Professor Shelley Stamp (Film + Digital Media, University of California, Santa Cruz)
Professor Joao Luiz Vieira (Cinema and Audiovisual Studies, Universidade Federal Fluminese, Niterói)
At HoMER 2019 in Nassau, the conference explored ways of developing a more theoretical and methodological grounding for New Cinema History research. Since emerging as a vibrant field of research in the early 2000s, New Cinema History has sought to distinguish itself from Film History by ‘shift[ing] its focus away from the content of films’, in order to examine cinema as a ‘site of social and cultural exchange’ (Maltby 2011: 3). However, in recent years there have been calls to reconsider the significance of the film itself within New Cinema History research. For the Homer 2020 conference INTEGRATING TRADITIONS, we would like to continue answering that call: as cinema historians, we have traditionally drawn on frameworks and methodologies found in fields such as Social Geography, Economics, and Psychology, but how do we integrate these approaches with those of Film History and Film Studies more broadly? Furthermore, in order to become ‘methodologically more mature’ as a discipline, we must also reflect on how we approach comparative research as an essential part of our studies (Biltereyst and Meers 2016: 25). Several empirical research projects have already used these methods within New Cinema History, comparing the cinema-going experience across cultural and geographical contexts; however, still lacking is the integration of productive methodologies from Film Studies.
The aim of HoMER 2020 is to investigate how the traditional approaches of Film Studies – as well as those disciplines that have shaped NCH to date – can be productively integrated.