalised perspectives have further restricted historians' investigation and use of source material, their interpretation of multifaceted and sometimes contested cultural practices such as fasting, and their examination of habitual - and not just extraordinary - health actions. These perspectives have encouraged a focus on reactive - rather than preventative - measures. This thesis contributes to a growing body of research that expands our restrictive understandings of pre-modern public health. It focuses on how public health practices were regulated, monitored and expanded in later Tudor and early Stuart London, with a particular focus on consumption and food-selling. Acknowledging the fundamental public health value of maintaining urban foodways, it investigates how contemporaries sought to manage consumption, food production waste, and vending practices in the early modern City's wards and parishes. It delineates the practical and political distinctions between food and medicine, broadly investigates the activities, reputations of and correlations between London's guild and itinerant food vendors and licensed and irregular medical practitioners, traces the directions in which different kinds of public health policy filtered up or down, and explores how policies were enacted at a national and local level. Finally, it compares and contrasts habitual and extraordinary public health regulations, with a particular focus on how perceptions of and actual food shortages, paired with the omnipresent threat of disease, impacted broader aspects of civic life

    Metodología de intervención para trabajar ODS. Educación a través de las artes

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    La Agenda 2030 presenta 17 Objetivos de Desarrollo Sostenible (ODS), con sus metas e indicadores universales que los países miembros de la ONU emplean para enmarcar sus políticas. Entre las metas del ODS 4 “educación de calidad” encontramos: “asegurar que todos los alumnos adquieran los conocimientos teóricos y prácticos necesarios para promover el desarrollo sostenible, entre otras cosas mediante la educación para el desarrollo sostenible y los estilos de vida sostenibles, los derechos humanos, la igualdad de género, la promoción de una cultura de paz y no violencia, la ciudadanía mundial y la valoración de la diversidad cultural y la contribución de la cultura al desarrollo sostenible”. La educación, se considera el motor de la Agenda 2030 porque, además de representar el centro del ODS 4, desempeña también un papel notable en la implementación de los demás, mejorando su alcance y efectividad. Así pues, entre las disciplinas que sustentan este trabajo se escogió la Educación para el Desarrollo Sostenible y la Ciudadanía Global como marco de acción y punto de partida en la formación de los ciudadanos de un futuro viable, equitativo y habitable. Se continuó investigando las oportunidades del desarrollo de la Competencia Intercultural en las relaciones humanas, aquello que diferencia a unas personas de otras puede aportar al conjunto de la sociedad y cómo la educación permitiría su aprovechamiento. Con todo ello, se planteó el marco didáctico de interacción en el cual se implementó la interculturalidad en el ejercicio educativo. Se estudió así el poder de las artes como medio de motivación e inspiración a la hora de transmitir de la manera más eficaz posible los valores considerados más arriba. El objetivo del presente estudio se centra en demostrar el potencial de las artes para fomentar las competencias comunicativas, sociales, interculturales, emocionales, de ciudadanía y sostenibilidad. Para ello, se ha realizado una investigación aplicada que deriva en una propuesta concreta de intervención con un programa educativo destinado a la enseñanza de lenguas, tanto primera como extranjera, en distintos niveles de la educación formal en Mali y en España, aplicando un método holístico basado en el paradigma interpretativo. A través de la pintura, la literatura y el cine, se plantean una serie de actividades ideadas para crear un entorno educativo integrador, favorecer el empoderamiento del alumnado y promover el pensamiento crítico, la empatía, la resiliencia, la comunicación, la cooperación y la educación intercultural, como competencias esenciales para la consecución de los 17 ODS, la construcción de un mundo transcultural sostenible y el desarrollo de una ciudadanía global preparada para los retos del siglo XXI. En la metodología de este proceso educativo innovador, multidisciplinar, flexible y adaptable, se ha empleado un análisis del proceso de investigación para monitorizarlo adecuadamente (DAFO). Cada una de las propuestas presenta una recogida de datos cualitativos (observación, rúbricas) y cuantitativos (encuestas, entrevistas) y se ofrece un análisis de contraste de los resultados finales. Con todo, se espera facilitar la exigente tarea que supone hacer consciente a la sociedad de base (desde la misma infancia; desde los niveles más bajos de la misma y en todos los niveles de la educación formal) de en qué consisten los ODS y su relevancia para hacer de todas las personas corresponsables directas en su consecución para garantizar un futuro sostenible para toda la ciudadanía global.The 2030 Agenda presents 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), with their universal targets and indicators that UN member countries use to frame their policies. Among the targets of SDG 4 “quality education,” we find the one that seeks: “to ensure that all students acquire the theoretical and practical knowledge necessary to promote sustainable development, among other things through education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, the promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, world citizenship and the appreciation of cultural diversity and the contribution of culture to sustainable development”. Education is considered the engine of the 2030 Agenda because, in addition to representing the centre of SDG 4, it also plays a notable role in the implementation of the others, improving their scope and effectiveness. Among the disciplines that support this research, Education for Sustainable Development and Global Citizenship sets the framework for action and represents a starting point in the formation of citizens for a viable, equitable and habitable future. Global citizenship implies human relations and those and intrinsically shaped by culture. Intercultural Education and, more specifically, the development of Intercultural Competence needed to be considered. What differentiates some people from others can contribute to society as a whole and education is the means to explore and understand. For the design of a didactic framework of interaction, the power of the arts was studied as a means of motivation and inspiration when transmitting the values considered above in the most effective way possible. The objective of this study focuses on proving the potential of the arts to promote communicative, social, intercultural, emotional, citizenship and sustainability skills. For this, the theoretical research derived in a concrete intervention proposal with an educational program in language teaching, both first and foreign languages, at different levels of formal education in Mali and Spain, applying a holistic method based on the interpretive paradigm. Through painting, literature and cinema, a series of activities were designed to create an inclusive educational environment, favour the empowerment of students and promote critical thinking, empathy, resilience, communication, cooperation and intercultural education, as essential skills for the achievement of the 17 SDGs, the construction of a sustainable transcultural world and the development of global citizenship prepared for the challenges of the 21st century. In the methodology of this innovative, multidisciplinary, flexible and adaptable educational process, an analysis of the research process has been used to adequately monitor it (SWOT). Each of the proposals presents a collection of qualitative data (observation, rubrics) and quantitative data (surveys, interviews) and contrast analysis of the final results is offered. All in all, it is expected to facilitate the demanding task of making basic society aware (from childhood itself, from its lowest levels and at all levels of formal education) of what the SDGs consist of and their relevance to make all people directly co-responsible in its achievement to guarantee a sustainable future for all global citizens

    Talking about Ann Quin: An Interview with Claire-Louise Bennett

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    Claire-Louise Bennett grew up in Wiltshire and studied literature and drama at the University of Roehampton before moving to Ireland where she worked in and studied theatre for several years. In 2013 she was awarded the inaugural White Review Short Story Prize and went on to complete her debut book, Pond, which was published by The Stinging Fly (Ireland) and Fitzcarraldo Editions (UK) in 2015 and by Riverhead (US) in 2016. Pond was shortlisted for the Dylan Thomas Prize in 2016. Her fiction and essays have appeared in numerous magazines and journals, and she also writes about art and is a frequent contributor to frieze. Her novel, Checkout 19, was published by Jonathan Cape in August 2021. In between finishing Pond and writing Checkout 19, she discovered Quin’s work. The novel directly engages with it and in this interview she discusses why Quin’s work is so significant for her own

    The applied psychology of addictive orientations : studies in a 12-step treatment context.

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    The clinical data for the studies was collected at The PROMIS Recovery Centre, a Minnesota Model treatmentc entre for addictions,w hich encouragesth e membership and use of the 12 step Anonymous Fellowships, and is abstinence based. The area of addiction is contextualised in a review chapter which focuses on research relating to the phenomenon of cross addiction. A study examining the concept of "addictive orientations" in male and female addicts is described, which develops a study conductedb y StephensonM, aggi, Lefever, & Morojele (1995). This presents study found a four factor solution which appeared to be subdivisions of the previously found Hedonism and Nurturance factors. Self orientated nurturance (both food dimensions, shopping and caffeine), Other orientated nurturance (both compulsive helping dimensions and work), Sensation seeking hedonism (Drugs, prescription drugs, nicotine and marginally alcohol), and Power related hedonism (Both relationship dimensions, sex and gambling. This concept of "addictive orientations" is further explored in a non-clinical population, where again a four factor solution was found, very similar to that in the clinical population. This was thought to indicate that in terms of addictive orientation a pattern already exists in this non-clinical population and that consideration should be given to why this is the case. These orientations are examined in terms of gender differences. It is suggested that the differences between genders reflect power-related role relationships between the sexes. In order to further elaborate the significance and meaning behind these orientations, the next two chapters look at the contribution of personality variables and how addictive orientations relate to psychiatric symptomatology. Personality variables were differentially, and to a considerable extent predictably involved with the four factors for both males and females.Conscientiousness as positively associated with "Other orientated Nurturance" and negatively associated with "Sensation seeking hedonism" (particularly for men). Neuroticism had a particularly strong association with the "Self orientated Nurturance" factor in the female population. More than twice the symptomatology variance was explained by the factor scores for females than it was for males. The most important factorial predictors for psychiatric symptomatology were the "Power related hedonism" factor for males, and "Self oriented nurturance" for females. The results are discussed from theoretical and treatment perspectives
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