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The Indian film industrys importance for audiences worldwide has been celebrated by an increasing number of edited collections and papers boasting of Bollywoods globally expanding territories. However, questions about the nature of Indian cinema circulation remain to be explored: what enables Indian cinema to circulate? How does circulation of the films themselves sit within a broader set of flows of film technology, personnel, music, posters, stars? What theoretical and methodological tools are appropriate to this multi-sited field? And whilst the South Asian diasporic formations of Britain and North America have been undoubtedly important, much less analyzed are the Indian diasporas associated with nineteenth century plantation capital in the Caribbean, Fiji and South Africa, as well as those non-Indian audiences that consume Indian films in Turkey, Nepal, Austria, Kenya, Russia and elsewhere. These cinema contexts offer additional positions from which to develop analyses of Indian cinema: for example, the plantation diasporas historical trajectories are distinctively different from other diasporas. Moreover, exploring Indian cinema within diverse national agendas, whose history and socio-political realities are not overtly Indian-orientated, opens up debate on alternative appropriations of India, as well as questions about the nature of film circulation itself.

Organized by SOAS and the Centre for Research and Education in Arts and Media (CREAM) at the University of Westminster, Indian Cinema Circuits: Diasporas, Peripheries and Beyond, will focus on questions of circulation, with particular reference to these peripheral sites, where, in many cases, Indian films have been watched since the 1930s, and aims to complicate accounts that position Bollywood as a recent global phenomenon.

The conference organizers are Atticus Narain and Ranita Chatterjee.


Thursday 25 June

  • 9.00 am Registration and coffee
  • 9.45 am Welcome: Atticus Narain and Rosie Thomas
  • 10.00 am Keynote: BRIAN LARKIN, Barnard College, Columbia University

Indian film, Equivalence and the Politics of Circulation

Chair: Atticus Narain, SOAS, University of London

  • 10.50 am Coffee
  • 11.15 am Appropriation: Music and Modernity  Chair/ Respondent: Daya Thussu, University of Westminster

> Greg Booth, University of Auckland: Mediating Nostalgia: The Production and Reception of Reflexive Song Scenes in the Hindi Cinema

> Sujata Moorti, Middlebury College, Vermont:Strictly Song and Dance: Paradoxes of Bollywood Modernities

> Anna Morcom, Royal Holloway, University of London: Bollywood Behind the Bamboo Curtain: The Unofficial Filmi Links of India and Tibet

> Tina K Ramnarine, Royal Holloway, University of London: Shah Rukh Khan Goes to Trinidad? Bollywood in a Caribbean Island Soundscape

  • 1.00 pm Lunch
  • 2.00 pm Mediated Identities

 Chair/ Respondent: Rosie Thomas, University of Westminster

> Abdalla Uba Adamu, Bayero University, Nigeria: Transnational Media Spaces and Hindi Films in Muslim Africa

> Poonam Arora, Zayed University, UAE: Indian Cinema in the Gulf: Encounters Between Beduins, Shaikhas and Tawaifs

> Shenar Gabriele, Keele University, UK: Consuming Bollywood in Israel: Performance, Creativity and Aesthetics Beyond India

> Ahmet Grata, Bilkent University, Ankara: Re-representing Indian Cinema in Turkey

  • 3.45 pm Tea
  • 4.15pm Global Circulation and the UK 

 Chair/ Respondent: Dina Iordanova, University of St. Andrews

> Rajinder Dudrah, University of Manchester: Performing Bollywood: Hindi Cinema Entertainment Shows in the Diaspora

> Aswin Punethambekar, University of Michigan: What Brown Cannot Do For You: Satellite Television and the Limits of Bollywood

> Roy Stafford, Freelance Writer & Lecturer, Bradford: Bollywood and the False Profile of Indian Cinema

> Nirmal Puwar, Goldsmiths, University of London & Sanjay Sharma, Brunel University: A Fading Public Space: Methods for Cinema Re-workings

  • 6.00 pm Wine Reception

Friday 26 June

(please note that the programme had to be slightly modified)

  • 9.30 am Registration and coffee
  • 9.50 am Keynote: RAVI VASUDEVAN, Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, Delhi

The Circulation of Bollywood in Contemporary Film Culture: Towards multi-sited Histories of Indian Popular Cinema

Chair: Rosie Thomas, University of Westminster

  • 10.45 am Coffee
  • 11.15 am Circuits of the Popular

 Chair/Respondent: Christopher Pinney, Northwestern University/UCL

> Nitin Govil, University of California, San Diego: The Face-work of Textual Travel

> Lotte Hoek, University of Amsterdam: Popular Cinema in South Asia: Thinking about the B-movie in Bangladesh, Pakistan and India

> Sudhir Mahadevan, University of Washington, Seattle: Circulation and Early Cinema Technologies in Bengal

> Ranjani Mazumdar, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi: Event Management, Liveness and the New Circuits of Film Stardom 

  • 1.00 pm Lunch
  • 2.00 pm Multi-sited Histories

Chair/ Respondent: Steve Hughes, SOAS, University of London

> Ned Bertz, University of Hawaii: Indian Ocean World Cinema: Race, Diaspora, and Urban Space in Tanzania, 1929-2009

> Laura Fair, Michigan State University: 'The Best Film of All Time!: Audience Reception of Awara in Zanzibar

> May Ingawanij, University of Westminster: Dubbing nang khaek: Localising Hindi films in Thailand, 1960s-1970s

  • 4.00 pm Tea
  • 4.30pm Diasporas and Beyond 

Chair/ Respondent: John Hutnyk, Goldsmiths, University of London 

> Rachel Dwyer, SOAS, University of London: Bollywood in East Africa

> Atticus Narain, SOAS, University of London: Guyana: Indian Cinema, Piracy and Televisual Politics

> Rashmi Sawhney, Dublin Institute of Technology: Manorama to Moore Street Masala: Irelands Own Bollyworld

> Iris Vandevelde et al., University of Antwerp: Indian Film in Antwerp: A Specific Case of Diasporic Cinema Culture

  • 6.15 pm Closing Remarks