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Call For Papers: “At The Limit,” NYU’s Cinema Studies Student Academic Conference

At the Limit: Borders, Margins, and Walls

Sentiments in this period of fugue after the United States elected such a polarizing president have escalated to the point that many of us are feeling that we have reached our limit. As students we are thinking about borders at a time when they seem more intransigent than ever. Just as we are unavoidably concerned with the hard, absolute lines that have allowed such a demagogue to win the US election, so are we contemplating such critically divisive global events as the human cost of the refugee crisis in the Mediterranean, the limitations on migration implicit in Brexit, and the continual renegotiation of sovereignties in the South China Sea. Moments of crises such as these also open up a reconsideration of borders within the field of Cinema Studies. Be it the increasingly porous distinction between oft-separated notions of “cinema” and “media,” the consistent border-questions provoked in discussions of genre, or foundational distinctions to be made in film theory, now seems a time to pause and rethink established material and immaterial boundaries.

This year’s student conference works to magnify the border as a geopolitical, aesthetic, and theoretical site to resist impending policy that would disable movement across such borders. In this regard, we invite border-crossing papers and multimedia presentations that enable cultural and disciplinary exchange.

NYU Cinema Studies calls for submissions including, but not limited to, the following topics for our annual student conference taking place February 24-26, 2017:

  • Infrastructures of the border(scape): fences, walls, airports and seaports
  • Limited collections and archival borders
  • Limitations of the human and the body; sexuality and identity
  • Border films, cross-cultural filmmaking and visual culture
  • Boundaries of genre and mode
  • Contested or expanding sovereignties
  • Spatial limits, contingencies, bounded time
  • Liminal spaces and conditions, hybridity
  • Atopic or heterotopic places
  • Limit cases and scientific method
  • Interface as border, cross- and trans-media exchange
  • Translation across conceptual boundaries and theoretical particularities

Please send abstracts of approximately 350-words with 100-word bios to the conference committee at by 22 December 2016. Please direct all questions/queries to

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