• Introduction

      Hart, Christopher; University of Chester (Midrash, 2018-10-14)
      This introduction proposes the argument that during the First World War entertainments , media and popular culture used the war to attract audiences and readers - five propositions are introduced. The first is this. Entertainment as a topic for study is not trivial, inconsequential or irrelevant. To understand any culture look at what its members do for their entertainment. This includes looking at such things as, in 1914, jokes and humour, songs and music, drama and plays, cartoons and caricatures, films and animation, fiction and gossip, photographs and illustrations, advertising and posters, and newspapers and magazines. This proposition will be discussed in more detail once the other four propositions have been stated. The second position is this. The core activities that are taken as entertainment, such as the cinema, books, music and newspapers, are surrounded by the institutions, industries and crafts which bring the entertainments to the marketplace. The third position is the recognition people read, sing, watch, listen and laugh not just for leisure but also when doing work and other activities. Entertainment does not always have to be separate from the workplace or from time doing work-based tasks; it can be incorporated into most aspects of life. The fourth position follows on from longstanding debates about hierarchical schemes of entertainment regarding differentiated cultural value. Notions of high culture and low culture, popular culture and elite culture are overworked dichotomies that distract attention from the entertainment under study, as a thing in itself, and lead to prejudice against one of the classes of entertainment on the scale. If classical music performances are elitist, exclusionist and class-based it does not entail they are ‘bad' and things should be otherwise. It is not the music or musicians that are excluding anyone. It is the instructional arrangements that bring such performances to the marketplace, a lack of education provided about the value of the experience and, possibly, snobbishness of some audiences. The fifth proposition is entertainment is about audience experience. This can take multiple forms for the same audience of an entertainment. Bosshart and Macconi (1998) include the following in a list of possible experiences an audience member can take from consuming a particular media - obtaining relaxation, being distracted, seeing something different to the norm, seeking excitement or a thrill, wanting to laugh, sharing the joy and enjoying a place.
    • Introduction

      Grennan, Simon; Sabin, Roger; Waite, Julian; University of Chester; Central Saint Martins University of the Arts London
      Introduction to the book 'Marie Duval: maverick Victorian cartoonist'.
    • Introduction (Sport, Media and Regional Identity)

      Roberts, Simon Gwyn; University of Chester (Cambridge Scholars, 2015-12-01)
      Introduction to an edited volume entitled Sport, Media and Regional Identity.
    • Introduction to the book: Interdisciplinarity in the Performing Arts: Contemporary Perspectives

      Sarco-Thomas, Malaika; Aquilina, Stefan (Malta University Press, 2018)
      The introduction to this book includes an overview of current discourses on interdisciplinary research and practice within the performing arts, and gives an overview of chapters contained in the book. Interdisciplinarity in the Performing Arts: Contemporary Perspectives contributes to current discussion about the intrinsic interdisciplinary nature of the performing arts, while also identifying the potential which theatre, dance, and music have in creating bridges with other disciplines like neuroscience, social sciences, philosophy, pedagogy, and therapy. Coordinated by the School of Performing Arts of the University of Malta and featuring contributions from KU Leuven, Ghent University, Vrije Universiteit Brussel (Belgium), Royal Holloway (London), Universidade Estadual de Campinas (Brazil), and Adam Mickiewicz University (Poland), this publication explores questions brought forward by approaches to performance that interweave theory and practice, through examples of methodologies, philosophies, interpretations, and applications of interdisciplinarity today.
    • It's a book! It's a game! It's 'Building Stories'! Play, Plot and Narration in Graphic Narrative.

      Grennan, Simon; Hague, Ian; University of Chester, London College of Printing (5th International Graphic Novel and Comics Conference, British Library London., 2014-06-01)
      In reviews of Chris Ware’s Building Stories, critics regularly draw attention to the board-game like design of the comic’s box and elements of the text within. Yet while many have noted the similarities between Building Stories and the visual/physical design of board games such as Monopoly, and Ware himself has cited ‘French "Jeux Reunis" game sets from the late 19th and the early 20th century’ as one of the inspirations for the work’s design concept, few go as far as to suggest that Building Stories actually is a game. In this paper, Simon Grennan and Ian Hague will consider the ways in which Building Stories’ narrative structure mirrors those conventionally found in games. Drawing upon works published by Bethesda Softworks, such as Fallout 3, Fallout: New Vegas and the Elder Scrolls series, as well as comics including Jason Shiga’s Meanwhile and Actus Tragicus’ Actus Box: 5 Graphic Novellas, and literary works such as Marc Saporta’s Composition No.1 and B.S. Johnson’s The Unfortunates, Grennan and Hague will interrogate some of the formal and discursive relationships between play and narrative, such as the productive structuring of choice, the impact of types of accumulated and excluded actions upon plot and the narratological implications of subverting the social habits by which games, comics and literature are defined. Utilising Seymour Chatman’s 1978 theorisation of narrative as a ‘double time’ structure, being the time of the plot plus the time of the text, they will suggest that both games and comics promote specific discourse activities over others as conditions of comprehension, whilst sharing formal structures that are utilised in each register to underwrite the distinctions between them. Hence, it is as possible to choose to read the cells of comic in any order as it is to choose one course of actions over another in a game. Grennan and Hague will analyse the degrees of similarity and difference between these options in their particular contexts, relative to an experience of a plot, in order to problematise the relationship between discourse and plot at the heart of Chatman’s theory.
    • It’s All in Proportion: Tracing the Evolution of the Time-Aggregate in Roberto Gerhard’s Music

      Sproston, Darren; University of Chester (Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2016-12-01)
      This chapter investigates a very specific innovation in Roberto Gerhard’s compositional practice and traces its possible origins. The technique in question is the “time-aggregate” or use of proportions, directly derived from the tone row, as a structural device. This inquiry begins Roberto Gerhard’s article “Functions of the Series in Twelve-Note Composition” and then works in reverse chronological order through his writings and compositions and through the musings of other scholars finally dwelling on three works which are believed to be Gerhard’s earliest experiments in the use of the method: the Three Impromptus (1950), Capriccio for Solo Flute (1949), and the Sonata for Viola (Cello) and Piano (1948/1956).
    • It’s Only Teenage Wasteland: The Home Media Revival of Freaks and Geeks

      Barnett, Katie; University of Chester (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017-10-27)
      This chapter explores the home media revival of the short-lived US TV series Freaks and Geeks (1999-2000), examining the ways in which successful fan campaigns led to the broadcast of missing episodes and the eventual DVD release of the series in 2004. The developing cult status of Freaks and Geeks is discussed, with particular reference to the series' use of music and the ways this both contributes to the authenticity of the programme and became a barrier to its home media release.
    • I’m (Not) A Girl: Animating Experiences of Girlhood in Bob’s Burgers

      Barnett, Katie; University of Chester (Intellect, 2019-03-01)
      Discourses of girlhood increasingly acknowledge its mutability, with the ‘girl’ as a complex image that cannot adequately be conceptualized by age or biology alone. Likewise, theories of animation often foreground its disruptive potential. Taking an interdisciplinary approach that encompasses girlhood studies, animation studies, and screen studies, this article analyses the representation of the two main girl characters, Tina and Louise Belcher, in the animated sitcom Bob’s Burgers (2011–present). Taking this concept of mutability as its central focus, it argues that animation is an ideal medium for representing girlhood, given its disruptive potential and non-linear capacities, whereby characters are often frozen in time. With no commitment to aging its young female characters, Bob’s Burgers is instead able to construct a landscape of girlhood that allows for endless reversal, contradiction and overlap in the experiences of Tina and Louise, whose existence as animations reveals girlhood as a liminal space in which girls can be one thing and the other – gullible and intelligent, vulnerable and strong, sexual and innocent – without negating their multifarious experiences.
    • Jazz on the border: Jazz and dance bands in Chester and North Wales in mid-twentieth century

      Southall, Helen; University of Chester (Equinox, 2013)
      There was a high degree of overlap between western popular music and jazz in the mid- twentieth century. However, histories of jazz and histories of popular music are often puzzlingly separate, as if divided by strict borders. This article looks at some of the rea- sons for this (including those proposed by Frith (2007) and Bennett (2013). The impor- tance of musical pathways and hidden histories (Becker 2002, 2004; Finnegan 2007; Nott 2002; Rogers 2013) in the context of local music scenes is considered. The importance of taking live music scenes and provincial areas into account when discussing genre his- tories is discussed, in the context of examples from an oral history study of dance-band musicians and promoters in the Chester (UK) area. These examples help to demonstrate that boundaries between jazz and popular music are frequently less abrupt in practice than they are in theory.
    • Jerwood applied arts prize 2002: Textiles

      Bristow, Maxine; Dring, Rowena; Goldsmith, Shelley; Kimura, Shizuko; Moriarty, Lauren; Padovani, Clio; Robins, Freddie; Taylor, Sarah; University of Chester (Bristow) (Crafts Council, 2002)
      This exhibition was a touring exhibition of work by eight artists who were nominated for the Jerwood Applied Arts in 2002.
    • John Bull’s Other Ireland: Manchester-Irish Identities and a Generation of Performance

      Harrop, Peter; O'Sullivan, Brendan M. (University of Chester, 2017-05)
      This thesis provides an auto-ethnographically informed ‘making strange’ of the mise-en-scène of Irish working class domesticity in the North West of England as it was lived during the 1960s, 1970s and into the 1980s. The liminality of being a child of migrant parents is considered and the interstices of experience and identity in and of England and Ireland, Englishness and Irishness are explored. The first chapter of the thesis draws the reader into the initial frame of reference, the personal childhood ethnography that inspired this wider study, and considers Bhabha’s ‘shadow of the nation’ falling ‘on the condition of exile’ as one context for the development of individual identities. The second chapter examines the ways in which a performance studies approach provides a useful method for interrogating matters of place, personhood and citizenship whilst the third chapter introduces performance theory as a mechanism for exploring the ways in which quotidian and cultural performance have been harnessed as tools of negotiation. These are sometimes resistant, sometimes affirmative and sometimes celebratory acts in the construction of new identities. Ongoing performances reveal the embodied histories of individual performers, shaped in part by culture and memory, masking and unmasking to both construct and reveal layered identities. The fourth chapter, provides the most obvious example of traditional fieldwork, and draws on interview extracts to provide key insights into aspects of the diasporic context, identifying and analyzing the many rehearsal and performance opportunities provided by growing up in Irish households in England, where identities were initially formed, informed, and performed. Bridging the distinction between autoethnography, performance ethnography and the ethnography of performance, this chapter engages in discussion with a range of contributors defamiliarising the domestic mise-en-scène whilst simultaneously recognizing a commonality of experience. These interviews are themselves a celebration of Irish identity performance and form an important bridge between the theoretical framework explored in the opening chapters and the subsequent case studies. The final section of the thesis searches out a mirroring of these processes in the construction of theatrical and mediatised performance – providing opportunities to both utilize and observe performance ethnography and the ethnography of performance. It is suggested that Terry Christian provides an affirmative yet angry celebration in a complex performed response to a complex mise-en-scène. A new reading of Steve Coogan’s work then suggests three modes of performance: first, Coogan the outsider satirises British mores; second, Coogan plays sophisticated games of revealing and masking multiple versions of self; third, a searching and ultimately serious engagement with his engagement with Ireland. The application of a performance theory perspective, in the context of this fraction of the Irish diaspora, reveals a playful and generous spirited approach to complex and serious matters of identity and place in the world – to the ways in which lives are led and meanings made through and for the generation of performance.
    • Journeys of the self: Marion’s partial ‘mediagenius’ and the motive reader in comparitive theories of intersubjectivity.

      Grennan, Simon; University of Chester (6th Graphic Novel and Comics Conference and 9th Bande Desinee Society Conference, Paris., 2015-06-01)
      Phillipe Marion uses the neologism ‘mediagenius’ to describe the way in which stories specify themselves though the systematic, discursive relationships that constitute communications registers, by means of what Jan Baetens calls ‘style’, ‘storytelling’ and ‘medium’ (2001). In Marion’s sense, comic strips have a specific mediagenius that is quite distinct from the mediagenius (the ‘style’, ‘storytelling’ and ‘medium’) of other narrative registers, such as movie or writing. The most discussed element of comics’ mediagenius is the notion of ‘graphiation’, a term that Marion uses as a drawn equivalent for the concept ‘utterance’ in linguistic narratology: graphiation is the comics register’s specific bundle of actions, traces and constraints that conjures its relationships between producers, situations and readers. However, graphiation fulfills only one function in the mediagenius of comics proposed by Marion, outside which, with increasing adoption in scholarship, the term is closing itself down, becoming a sign for the recognition of authorial subjectivity, understood as drawing style. Adopting this use of graphiation as a shorthand for recognising subjectivity, this paper will examine in some detail Marion’s conception of comics’ mediagenius as an encompassing theorisation of intersubjective communication, at the level of register, with particular focus on the narrative function of reading as a journey of the self. The paper will then compare comics’ mediagenius systematically to three other theories of intersubjective communication devised by Valentin Volosinov (1929), Martin Barker (1989) and Nick Crossley (1996), using the comparisons to index broader topics facing the study of narrative drawing, in particular the possibilities suggested by recognising relationships between genre and embodiment; relationships between embodiment, motion and representations of time; and relationships between trace and the acts of recognition and misrecognition
    • Knowsley Flower Show Archive: a Resource and Celebration

      Grennan, Simon; University of Chester
      The Knowlsey Flower Show Archive presents personal memories, materials and memorabilia of Knowsley Flower Show, between its inception in 1999 and today. In particular, the Archive focuses on the growers, competitors and visitors to the Marquee, which remains the centre of the event. Knowsley Flower Show averages around 20,000 visitors to its large day event in August every year. It is a free public event held at Court Hey Park, a public park in Knowsley. The event centres on a traditional Marquee with around 90 amateur growers exhibiting and competing for prizes in categories encompassing fruit and vegetables, flowers, produce and crafts. The Archive includes a free online image and text archive, a publication and a touring exhibition.
    • Kurt Schwitters - Responses to Place, Sayle Gallery (Exhibition Review)

      Quayle, Cian; University of Chester (Kurt Schwitters Society Newsletter, 2014-02-14)
      Essay/review of the exhibition Responses to Place at the Sayle Gallery, Isle of Man, 27 September - 27 October 2013. The exhibition was curated by Fran Lloyd (Kingston University) and featured a selection of artworks and other artefacts by Kurt Schwitters and other artists who were interned in the Isle of man during World War II.
    • Kurt Schwitters in Isolation - An Aesthetics of Resistance

      Quayle, Cian; University of Chester
      Following his escape from Norway and arrival in Britain - via Edinburgh - Kurt Schwitters was interned in the Isle of Man from July 1940 to November 1941. The essay investigates Kurt Schwitters isolation and marginalised position during the internment period and the different modalities of exile which Schwitters trajectory reveals. Upon his arrival in Douglas Schwitters use of the discarded and worthless in his finding, collecting and transformation of materials was already established. In the context of exile this process finds its denouement in a series of collages, assemblages, sculpture and paintings, which form part of an archive of over 200 works made during this time. In these works, the febrile and sensitive nature of their handling and making embodies the conditions of habitation, isolation and exile within which they were crafted. The artworks which Schwitters made embody a very specific material presence in the rarefied use of objects, materials and things, which take on a different significance in this context. Schwitters status as an artist in exile is that of a ‘double-bind’ having fled a home to which he and fellow refugee artists could likely never return. The situation was one defined, confined and reconfigured by circumstances both within and beyond his control in terms of the choice and or availability of materials, which he and fellow artists had access to. These conditions were ultimately defined by the isolation, uncertainty and fear, which the internees endured in their separation from family and friends. At the same time the fabric of the environment and significantly here the lived-in-space, which Schwitters inhabited came to signify the hermetic nature of specific works and performances. The separation from home, family and friends and the depression and anxiety, which Schwitters and other internees suffered was compounded in their not knowing from one week to the next when they might be released. This was exasperated as a result of the restrictions which their correspondence was subject to in its censorship.
    • Learning Jam: an evaluation of the use of Arts Based Initiatives to generate polyphonic understanding in Work Based Learning

      Passila, A.; Owens, Allan; Pulkki, Maiju; Lapeenranta University of Technology; University of Chester; Aalto University (Emerald, 2016-05-09)
      The purpose of this paper is to conceptualise ‘Learning Jam’ as a way of organising space, time and people through arts based pedagogies in work based learning. This form of encounter originated in Finland to challenge functional silo mentality by prioritising polyphony. Through the use of a 'kaleidoscopic pedagogy', Arts-Based Initiatives (ABIs) are used to collectively and subjectively reconsider practice. The research design is grounded in one of a series of Learning Jams co-created by practitioners from the field of arts and arts-based consultancy and academics from the field of arts, arts education, innovation and management, learning and development. The focus was on exploring the value of each participants work based learning practice through the lens of an Arts Value Matrix. Rancière´s critical theory was used to frame the exploration. The research questions asked; what are the ingredients of this creative, transformative learning space and in what ways can the polyphonic understandings that emerge in it impact on Work-Based Learning? Findings of this study centre around alternative ways of being in a learning setting where we do not defer to the conventional figures of authority, but collectively explore ways of organising, where the main idea is to lean on something-which-is-not-yet. A key research implication is that teaching in this context demands reflexive and dialogical capabilities for those who hold the role of organizing and facilitating spaces for learning and transformation. The main limitation is in stopping short of fully articulating detailed aspects of these capabilities. The originality and value of the practice of Learning Jam is that managers and artists explore the potential of operating as partners to develop new ways of working to realise organisational change and innovation.
    • Leaving the Building: Elvis, Celebrity and the Limits of Psychological Autopsy

      Duffett, Mark; Hearsum, Paula; University of Chester; University of Brighton (l’Association Française d’Études Américaines, 2018-10-01)
      This article probes the limits of one particular mode of biographic investigation—psychological autopsy—and considers its relationship to the way in which fans have sought to understand their hero. Using Elvis as a case study, we aim to prompt wider discussion about the efficacy of psychological autopsy as a means of understanding popular individuals. If psychological autopsy is so compromised, why does it remain popular? Our discussion develops in two parts. The first examines how psychological autopsy departs from objectivity and is problematic as theory. The second asks why fans are still interested in discussing why Elvis died, even though psychological autopsy necessarily lacks methodological rigour.
    • Leicester City lift the title: A triumph to touch the hearts of all sports fans

      Hassall, Paul; University of Chester (Eurosport UK, 2016-05-07)
      A focus on the afternoon Leicester City FC made a fairytale dream a reality and sealed one of the most famous sporting surprises of all-time.
    • Let’s Do the Time Warp Again: Performing Time, Genre, and Spectatorship

      Ellis, Sarah T.; University of Chester (Routledge, 2019-07-01)
      "Let's Do the Time Warp Again: Performing Time, Genre, and Spectatorship" identifies an affective link across nonrealist, time-warping genres of science fiction / fantasy and musical theater, as well as their dedicated and overlapping fan cultures; by considering reality to be historical and contingent, these anti-quotidian genres explore the limits of what is objectively present, and physicalize a temporally divergent world in the here and now.
    • Literary and Historic Flâneuses: Observation, Commentary, Enterprise and Courage in Late-Nineteenth-Century Women’s Professional Lives

      Grennan, Simon; Hall, Leo (Oxford University Press (OUP), 2019-02-09)
      Abstract Discussions of the conception of that exemplar of late-nineteenth-century and early-twentieth century urban modernity, the flâneur, have focused on both critique of the figure’s masculinity and more radical and nuanced conceptions of women’s flânerie. This article considers both the re-gendering and ungendering of flânerie in the character of three flâneuses in fiction published in the 1870s, 1880s and 1910s: Madame Sidonie, Henrietta Stackpole, and Elsie Bengough, and related dissonances and synergies in the career and work of London actress and cartoonist Marie Duval, active 1869–1885. It will argue that changes in types of reading supervened upon the boom in the production and distribution of serial publications during this period, resulting in the embodiment of new female professional identities, relative to both changing experiences of urban life and changing experiences of reading. The article makes a distinction between new ideas of these types of urban professional woman and the development of the identity of the New Woman after 1894. It examines the historic comprehensibility of the fictional flâneuses to readers of Zola, James, and Onions, according to the new opportunities and prohibitions that constituted the lived experiences of the developing urban entertainments industry of the period, in Duval’s comic strips and vignettes in the weekly London magazine Judy, or The London Serio-Comic Journal.