• Echo of dreams

      Owens, Allan; Green, Naomi; University of Chester, NEC Katayanagi Institute (2015-04)
      The Echo of Dreams Pre-text allows for consideration of sudden changes in life, the unpredictable , unforeseen and unknowable to create a space for the exchange of such understandings and to allow for a celebration of the human spirit in the face of loss
    • Elvis: Roots, Image, Comeback, Phenomenon

      Duffett, Mark; University of Chester (Equinox Press, 2020-04-07)
      Elvis Presley remains the single most important figure in twentieth century popular music. To many commentators, however, he has simply embodied the benefits and problems of uncritically embracing capitalism. By 2005 the ‘Memphis Flash’ sold over a billion records worldwide, yet his cultural significance cannot be measured by these extraordinary sales figures alone. He cannot quite be reduced to a placeholder for the contradictions of commerce. As the most prominent performer of the rock’n’roll era, then as a charismatic global superstar, Elvis fundamentally challenged the established relationship between White and Black culture, drew attention to the social needs of women and young people, and promoted the value of Southern creativity. He functioned as a bridge figure between folk roots and high modernity, and in the process became a controversial symbol of American unity. Elvis interprets the image and music of Elvis Presley to reveal how they have evolved to construct a particularly appealing and powerful myth. Following broad contours of Presley’s rollercoaster career, the book uses a range of analytical frames to challenge established perspectives on an icon. Its shows that the controversy around Elvis has effectively tested how far a concern for social equality could be articulated through the marketplace, and ultimately challenged how popular music itself should be assessed.
    • Elvis’ Gospel music: Between the secular and the spiritual?

      Duffett, Mark; University of Chester (MDPI, 2015-03-09)
      Do fans sanctify their heroes? In the past, I have argued that Elvis fandom is not a neo-religious practice but that attention to a modified version of Durkheim’s theory of religion can, nevertheless, help to explain it as a form of social interaction. I take that argument further here, first by revealing the ethical and analytical advantages of neo-Durkheimian theory, then by pitting this theory against three aspects of Elvis’ sincere engagement with gospel music. Elvis Presley won three Grammy awards for his gospel albums and was the musician who did most to bring the gospel quartet tradition to the mainstream. His eclectic personal ties to spirituality and religion have become a focus of debate within his fan culture. They offer a set of discursive resources through which to explain the emotional impact and social influence of his music. If star musicians are positioned as centres of attention, what happens when they use their privileged position in the spotlight to offer a “spiritual” message?
    • Emanuel Azenberg’s Life in Theatre: ‘Happiness Is Equilibrium. Shift Your Weight’

      Ellis, Sarah T.; University of Chester (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017-05-03)
      Working first for David Merrick and then Alexander Cohen, Emanuel Azenberg (b. 1934) has persevered into the twenty-first century as one of the last independent producers. He has also brought his practical experience into the classroom as a visiting professor at Duke University.
    • Emotional Fusebox: Presence, absence and sibling loss in Adult Life Skills

      Barnett, Katie; University of Chester (2018-09-05)
      “Are you still a twin if your twin is dead?” This is the question that Anna (Jodie Whittaker) poses as she struggles to come to terms with the death of her brother Billy and her—their—imminent 30th birthday. The question structures much of Rachel Tunnard’s 2016 film Adult Life Skills, as Anna attempts to rebuild a life around the gaping absence of Billy and their shared childhood. Anna is challenged by those around her to both ‘let go’ of her brother and ‘grow up’. The film treats these not as parallel problems but, as it were, twin problems: one is inextricably linked to the other. As such, Tunnard’s film addresses the place and function of sibling relationships in adult life. In sociology, psychology and developmental studies, sibling relationships are often perceived as being primarily a facet of childhood, a lateral bond whose significance diminishes into adulthood. Adult Life Skills appears to give space to the adult brother-sister relationship and yet complicates this by erasing one of the pair; such a relationship is only ever figured, on screen, as one that twins presence with absence. Likewise, the narrative drives towards a point at which Anna might embark on a romantic relationship with a man. Indeed, Anna’s mother (Lorraine Ashbourne) measures her daughter’s grief by her willingness to engage with members of the opposite sex. There remains a sense that Anna would always have to ‘let go’ of Billy (absent or not), to avoid expending her energy on what amounts to the ‘wrong’ heterosocial pairing. This paper examines Adult Life Skills as one example of a recent film that tackles a young adult woman’s loss of her brother (see also Into the Wild [2007], Personal Shopper [2016]), and explores the ways in which a close brother-sister relationship is persistently figured through absence rather than presence.
    • The Enduring Power of Comic Strips

      Grennan, Simon; University of Chester
      This chapter argues that the power of comics resides in the historic appearance and modulation of the affective possibilities of the comic strip register. On this basis, it explores how this power is realized in popular visual literature, which derives from, develops and transforms the historic contingencies of reading. Analysing examples in the work of Leo Baxendale, Michiko Hasegawa, Kaz, Christophe Blaine, R. J. Ivankovic, Catherine Anyango, Seth Tobocman, Keiji Nakazawa, Debbie Drechsler and Nicola Streeten, it describes a number of ways in which comics engage with and manipulate these historic contingencies, discussing the use of comedy, satire and parody and the development of political protest and life writing as sub-genres that are fundamentally engaged with readers’ habits and expectations. Finally, the chapter focuses on the opportunities that visual story showing and depictive drawing continue to provide to comics artists to achieve this engagement.
    • Europe - a default or a dream? European identity formation among Bulgarian and English children

      Slavtcheva-Petkova, Vera; Mihelj, Sabina; University of Chester ; Loughborough University (SAGE, 2012-11-21)
      This article examines the formation of European identity among children in two very different countries: the traditionally Eurosceptic United Kingdom and the enthusiastic EU newcomer, Bulgaria. The paper revisits existing debates about the relationships between European identity, knowledge and the political and historical context, paying particular attention to the meanings attached to Europe. It demonstrates that children who identify as European are more likely to see Europe in geographic terms, which facilitates the perception of the European identity as ‘default’. In contrast, children who refuse to describe themselves as European see Europe as an exclusive political entity, associated with high standards and distant elites. These perceptions are significantly more common among Bulgarian children, who often depict Europe as a dream, and perceive the European identity as an ideal they aspire to reach. The article also shows how ethnicity and the images of Europe influence the relationship between national and European identities.
    • Evading do-re-mi: Destruction and utopia: A study of Einstürzende Neubauten

      Pattie, David; Shryane, Jennifer (University of Liverpool (University of Chester)Published as Blixa Bargeld and Einstürzende Neubauten: German experimental music (Ashgate, 2011), 2009)
      This thesis represents the first comprehensive examination in English of the work of the Berlin-based music collective, Einstürzende Neubauten. It intends to offer evidence that the sonic forays of this group have not only defined a particular cultural moment but have also created new musical possibilities (to appropriate words from Brandon LaBelle). It does this by investigating why the work of these musicians is important within contemporary music, what cultural concerns their music reflects and how the music is created, performed and disseminated. These questions are explored through a range of contexts, including post-war Berlin, Germany’s problematic relationship with music, the development of Musique Concrète, Noise/Music and strategies for creative independence. There is a detailed analysis of Neubauten’s performance and textual techniques. This thesis argues that Einstürzende Neubauten are one of the few examples of ‘rock-based’ artists who have been able to sustain a breadth and depth of work over a number of years while remaining experimental and open to development; that their work offers evidence that they are one of the most complete examples of Artaudian practice in contemporary performance and that their Supporter Initiative (2002-2007) provided a unique working strategy for independence of the consumerist model of music. Finally, it argues that their work helps to present the case for the re-evaulation of European, non-English language contemporary music. Note -this version contains German spellings, corrected after final submission at the author's request.
    • Evidence on the extent of harms experienced by children as a result of online risks: Implications for policy and research

      Slavtcheva-Petkova, Vera; Nash, Victoria J.; Bulger, Monica; University of Chester ; University of Oxford ; University of Oxford (Taylor & Francis, 2014-07-08)
      Intense media and policy focus on issues of online child protection have prompted a resurgence of moral panics about children and adolescents' Internet use, with frequent confounding of different types of risk and harm and little reference to empirical evidence of actual harm. Meanwhile, within the academic literature, the quantity and quality of studies detailing the risks and opportunities of online activity for children and young people has risen substantially in the past 10 years, but this is also largely focused on risk rather than evidence of harm. Whilst this is understandable given the methodological and ethical challenges of studying Internet-related harms to minors, the very concept of risk is dependent on some prior understanding of harm, meaning that without efforts to study what harms are connected with children's online experiences, discussions of risk lack a strong foundation. This article makes a key contribution to the field by reviewing available evidence about the scale and scope of online harms from across a range of disciplines and identifying key obstacles in this research area as well as the major policy implications. The findings are based on a review of 148 empirical studies. Results were found in relation to main types of harms: health-related harms as a result of using pro-eating disorder, self-harm or pro-suicide websites; sex-related harms such as Internet-initiated sexual abuse of minors and cyber-bullying.
    • The Evolution of Alan Grant: Narratives of Reproductive Futurism in Jurassic Park

      Barnett, Katie; University of Chester (2018-06-08)
      As a quintessential product of 1990s Hollywood, Jurassic Park is reflective not only of shifts in form, production, and marketing, but of the underlying cultural preoccupations of the decade. In an era when Hollywood’s action heroes were increasingly making the transition to domesticated fatherhood, Jurassic Park offers a version of this narrative through the character of Alan Grant (Sam Neill). Alan Grant begins the film averse to the idea of parenthood and children in general; he dismisses them as “noisy, messy, expensive [and] smelly”, and is reluctant to engage with Lex and Tim on their tour of the park. This paper will examine the evolution of Grant’s character from this taciturn, aloof version of himself to a man who comes to embrace a paternal role by the end of the film. Shunted into the role of protector after the dinosaurs breach their compounds, he turns his focus to the survival of himself and the children. The narrative of Jurassic Park is preoccupied with reversing extinction. On a literal level, this concerns the dinosaurs resurrected by John Hammond. Beyond this, it is also applicable to Grant’s rehabilitation as a paternal figure. By the 1990s, Hollywood’s action heroes were diminishing, a reflection of the industry’s own preoccupation with the presumption of masculine crisis. Fatherhood was persistently constructed, throughout the decade, as an answer to this crisis, a way of ‘saving’ men and reaffirm their worth. As such, Jurassic Park may be read as a narrative of reproductive futurism, offering a tangible future as a father to Grant, channelling his energy towards his own survival as the helicopter flies past a flock of birds, the ancestors of the dinosaurs they have left on the island below.
    • Excitable tissues in motion capture practices: The improvising dancer as technogenetic imagist

      Sarco-Thomas, Malaika; Falmouth University (Intellect, 2013-10-01)
      This article outlines the potential of dance improvisation practice to function as a technological interface with one’s environment, drawing parallels between the performances of Twig Dances (Sarco-Thomas 2010) and technologies used in the life sciences to map living matter onto still frames. A postphenomenological approach is used to compare improvisation scores with image-making technologies. Scores that invite corporeal responses to the non-human, and kinaesthetic responses to organic matter, are highlighted as technologies which stand further exploration and examination as they mediate our experience of the world. A diversifying field of somatic practices is proposed as a means to investigate the potential knowledges generated by ‘excitable tissues’ enlivened through improvisational practices.
    • Experimental Sound Mixing for “The Well”, a Short Film Made for Tablets

      Dockwray, Ruth; Collins, Karen; University of Chester; University of Waterloo (MIT Press, 2018-03-12)
      This article presents an overview of the use of binaural recording and experimental headphone mixing for a short film. Drawing loosely on theories of proxemics, the article illustrates how sound mixing can be used to create a unique subjective perspective. In particular, the authors sought to experiment with and to use the peculiarities of stereo headphone mixing and binaural sound to reinforce visual elements of a film designed for horizontal viewing on tablets.
    • Exploring the material mediation of dialogic space—A qualitative analysis of professional learning in initial teacher education based on reflective sketchbooks

      Moate, Josephine; Hulse, Bethan; Hanke, Holger; Owens, Allan; University of Jyvaskyla; University of Chester; Europa-Universität Flensbur (Elsevier, 2018-12-05)
      This study addresses the crucial relationship between theory and practice as a key feature of professional learning in initial teacher education. The context for the study is an EU-funded intensive programme drawing on different dimensions of insideness and outsideness and arts-based pedagogies in response to the diversity of education today. The data for the study comes from self-selected pages from preservice teacher participants’ reflective sketchbooks. As a methodological approach that unifies the sensuous and cognitive this study suggests that reflective sketchbooks document the dialogic encounters of students whilst also providing a material space that can itself become a form of dialogic space for critical reflection. The main findings of the study outline critical ways in which preservice teachers transform theoretical inputs into individual expressions as well as conceptualise theory in relation to lived experience
    • Failing Recognition: habit, facture and imagination in the work of Andrei Molotiu and Carlos Nine.

      Grennan, Simon; University of Chester (University Press of Liege, 2016-10-01)
      A chapter in the edited collection "Abstraction and Comics."
    • Faith and understanding hold the key to change

      Erzan-Essien, Ato, Charles; University of Chester
      Former Lancashire Post journalist Ato Erzan-Essien explains what the Black Lives Matter movement means to him and how he believes it can be a driving force for much needed change in the world.
    • Fan Practices

      Duffett, Mark; University of Chester (Routledge, 2015-11-30)
      This piece is an introduction to the section on fan practices in the Routledge edited volume, Fan Identities and Practices in Context: Dedicated to Music. It consider how to understand and investigate popular music fan practices.
    • Fannish Identities and Scholarly Responsibilities: A Conversation

      Brooker, Will; Duffett, Mark; Hellekson, Karen; Kingston University; University of Chester (Routledge, 2017-11-08)
      Three innovative fan scholars with tremendous experience as fan scholars and as editors of fan scholarship, Will Brooker, Mark Duffett and Karen Hellekson, engage in a discussion of issues they feel are central to the methods and ethics of fan studies scholarship. In this conversation, they discuss best practices and methods for fan studies, the impact of scholars’ fannish identities on methods and ethics in fan studies, scholars’ relationships to fan objects and communities, and the responsibilities scholars should assume when studying fan communities.
    • Fans & Consumption

      Duffett, Mark; University of Chester (Bloomsbury, 2020-08-06)
      This chapter surveys different ideas from popular music studies, fan studies and associated areas to explain how ‘the rock audience’ has been perceived. It outlines four theoretical perspectives which can be associated in various ways. The first suggests that our understanding of the audience is a consequence of rock’s extended reaction against elitist criticism. The second says rock has created a kind of community, or at least communality. The third suggests that mainstream media representations have hidden significant fan productivity. A final perspective suggests that ‘the rock audience’ is actually a composite housing a variety of discreet experiences based on the social identities of its individual participants. In other words, for example, males and female fans may have distinct experiences; the same goes for fans of particular generations, national identities, musical tastes, subgenre interests, and so on. The chapter argues that a critically nuanced approach is required: in every instance, we need to ask by who and for what purpose and is ‘the rock audience’ being defined.
    • Fighting Putin and the Kremlin’s grip in neo-authoritarian Russia: the experience of liberal journalists

      Slavtcheva-Petkova, Vera; University of Chester (SAGE, 2017-05-16)
      Russia is one of the most dangerous countries for journalists and the conflict with Ukraine and Russia’s involvement in Syria present even further challenges for the future of Russian journalism. In addition to the financial pressures, physical attacks, abductions and harassment, liberal journalists now face an increasing threat to the democratising role they see themselves as playing. President Vladimir Putin’s soaring popularity and the elaborate range of tactics used to suppress press freedom are forcing liberal media to rethink their mission(s) and identity(ies). This paper presents empirical evidence on the range of tactics used by Russian authorities as well as the coping strategies adopted by journalists. The study shows that some Russian media and journalists demonstrate a great degree of resilience in their efforts to expose wrongdoings and hold the powerful to account. The article questions the applicability of Western-centric normative media system theories because it shows that the breadth, depth, and mechanisms of control in modern-day Russia are very different from the ones used during Soviet times, and yet, Russian media and society do not appear to be on a linear journey from authoritarianism to democracy. The article presents the findings of a semi-ethnographic study of some of Russia’s most influential liberal news outlets – Novaya Gazeta, Radio Echo of Moscow and Radio Free Europe/Liberty. The study was conducted in May 2014 in the midst of the conflict with Ukraine. It involved observations of editorial meetings, documentary analysis and interviews with editors, deputy editors and journalists.
    • Fishing in Puddles, Place and Space in Performance Research

      Piasecka, Shelley; University of Chester (Wiley & Sons, 2014-07-21)
      This article examines the significance of place and space from a Performance Studies and Social Studies perspective. In terms of the social sciences, I draw upon the formal, symbolic and marginal articulation of place. Hetherington suggests that certain places act as focal point for the establishment of social identities, citing city-centre landmarks and shopping malls. Similarly, children attach all kinds of values to the formal spaces they occupy. As one example of this point, I examine the child’s relationship to the school hall. From the perspective of performance, I examine a project undertaken at a junior school in Stoke-on-Trent, inspired by the site work of Wrights & Sites. As a critical lens, I adopt Boal’s understanding of the oneiric dimension. The oneiric dimension is particularly relevant in performance work as these are the moments when we (as performers and spectators) are pulled into the action. In these instances, the physical space simply disappears, imagination replaces actuality and the desire to believe outweighs the reality of the present.