Call for Articles: A special issue of SERIES – International journal of TV series narratives

“Locations in Television Drama Series”

Guest Editors: Anne Marit Waade and John Lynch

This special issue is dedicated to the analysis of the increasingly significant role of location as a key element in television drama. In recent years, the popularity of serial television has progressively been tied to the expanded use of location as a central element in productions, both as setting and as part of a wider audience engagement driven by social media and marketing. Popular television series and brands as for example Game of Thrones, Sex and the city, Nordic Noir, The Fall, Cities and The Wire illustrate how location has become a significant production value. This emerging field of research defined here as ‘location studies’ represents an interdisciplinary approach to the study of television series. It is pertinent at this point to bring together examples of work from a range of scholars and to usefully mark out potential lines of development within the subject. Location has so far mainly been considered as a practical term in film and television productions.

Locations, television places and production design have experienced very little academic attention in contrast to, for example, narratives, visual style, genre and acting. Location in a television drama production involves persons and decisions both above the line (creative and financial decision makers) and below the line (technical and practical personal), as well as institutional and economic conditions outside the production team, for example funding, production facilities, public service commitments, target groups (Blandford and McElroy, 2011). Les Roberts (2012) introduces the idea of cinematic geography as an interdisciplinary approach that reflects upon the relation between the film or television drama series and the actual city, the geographical place, and demonstrates the complex interplay between respectively economic, artistic and practical interests that are at stake when it comes to audio-visual productions. Roberts¹ work is a contribution to a more overall and increasing interest in the relation between media and geography (Couldry and McCarthy 2004; Falkheimer & Jansson, 2006; Eichner & Waade, 2015). More recently, there are works on, for instance, The Wire and the city as a character (Gjelsvik, 2010), BBC’s Wallander and the glocal (McCabe 2015) and landscapes in Nordic Noir (Creeber 2014). Location studies reflects upon the relationship between the places and the television drama series, considering aspects such as the aesthetic and narrative aspects of the places in the series, how media represents and brands places (city, nations, regions), how the site of production and the physical conditions influence the series, and how media production is seen as valuable creative industry and regional development to attract investors, inhabits and visitors. As part of the glocalisation process, the specific places become commodities with significant values, both cultural and economic in a globalised world. The recent interest for places in the creative industry in general (Comunian et al. 2010) and in television drama in particular illustrates this very well.

The aim of this issue is to highlight research that engages with the multi-discipline and multi-method approach to location studies in television series. Papers may be theoretical and/or empirical in nature and all submissions will be considered; particular areas of interest include:

  1. The development of location from practical role in production to significant social value tied to cultural issues of place and meaning
  2. Location studies and methodologies of empirical research
  3. Theorising the relationship between location and the dramaturgical function
  4. The relation between physical, mediated and imagined places
  5. Televisual places: Reflecting on the relation between production design, exterior and interior, location and landscapes, respectively
  6. The role of regional commissioning and production agencies and emerging collaborative practices
  7. Location as commodity and production value in television series
  8. The politics of location as signifiers of changing landscapes in a globalised media culture
  9. Location as site of screen tourism and fan-based engagements

Submit your abstract: 
Submit your abstract to seriesjournal.org@gmail.com. The deadline is May 1st 2016.
We can only accept abstracts/articles in English.
Author Guidelines: http://series.unibo.it/about/submissions#authorGuidelines

Time line:
May 1st 2016:    Deadline abstracts
Submit to seriesjournal.org@gmail.com 
June 1st, 2016: Feedback to the authors
October 1st:       Deadline for submitting the article
Submit to seriesjournal.org@gmail.com
December 1st: Review process, deadline for the reviewers
February 1st:     Deadline for the final version of the article
Submit to seriesjournal.org@gmail.com
May 2016: The articles are ready to be published.

Contact persons:
Anne Marit Waade is Associate Professor, School of Culture and Communication, at Aarhus University, Denmark. E-mail: amwaade@dac.au.dk
John Lynch is Senior Lecturer in Media and Communication at Karlstad University, Sweden. E-mail: john.lynch@kau.se

SERIES website: http://series.unibo.it E-mail: seriesjournal.org@gmail.com

 

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