DE-WESTERNIZING HORROR CINEMA: Upcoming Conference At King's College London

The two-day event will focus on the importance of transnational horror.

By Amber T · @hornbloodfire · October 4, 2022, 4:08 PM EDT
De-Westernizing Horror Cinema

London horror fans, get this one in your diary: De-Westernizing Horror Cinema, an upcoming academic horror conference hosted by King’s College London on the 31st of October and the 1st of November.

The conference will see a huge number of horror scholars, writers, lecturers and more come together to present an exciting discussion on the significance of horror cinema from around the world, and the importance of reshaping our view of horror with other countries and cultures in mind.

Here’s some background information on the event, organised by Dr Iain Robert Smith, Dr Zubair Shafiq, and Dr Alice Haylett Bryan:

In 2012, Saër Maty Bâ and Will Higbee published their necessary and urgent intervention, De-Westernizing Film Studies. The principle aim of their collection was to “consider what forms a challenge to the enduring vision of film as a medium – and film studies as a discipline – modelled on ‘Western’ ideologies, theoretical and historical frameworks, critical perspectives as well as institutional and artistic practices, might take today.

By interrogating the dominance of the West within existing theorisations of horror cinema, we will ask how a transnational approach to the genre within Asia might help us work towards the broader goal of de-Westernizing horror film studies.

Contributors from across the UK and around the world will present a selection of panels over the two days, focusing on (frankly, amazing sounding) topics such as 'Hybridisation and Localisation of the Western Zombies in Thai Films' and 'Japanese Gothic in the Age of Animist Capitalism'

Speakers include keynote speaker Dr Meheli Sen (Haunting Bollywood: Gender, Genre and the Supernatural in Hindi Commercial Cinema), Priyanka Verma (University of Leeds), Adam Knee (Lasalle College of the Arts, Singapore), Krista Amira Calvo (Northumbria University) and many more.

Dr Alison Peirse, author of Women Make Horror, will lead a roundtable discussion with participants of MAI’s Doing Women’s (Global) (Horror) Film History, a ten–month training programme for critics focusing on women horror filmmakers in the Global South.

The conference will be held in-person, but don't worry if you're outside of London and still want to attend: online passes are also available at a discounted rate to allow for international access and participation.

Check out the schedule and register for De-Westernizing Horror Cinema here!