Love Thy Neighbour, I Claudius and Thunderbirds: TV conference on 8 April

Posted by mjs76 at Mar 16, 2011 03:46 PM |
When a conference is called The Politics of Television Space and includes programme items on Doctor Who, Fireball XL5 and Quatermass, you could be forgiven for thinking that it’s some sort of sci-fi convention. But you would be wrong, because the theme is studio space, not outer space.

The one-day event on 8 April is the first symposium to emerge from a four-year research project called Spaces of Television – Production, site and style which launched last summer. The aim is to analyse the use of spaces - interior and exterior, studio and location - in British TV drama produced between 1955 and 1994.

A collaboration between the Universities of Reading, Leicester and Glamorgan, 'Spaces of Television' benefits from the expertise of Co-Investigator Professor James Chapman from our Department of History of Art and Film, and there is also a PhD student based here. The project is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council.

'The Politics of Television Space' brings together academics, authors and historians to discuss such weighty topics as:

  • Corridors of power: the depiction of the House of Commons in television drama
  • Imperial Spaces: I, Claudius and constructing the Eternal City at White City
  • Modernity and spatial politics: Gerry Anderson’s puppet science fictions, and
  • 'Light entertainment’ as contested socio-political space: audience and institutional responses to Love Thy Neighbour (1972-76)

The Keynote Speaker will be Dr Peter Hutchings, Professor of Film Studies at Northumbria University whose books include Hammer and Beyond: The British Horror Film (1993), Dracula: British Film Guide (2003) and The Historical Dictionary of Horror Cinema (2008). He will speak on ‘Dangerous Spaces: Studios, video and the 1970s psychological thriller’.

Two other guest speakers are screenwriter Howard Schuman (Rock Follies, Small World, Selling Hitler) and director Piers Haggard (The Quatermass Conclusion, Pennies from Heaven, Blood on Satan’s Claw). Schuman and Haggard both have extensive CVs that stretch back to classic TV series such as Armchair Theatre.

The one-day symposium takes place in the Attenborough Seminar Block from 10.00am to 6.00pm on Friday 8 April 2011. Registration is £20 (concessions £15) including lunch, and bookings must be made by Friday 1 April.

For more information contact Professor James Chapman,