Call for Papers

Media Mutations 8. A Cognitive Approach to TV Series.
Bologna, Dipartimento delle Arti, Salone Marescotti, May 25th and 26th 2016

Organized by the University of Bologna, in collaboration with the Society for Cognitive Studies of the Moving Image and the research project Theoretical Innovation Strategies in the Analysis of Narration in Television Series.
Confirmed keynote speakers: Jason Mittell (Middlebury College), Jaak Panksepp and Anesa Miller (Washington’s State University) and Hannah Chapelle Wojciehowski (The University of Texas at Austin).
Programme committee: Margrethe Bruun Vaage (University of Kent), Michele Guerra (Università di Parma), Veronica Innocenti (Università di Bologna), and Héctor J. Pérez (Universitat Politècnica de València).

The 8th edition of the Media Mutations International Conference is entitled “A Cognitive Approach to TV Series”. Some recent studies have begun developing a cognitive approach to TV series, but nevertheless much is yet unexplored. This conference aims at aiding this nascent field in firmly establishing itself as an interdisciplinary approach in media studies. We encourage papers on topics such as the nature and the role of emotions in TV series, the cognitive processes elicited by serial narrative, the viewers’ participation and paratextual creation, and finally the relationship between cognitive TV studies and other relevant theoretical approaches such as that of narrative ecosystems and so-called embodied narratology.

Media Mutations 8 encourages proposals on the following subjects:

• The cognitive, affective and moral dimensions of viewers’ engagement with characters in TV series (e.g., compared to stand-alone artwork such as film)
• The role played by memory in TV series engagement
• The varieties of emotional experience with serial narratives
• Cognitive explorations of participatory experiences in serial narratives (e.g., engagement through paratexts)
• Text vs. paratext – author intentions vs. audience creation
• Philosophical and theoretical investigations of contemporary TV series (e.g., complex TV; narrative ecosystems; vast narratives)
• Cognitive approaches to the process of construction and development of narrative ecosystems
• Narration and Embodiment (embodied and affective aspects of stylistic features)

The official languages of the conference are English and Italian.

Abstracts (250-1000 words for 20-minute talks) should be sent to [at] by January 5th 2016. Please attach a brief biography (maximum 150 words) and an optional selected bibliography (up to ten titles) relevant to the conference topics.

Notification of acceptance will be sent to proponents between 1.-15. February.

A registration fee will be requested after notification of acceptance (€40 for speakers; admission to the conference is free for students). A selection of papers will be included in an edited collection to be submitted to an international publisher.

This Conference is financially supported by: Centro Dipartimentale La Soffitta and Dipartimento delle Arti, Università di Bologna; Research project Theoretical Innovation Strategies in the Analysis of Narration in Television Series (CSO2014-51872-R), funded by the Spanish Government.