Publications of IMNN members and other publications related to nostalgia are regularly updated and appear here: https://medianostalgia.org/references/ and please find here other IMNN member’s activities
roman abramov | angela acosta | omar al ghazzi | jack anderson | alexandra bardan | tobias becker | david berliner | carolyne birdsall | alastair bonnett | dariusz brzeziński | giorgio busi rizzi | elena caoduro | josh carney | beatriz carlsson pecharromán | damien cassar |yanning chen | ana coelho | claire coleman | gary cross | gabriele de seta |sophie dufays | michael d. dwyer | ezgi elçi | nermin elsherif | emmanuelle fantin | sebastian felzmann | talitha ferraz | sébastien fevry | kristen galvin | ross garner | dion georgiou | ana paula goulart ribeiro | berber hagedoorn | tim van der heijden | dennis henneböhl | amy holdsworth | blake huggins | ekaterina kalinina | mirjam kappes | slavka karakusheva | alexei kazakov | emily keightley | colleen kennedy-karpat | gulbin kiranoglu | will kurlinkus | zoë anne laks | javier leñador | ryan lizardi | natalija majsova | josé vicente martín martínez | irene martínez marín | antonella mascio | manuel menke | mani mehrvarz | dario miccoli | maarten michielse | christian hviid mortensen | maryam muliaee | jenny naish | katharina niemeyer | zamansele nsele | adam ochonicky | gilad padva | mario panico | tristan paré-morin | michael pickerig | milica popovic | landi raubenheimer| marta romero | niklas salmose | cleo sallis-parchet | andrew j. salvati | lucia santa cruz | nicola sayers | bjørn schiermer | dominik schrey | constantine sedikides | ola siebert | sabine sielke | richy srirachanikorn | tobias steiner | matthias stephan | grafton tanner | alexander r. e. taylor | xenia tsiftsi | mellow wei | tim wildschut | kathleen williams | tim wulf
My focus of the interest is the nostalgia on the late soviet period in Russia. I pay special attention to forms of materialized and mediatized nostalgic memory about the period 1960-1980 in the Russian history. I have also examined nostalgic representations in private and national museums and internet, especially in social networks and blogs. Additionally, I am studying the social history of the Russian professional communities and connections their culture with the professional culture of the late USSR. Recently, I started research work devoted the controversial history first decay of the post-soviet times: “dashing nineties”. Now this time is the subject of the political and historical discussions in Russian society.
Roman Abramov – professor National Research University Higher School of Economics (Moscow) and senior follow Federal Center of Theoretical and Applied Sociology of the Russian Academy of Sciences. He is Doctor in sociology (2018) and specializes on memory studies, social history, sociology of professions and education. He is research fellow Lincoln University (UK), CEU, Helsinki University, University of Washington (Fulbright), EHESS (Paris).
- contact: Socioportal (at) yandex.ru, rabramov (at) hse.ru
I am interested in the relationship between nostalgia and homages to writers, artists, and intellectuals of the Spanish avant-garde (1898-1939). My interest in nostalgia began as an undergraduate when I noticed the continued importance of the Spanish avant-garde in present day literary criticism and commemorations of the period that primarily focus on ten male poets. I began to critique the generational model of Spain’s Generation of 1927 that has excluded female writers and artists and I have since been working on research projects related to women writers of “las Sinsombrero” like Concha Méndez, Carmen Conde, and Elena Fortún in an effort to produce new research on their writing and understand the politics around paying homage to and experiencing nostalgia for the Silver Age of Spanish literature. To this end, I also study sites of memory in twentieth century Spain and contemporary homages to the Generation of 1927.
Angela Acosta is a Ph.D. student in Iberian Studies in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at The Ohio State University (United States). She holds a master degree in Spanish from The Ohio State University and bachelor degrees in Spanish and English Language and Literature from Smith College. She studies Silver Age Spanish literature as well as the cultural milieu of writers during the Second Spanish Republic. Her current research focuses on ongoing debates about the legacy of the Generation of 1927 and the artistic production of female artists known as “las Sinsombrero”. Her research also intersects with memory studies and literary and cultural representations of the Spanish Civil War and Francoism.
- contact: acosta.81 (at) osu.edu
I am interested in the politics of nostalgia in the Middle East and North Africa, particularly in relation to conflict, activism and authoritarianism/ populism. My research has looked at nostalgia on Arab social media and how nostalgic sentiment and aesthetic is creatively deployed in activist media material during and in the aftermath of the 2011 Arab uprisings, whether in amateur YouTube videos or on Twitter. I have also examined nostalgic representations in television series. I looked at cases from Syria and also transnationally in regards to the debates that nostalgic Turkish TV series generate in Syria and the Arab world. I contextualized those debates around issues of nationalism, political identity, authoritarianism and masculinity.
Dr Omar Al-Ghazzi is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Media and Communications, the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). Omar is interested in the role of media and communication in political conflict, activmanuelism, and collective memory, with a focus on the Middle East and North Africa. Before joining LSE, he was a lecturer (assistant professor) at the University of Sheffield’s Department of Journalism Studies. Omar’s research has appeared in journals such as Communication Theory and Media, Culture & Society. A former Fulbright scholar, Dr Al-Ghazzi comes from a journalism professional background and has previously worked at Al-Hayat Arabic daily and BBC Monitoring. He completed his PhD at the University of Pennsylvania’s Annenberg School for Communication.
- contact: o.al-ghazzi (at) lse.ac.uk
My interest lies in mapping nostalgia in contemporary British cinema, television, and literature, looking at the landscape of lost childhood and the spatiotemporal poetics of its return. Currently, I am developing research on a new project, ‘Bodies of Water and Geographies of Dead Childhood’, which I hope to take to a publisher as an edited book in 2022/2023. Outside of that my fields of research in nostalgia also include hauntology, contemporary Scottish film and literature, British politics and (New) Labour, a range of work on Russia / the Soviet period, and the cultural/political framework of memory and nostalgia around the 2000s.
Jack Anderson completed a Masters of Research thesis entitled The Spatial Cosmology of the Stalin Cult: Ritual, Myth and Metanarrative at the University of Glasgow in 2017. He is the author of ‘Return, Remembrance and Redemption: The Topography of Trauma in The Virtues and This is England ’88’, Journal of British Cinema and Television, (18:1) and four forthcoming book chapters: ‘”It’s just one of them things innit, there’s nothing you can do about it”: the specter of Thatcherism in This is England ’86-’90’ in R. Laist (ed), Imagining the 1980s: Representations of the Regan Decade in Popular Culture; ‘”That canal gees me the creeps”: Haunted Bodies of Water and Geographies of Dead Childhood in the Cinema of Lynne Ramsay’, and ‘”Always already dead”: Losing the lost in Anderi Zvyagintsev’s The Return’, both in C. Martin and D. Olsen (eds), The Undead Child: Representations of Childhoods Past, Present, and Preserved; and ‘Performing the Political: ‘Cool Britannia’ and the Facade of New Labour Leftism in The Office and Extras’, in K. A. Wisniewski (ed), The Comedy of Ricky Gervais: Critical Essays.
- contact: jackanderson10(at)live.co.uk
My focus on nostalgia has its roots in my PhD thesis (2008), where I documented the development of alternative cultural strategies during the ‘80s in communist Romania. Also around 2008, I noticed, within social media sources, a series of bizarre photographs showing role-playing participants in communist themed soirées organized by local nightclubs. The average age of the participants appeared to point towards a generation born around, or after 1989. How, and mostly, why would youngsters voluntarily use events and symbols of an epoch radically jettisoned by their parents’ generation? With this question, I opened rich and fertile research site, questioning post-communist nostalgia among different Romanian generations.
Alexandra Bardan has a BA in Fine Arts at the Art Academy, Bucharest and a PhD in Information and Communication Sciences at Université Sorbonne-Nouvelle Paris 3. She is a lecturer at the Faculty of Journalism and Communication Studies, University of Bucharest, where she teaches courses in “Editorial Design”, “Photojournalism”, “Digital Image Production” and “Desktop Publishing”. Her research interests cover Visual Communication, Post-Communist Nostalgia, Social History and Everyday Life in Communist Romania. .
- contact: alexandra.bardan(at)fjsc.ro
When I began researching nostalgia, I seemed to have a clear idea what nostalgia meant. The more I read, the more ambiguous and vague its meaning became to me. As a consequence, the ways in which nostalgia is defined and used and the critical discourse about nostalgia has evolved into a major interest itself. More generally, I’m interested why and how people engage with the past and to which extent they are motivated by nostalgia. And finally, I’m interested in how popular culture makes use of the past and whether nostalgia accurately describes these uses.
Tobias Becker is a Research Fellow at the German Historical Institute London, where he works on the “nostalgia wave” in the 1970s and 1980s. He is also co-authoring a textbook on the history of European popular culture since the eighteenth century. His research interests lie in the field of modern European history, urban history, the history of popular culture and the history and theory of history.
- contact: becker (at) ghil.ac.uk
I am interested in the contemporary figures of cultural loss. Losing culture, identity, traditions, knowledge and the need to transmit are tropes mobilized by individuals and groups worldwide. I am looking at heritage nostalgia, diagnoses of cultural loss, the multiple ways in which people think about and express memory, loss, persistence, transmission and heritage.
David Berliner is a Professor of Anthropology at Université Libre de Bruxelles. He has conducted ethnographic fieldwork in Guinea-Conakry and Laos. His topics of research are social memory, cultural transmission and the politics of heritage, as well as the study of gender and sexuality. Some of his articles have been published in American Ethnologist, Cahiers d’Études Africaines, JRAI, Terrain, HAU, L’Homme, RES anthropology and Aesthetics and Anthropological Quarterly. He is the author of Mémoires Religieuses Baga (2014). He has co-edited with Ramon Sarro a collection of essays, Learning Religion: Anthropological Approaches (2007), with Olivia Angé: Anthropology and Nostalgia (2014) and with Christoph Brumann: World Heritage on the ground (2016).
- contact: David.Berliner(at)ulb.ac.be
In my previous work I have written about sound technologies, listening practices and nostalgia, with a particular interest in historical discourses about “the earwitness”. This prompted a related interest in memory practices, media nostalgia and the recycling of archival sound recordings (and other a-v materials).
At present, there are two aspects to my research that are relevant to IMNN. The first is a historical project about the emergence of radio archiving in and beyond Europe, which examines the emergence of practices of recording, editing, archiving and re-using programme content, and how media nostalgia, memory, and heritage processes played in to this development. The second is an interest in a more explicit methodological reflection within the interdisciplinary field of memory studies (through collaboration with Danielle Drozdzewski), which is linked to my interest in developing mixed methodologies for media nostalgia research.
Carolyn Birdsall is Assistant Professor of Media Studies at the University of Amsterdam. Her publications include Nazi Soundscapes: Sound, Technology and Urban Space in Germany, 1933–1945 (2012), and Sonic Meditations: Body, Sound, Technology (2008, edited with Anthony Enns). Birdsall’s current research examines sound archival practice, with a particular interest in early radio archives and concepts of ‘documentary sound.’ Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
My two main interests in the study of nostalgia are its relationship to left politics and its geography. In my recent book ‘The Geography of Nostalgia’ the role of nostalgia in media culture and consumerism in the content of globalisation is explored alongside a wider discussion of nostalgia as a central aspect of late capitalism.
Alastair Bonnett is Professor of Social Geography at Newcastle University. He is the author of seven books including What is Geography? How to Argue; Left in the Past: Radicalism and the Politics of Nostalgia and The Idea of the West: Culture, Politics and History. He has also contributed to history and current affairs magazines on a wide variety of topics. His latest research projects are about memories of the city and themes of loss and yearning in modern politics.
- contact: alastair.bonnett (at) newcastle.ac.uk
My interest in nostalgia emerged from the studies of Zygmunt Bauman’s theory of culture in the years 2014-2017. I was fascinated by his concept of retrotopia that I found very useful in the analysis of contemporary social and cultural transformations. Since that time, I have been inspired by many other theoretical concepts and empirical research on nostalgia. I have examined, inter alia, the nostalgic longings of the youth and the relation between utopia and nostalgia in the contemporary condition. Currently I am reflecting on the origins, modalities and implications of “the nostalgic turn” in the 21st century.
Dariusz Brzeziński is as an Assistant Professor at the Institute of Philosophy and Sociology of the Polish Academy of Sciences (Department of Theoretical Sociology) and a Visiting Research Fellow at the School of Sociology and Social Policy at the University of Leeds. He teaches sociology and anthropology at the Jagiellonian University in Cracow as well. His research focuses on contemporary social thought, sociology of culture, and theory of culture. He is the author of Zygmunt Bauman and the Theory of Culture (2022) and the co-editor of Revisiting Modernity and the Holocaust: Heritage, Dilemmas, Extensions (2022). Dariusz Brzeziński wrote on many aspects of social theory and sociology of culture – including contemporary dimensions of nostalgia – in such journals as: “European Journal of Social Theory”, “Thesis Eleven”, “Polish Sociological Review” and many others.
- contact: dbrzezinski (at) ifispan.edu.pl
My focus is on nostalgia in the graphic novel. Graphic novels are an extremely interesting object because they are constitutionally hybrid from a formal point of view (due to their mixture of text and images and their testimonial capacity which, however, always foreground, at the same time, their representational mediation). Moreover, as an object they lie at the intersection between auraticity and authorship (on the one hand) and editorial practices of production and reception typical of mass culture (on the other). Finally, the narrated events almost always present a sensible tension between individual experiences and collective memory (generational, national, and so on) – which is true for every kind of nostalgic narrative, but even more true for the media products crafted in the last forty years. Furthermore, in my thesis (and in the two articles on the same subject published so far, on nostalgia in It’s a good life if you don’t weaken, by Seth, and The Arrival, by Shaun Tan) I try to show that, in a multimodal object like comics, nostalgia cannot be only a thematic element, but is inevitably made up of a web of features that are also stylistic, structural, and linked to the reception of the comics itself.
I am currently reworking my PhD project as a monograph which should hopefully be published by 2022.
Giorgio Busi Rizzi is BOF post-doctoral fellow at Ghent University, with a project investigating experimental digital comics. He holds a PhD in Literary and Cultural Studies with joint supervision from the Universities of Bologna and Leuven; the PhD project analysed nostalgic aesthetics and practices concerning contemporary graphic novels. He is interested in comics studies, narratology, digital humanities, humour theory and translation. He is member of several research groups on comics studies, and a founding member of SnIF – Studying ‘n’ Investigating Fumetti, a research group devoted to Italian comics.
- contact: giorgio.busirizzi (at) ugent.be
My interest in the intersection between screen media and nostalgia stems from my doctoral thesis which explored the memory of left-wing terrorism in the German and Italian cinema of the new millennium. My research investigates those films that look back at the long 1970s and its violence through a nostalgic lens. Nostalgia functions as the pharmakon of memory, in other words both the cure and the poison for remembering a troubled past. Nostalgia shades shameful aspects and the retreat into sugarcoated images filters trauma and sanitises the memory of terrorism. As a palliative against anxiety, in these films nostalgia contributes to the cultural elaboration of the caesura left by the terrorist violence of the 1970s. I have also a keen interest in analogue nostalgia, skeumorphism, and period drama.
Elena Caoduro is Lecturer in Media Arts at the University of Bedfordshire, UK, co-chair of the SCMS Transnational Cinemas SIG and member of the Executive Committee of BAFTSS (British Association for Film, Television and Screen Studies). She received her PhD in Film Studies from the University of Southampton in 2015 and beside nostalgia, her research interests include representation of terrorism in media, fashion and costume.
- contact: elena.caoduro (at) beds.ac.uk
My interest in nostalgia stems from my dissertation research on the Turkish TV serial Magnificent Century (Muhteşem Yüzyıl, 2011-2014), a costume drama that was both popular and controversial throughout its Turkish broadcast life, once coming under direct attack from (then) Prime Minister (now President) Erdoğan for its “false” portrayal of the glorious Ottoman past. My dissertation adapts and makes extensive use of Boym’s restorative/reflective typology to better understand why and how Century’s portrayal of the past evoked such anger, and what this says about the uses of history in contemporary Turkey.
I also teach a course on media and public memory that explores various conceptions of memory in relation to the nation, focusing in particular on cinematic presentations of nostalgia and trauma.
Josh Carney is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Communication at the University of South Florida. He received a PhD in Communication and Culture and an MA in Central Eurasian Studies (Turkish Studies) from Indiana University in 2015. His dissertation, A dizi-ying past: Magnificent Century and the motivated uses of history in contemporary Turkey, examines the circulation of and controversies surrounding the Ottoman costume drama Muhteşem Yüzyıl through an ethnographic investigation of the producers, distributors, cultural intermediaries, and publics for the popular TV show. His most recent project deals with censorship at film festivals in Turkey between 2014 and 2016. His other areas of specialization include visual culture, nationalism, history and culture of modern Turkey, media ethnography, reception studies, and media production.
- contact: jlcarney (at) umail.iu.edu
I am interested in the aesthetics of nostalgia, particularly how nostalgia is expressed or conveyed through literature. Because nostalgia is such a multi-layered experience – personal yet cultural, individual yet universal – I am curious about the ways in which the aesthetics of nostalgia differ yet remain similar across cultural borders. Because (contemporary) nostalgia is so often linked to modernity, I believe that in order to understand how nostalgic aesthetics have taken form, it is crucial to investigate the impact of Western imperialism on the nostalgic imaginaries of coloniser and colonised, and of the ambiguous spaces in between.
Beatriz Carlsson Pecharromán is a Ph.D. student in comparative literature at Linnaeus University in Sweden. At the university she is enrolled in the Global Humanities Ph.D. program and is a member of the Centre for Concurrences in Colonial and Postcolonial Studies. She holds a master’s degree in English, also from Linnaeus University. Her current research entails cross-cultural comparisons of the aesthetics of nostalgia, with a focus on how these have been shaped by Western imperialism.
- contact: beatriz.carlssonpecharroman (at) lnu.se
I am interested in the allure, danger and instability of nostalgia, and how nostalgia can inform, shape and disrupt identities. My focus lies in the creative possibilities of nostalgia on screen to reflect upon history, identity and progress. In my Masters degree I identified a mode of recent prestige fictional nostalgic television from the United States that I have initially titled “hypernostalgiavision.” These texts root their aesthetic in the somewhat fantastical “restorative nostalgia” defined by Svetlana Boym in The Future of Nostalgia (2001), yet their content undermines this aesthetic via Boym’s alternative “reflective nostalgia”. Currently in my Creative Practice PhD I am attempting to create a “hypernostalgiavision” series for an Australian context, set in the 1980s and inspired by the nuanced migratory story of my family of origin from Italy and Malta to Egypt to England and Australia.
Damien Cassar is a PhD in Creative Practice student at the University of New England (Australia). He holds a Masters Degree in Media and Communications from UNE with a dissertation entitled Taking the Temperature of Now: Recent Fictional Nostalgic Television of the United States: This is Us, Stranger Things and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. He also has Bachelor degrees with Honours in Media and Law from Macquarie University. Damien is an established director and creative of film, television and advertising within Australia, winning an Australian Directors Guild award in 2017.
- contact: dcassar (at) myune.edu.au
My interest in nostalgia stemmed from my strong aspiration to fix my iPod after not using it for many years. This sentimental longing for out-of-date technology artefacts becomes the topic of my master thesis. In my PhD project, I continue working on the relevant topic of people’s memory of old mobile phones and their technostalgia-motivated consumption in China. I hope this research will respond to the need for research on memory and nostalgia practices in a non-western context, and the lack of concern for economic activities in current memory studies.
Yanning Chen is a doctoral researcher in the Centre for Research in Communication and Culture at Loughborough University under the supervision of Prof. Emily Keightley and Dr. Alena Pfoser. She obtained her Bachelor’s degree of Journalism and Master’s degree of Communication studies in Sichuan University in China (2013-2020). Her PhD project is jointly funded by Loughborough University and the China Scholarship Council. Her interests include memory studies, consumption, material culture and qualitative methods.
- contact: y.chen6 (at) lboro.ac.uk
My interest in nostalgia emerged while working for my MA in screen adaptations of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. Although I did not have the opportunity the develop it then, I’ve come back to the topic in my PhD project. I am particularly interested in the way contemporaneity reshapes Austen, both the author and her novels. I wish to further research the concept of nostalgia in such context, particularly in the way it contributes to the construction of a Jane Austen icon, both in traditional and new media.
- contact: anaalcobiacoelho (at) gmail.com
I initially became interested in nostalgia through a process of self-critique, in which I started to examine my own attraction to visual and aural artefacts that adopt a vintage or retro style or aesthetic. Why do I like objects, films, photos, books or music so much more when they possess a certain kitsch, handmade or old-timey quality? My own fascination seemed mirrored in popular culture, as well as by my peers, and I became interested in the idea that the nostalgic aesthetic experience influences and is influenced by contemporary culture. My doctoral thesis uses techniques associated with multimodal discourse analysis to examine nostalgia in indie folk music.
Claire Coleman completed her Bachelor of Music Education at the University of Western Australia in 2005. Claire worked for several years in a range of roles associated with music performance, education and administration, a highlight of which was founding and directing Menagerie indie-pop choir. She has also volunteered for various not-for-profit organisations, sitting on the Board of Catch Music, and champions inclusive and accessible community music activities. Upon returning to study she undertook an Honours project examining authenticity and relationality in Australian contemporary folk music. She commenced her PhD, which addresses the role of nostalgia in indie folk music, at Western Sydney University in 2013 under the supervision of John Encarnacao, Kate Fagan and Diana Blom.
- contact: 17630782 (at) student.uws.edu.au
Having grown up in the 1950s and 60s in the American west, I have a whimsical fondness for popular retro tv and oldies music (even though I was brought up a high culture snob); and, as a late modern historian of consumption, childhood, and technology, I fairly naturally gravitate to the topic of nostalgia and media. I am currently finishing a book probably to be called “Growing up with Cars” and will write another, “Fast Capitalism and Fast People” on the history and implications of the fast turnover of goods and media in the 20th century. Though I do mostly American topics, I have done British, French, and Australian history in my now old career of writing a dozen books or so. I’m Distinguished Professor of History at Pennsylvania State University and have been there since 1983.
Gary Cross is Distinguished Professor of Modern History at Pennsylvania State University. He is the author of a dozen historical books on childhood, consumption, technology, popular culture, and work, notably Men to Boys: The Making of Modern Immaturity; The Cute and the Cool: Wondrous Innocence and Modern American Children’s Culture; and An All-Consuming Century: Why Commercialism Won in Modern America.
- contact: gsc2 (at) psu.edu
I am fascinated by the mediation of memory and nostalgia largely as a reaction against the pervasive emphasis on futurity and presence that animates most scholarship on digital media. All media are shot through with temporalities: archives and interfaces inscribing and being inscribed with the threads of lived, remembered and imagined time articulated by their networked publics, audiences and users. Many of these temporalities are oriented towards the past, assembling and preserving personal and collective memories, or sharing and mobilizing countless varieties of nostalgia. I’ve repeatedly encountered the mediation of memories and nostalgias during my fieldwork in Mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, and I’m particularly interested in exploring how different publics and communities articulate these temporalities in relation to the accelerating and momentous changes brought about by urbanization.
Gabriele de Seta is a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute of Ethnology, Academia Sinica in Taipei, Taiwan. His research work, grounded on ethnographic engagement across multiple sites, focuses on digital media practices and vernacular creativity in contemporary China. He is also interested in experimental music scenes, Internet art, and collaborative intersections between anthropology and art practice. More information is available on his website http://paranom.asia.
- contact: notsaved (at) live.com
My interest in nostalgia emerged first from my doctoral research about the roles of the child character in Argentine fiction cinema of the post-dictatorship era (from 1983). By analyzing the aesthetic and interpretative models according to which the child represents a collective mourning related to Argentinean history, I distinguished between “nostalgic” and “melancholic” films, offering two different kinds of allegorical articulation between childhood and historical past. Beyond childhood stories, I find the difference between nostalgia and melancholy very thought-provoking, for example to study the distinctions between contemporary recuperations of melodrama and tragedy. In my current research about songs in Latin American films, the notion of nostalgia is also fundamental, since it sets out to reveal the practices, processes and forms of memory (especially, the nostalgic and the utopian ones) that these songs bring into play.
Sophie Dufays is a postdoctoral researcher in Latin American Studies at the Catholic University of Louvain (Belgium). She has published to books (monographs) about the child’s figure in post-dictatorship Argentinian cinema (El niño en el cine argentino de la postdictadura (1983-2008). Alegoría y nostalgia and Infancia y melancolía en el cine argentino, de La ciénaga a La rabia) and her articles have been published in collective books and journals such as Hispanic Review, Bulletin Hispanique or Bulletin of Hispanic Studies. She has been an invited professor at Ghent University and a Visiting Scholar at Stanford University. As a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the FNRS, she focused on the persistence of melodrama as a model and an anti-model in contemporary Argentine and Mexican cinemas. Her current research project deals with the narrative, aesthetic and memory issues of popular song in Latin American cinemas.
- contact: sophie.dufays (at) uclouvain.be
I have been a nostalgic person for almost as long as I can remember. Even as a kid, I thought a lot about my own past, and thought about how my thought feelings about my past structured my present. Years later, in graduate school, I studied the history and culture of the American 1950s and found them to be, quite to my surprise, a time of uncertainty, fear, controversy and radical change. That was a surprise to me, I realized, because so much popular culture in circulation in the 1980s was designed to foster nostalgic feelings toward the 1950s. These practices of representing the past, as well as the culturally fostered feelings of nostalgia, I concluded, were neither neutral nor neutral—they were shaped, and shaped by, the political, cultural, and social conditions of their emergence. My work since I came to that conclusion has investigated the diverse, competing, and sometimes overlapping invocations of nostalgic affect, and how they influence American historical consciousness.
Michael D. Dwyer is an assistant professor of Media and Communication at Arcadia University. His research interests include the relationship between popular narratives and cultural memory, the interaction between popular music and film, fan cultures, and the politics of DIY arts and music. His writing has recently appeared in outlets like CultureBot, Alphaville,Flow, Negative Dunkalectics and In Media Res. His first book, Back to the Fifties: Nostalgia, Hollywood Film and Popular Music of the Seventies and Eighties, which explores the diverse and often competing uses of nostalgia for the 1950s in film and pop music from 1973-1988, was a was published in 2015 by Oxford University Press.
- contact: dwyerm (at) arcadia.edu
I developed an interest in nostalgia during my Ph.D. dissertation. While I was designing my proposal, I realized that yearning for the past dominates contemporary politics. Particularly populist politicians exploit nostalgia to construct the moral dichotomy between “the people” and “the elites.” Thus, I decided to study the relationship between collective nostalgia and populist attitudes. I used a range of methods and data sources. Firstly, I analyzed how Turkish politicians instrumentalize populism and nostalgia by using insights generated from the automated content analysis. Secondly, I conducted a survey analysis that tests whether there is a positive association between collective nostalgia and populist attitudes. Finally, by using a survey experiment, I measured how nostalgic messages influence populist attitudes.
Ezgi Elçi is a postdoctoral research fellow in the Migration Research Center at Koç University (MiReKoç). He obtained his Ph.D. in the Department of International Relations and Political Science at Koç University, Turkey, with the dissertation titled “Politics of Nostalgia: Psychological Origins of Populism.” Previously, he was a visiting student researcher in the Center for the Study of Global Issues (GLOBIS) at the University of Georgia with a Fulbright grant. His primary research interest lies at the intersection of political behavior and political communication with an emphasis on the individual determinants of support for populism. His research interests also include survey experiments, content analysis, and migrants and minorities in Turkey.
- contact: eelci14 (at) ku.edu.tr
- Twitter: twitter.com/ezgielci35
The wide spread nostalgic sentiment in the Arab world, especially after the defeat of the 2011 social movements, provoked me to question how do the present difficulties affect our perception of the past and how does the past function as a resource for cultural and social capital. My interest in following the counter narratives of the past, and exploring the hidden and invisible archives, led me to explore social media as exhibitions of online-personas, I started realising the relationship between the performance of social class online and subscribing to a specific narrative of the past.
Nermin Elsherif is PhD candidate in Amsterdam School for Heritage, Memory and material Culture (UvA), part of CHEurope, a Marie Sklodowska-Curie actions (MSCA) project. Her research “Technobiographies of an Imagined Past” investigates how the social life of the Arab speaking north African and East Mediterranean cities is remembered online, critically questioning the meaning of ‘remembering together’ in the age of social media. She focuses on the circulation of vintage photographs of the cities that are usually accompanied by a nostalgic mourning narrative of the once-had, now-lost middle-class modernity.
- contact: N.E.M.Elsherif AT uva.nl
My interest in the ‘rewriting’ of the past through media naturally led me to the field of nostalgia. I am fascinated by the ‘ordinary’ uses of the past, the multiple expressions of memory, loss and temporalities in everyday life. I explore how nostalgia stands as a stereotypical and fictional representation used to build mnemonic bridges in the present time. More broadly, I try to understand how media shape and crystallize imaginaries of the past, I question the persuasive force of cultural beliefs in a twinkling past. Being a nostalgic person too, my researches also reflects a personal dynamics, trying to understand why the past seems so alluring …
Emmanuelle Fantin (born 1986) is Associate professor at CELSA Paris-Sorbonne and member of the Group of Interdisciplinary Researches in Information and Communication (GRIPIC, La Sorbonne University). Her researches focus on advertising, consumption and the commodification of the past as well as on the relationship between media, memory and history. Lately, she has been working on the role of nostalgia within the representations of migration.
- contact: emmanuelle.fantin (at) paris-sorbonne.fr
Born and raised in the 80’s, I’m highly fascinated by the whole Retrogaming scene, esp. the fans of the Commodore 64. To fully understand this community and the attraction of old videogames I’m using Media Nostalgia as a research tool to identify different modes of cultural usage and the interconnection between official gaming history and personal memory.
Sebastian Felzmann, M.A., studied German Literature and Journalism at the KIT and worked as a research assistant and project manager for third-party-funded projects and initiatives at the University of Arts and Design in Karlsruhe. Together with Adam Rafinski and Jens M. Stober he initiated the HfG GameLab. As a freelancer and consultant, he supported several major clients in the field of game studies (GEELab Europe) and the economic power of games (City of Karlsruhe – Economic Development Department). Sebastian loves retro games and old gaming devices so much, that he had written a book about that subject, several scientific papers and even held various lectures about Media Nostalgia and Gaming History.
- contact: sf (at) colognegamelab.de
My interest in nostalgia emerged from expansions of studies on cinema-going memories and movie theatres’ history that I have been performing in my academic career. In a post-doctorate research developed at the Centre for Cinema and Media Studies of the Ghent University (CIMS-UGent), Belgium, I examined cases of cinema reopenings, with a special attention to the uses of cinema-goers’ memories by the revitalization projects. Since then, I have focused my investigations on the connections between memory, nostalgia, cinema-going experiences and affective communities, considering nostalgia as a creative and productive field of acts and expression dynamics. Within this context, I have been working on the notion of “activated nostalgia” in the project “Activating nostalgia: audience mobilizations, cinema-going memories and institutional strategies in the cases of Circuito Estação, Cine Vaz Lobo and Cine Belas”, carried out at Escola Superior de Propaganda & Marketing (ESPM), Brazil.
Talitha Ferraz (born 1982) is assistant professor at Escola Superior de Propaganda & Marketing (ESPM) and head of the Ways of Seeing Research Group (ESPM-CNPq). Simultaneously she serves as associate reseacher at the Coordenação Interdisciplinar de Estudos Contemporâneos (CIEC-UFRJ) and the Laboratório de Estudos de Memória Brasileira e Representação (LEMBRAR-ESPM). She holds a PhD in Communication & Culture from the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Brazil, with a doctoral internship at Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal. She also performed a postdoctoral research at the Centre for Cinema and Media Studies of the Ghent University (CIMS-UGent), Belgium, between 2015 and 2016. Her investigations are focused on topics such as media and nostalgia, cinema-going memories and reopening of cinemas.
My interest for nostalgia has first emerged while I was working on the sepia wave appearing in the popular French cinema, with films like The Chorus (Christophe Barratier, 2004) or Little Nicholas (Laurent Tirard, 2009). These films project the image of an ideal past in an French society more and more obsessed by its memory and I was dealing with the idea that the nostalgia of the sepia wave revealed an important change in the frameworks of the collective French memory. Currently, my research is more focused on nostalgia phenomena dealing with changes of social status. I’m particularly interested in the case of ‘class defector’ described by Richard Hoggart and Didier Eribon. In this perspective, I examine how the nostalgic mood can be linked with the social position of the filmmaker, and then appear in films through editing choices which lead to mix together high and low culture, intimate and collective history, as it occurs for instance in Of Time and the city (2008) by Terence Davies.
Professor at the School of Communication in the Catholic University of Louvain (UCL, Belgium) and coordinator of the GIRCAM research group, Sébastien Fevry works in the field of Memory Studies, focusing especially on cinema and image. He has recently co-edited a collection of articles on the images of the Apocalypse in cinema (2012). His latest book, La comédie cinématographique à l’épreuve de l’Histoire, has been published by L’Harmattan (2013). He is also the author of numerous articles in journals such as Image & Narrative, Espacestemps.net, Cinergie, Revista de Estudios Globales y Arte Contemporáneo, Cahiers Mémoire et Politique
- contact: sebastien.fevry (at) uclouvain.be
My interest in nostalgia studies was first concretized through teaching an undergraduate course on popular music and film, while writing my dissertation on the height of New York’s “Downtown Scene” between 1978-1983. I immediately became fascinated with how this cultural period has been revisited and represented in film, television, music, and art, and moved on to a broader exploration of how the 1980s has become a site of increasing nostalgic returns across culture and politics in the United States. My current book project explores what I call “hypernostalgia”—the increasing intensity, excess, and saturation of nostalgic expressions and products—to demonstrate how such cultural nostalgias and the fraught identity category of “Americanness” have become mutually constitutive in the 21st century.
Dr. Kristen Galvin is the Assistant Director for Graduate Engagement and Lecturer in the Center for the Humanities and Public Sphere at the University of Florida. Examining post-1960s visual and material culture in the United States, her interdisciplinary scholarship explores intersections across film and media, popular music, performance, gender and sexuality, memory, contemporary art, and subcultural studies. She holds a Ph.D. in Visual Studies from the University of California, Irvine, and has published work in the Journal of Popular Music Studies, Critical Studies in Men’s Fashion, Leonardo Electronic Almanac, Art Journal Open, American Book Review, and in edited collections. She is currently writing a book entitled American Hypernostalgia.
- contact: kgalvin (at) ufl.edu
My interest in mediated forms of nostalgia, primarily linked to television, grew out of my own fan attachments as I spent most of my teens (and beyond) watching programming from previous historical periods such as ‘classic’ Doctor Who, The Wombles and The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin (to name but a few). Extending these interests in to academia, I became intrigued with how and why certain programmes endure and become recontextualised across different industrial, media and historical contexts and how different programming forms, genres and brands use nostalgia as a strategy for issues including targeting and amalgamating audiences and fulfilling institutional requirements (such as public service remits). These are all areas that my research explores as, through taking nostalgia seriously and discussing the various encodings which media industries construct, my interest focuses on how institutional and historical contexts construct multiple forms of nostalgic discourse on television.
Ross Garner is a Lecturer in Television Studies at the School of Journalism, Media and Cultural Studies, Cardiff University. He received his PhD from Cardiff University and his Masters in Television Studies from the University of Bristol. His research interests include industrially-focused approaches to mediated nostalgia, cult television and mediated spaces and tourism.
- contact: GarnerRP1 (at) cardiff.ac.uk
After completing my PhD, I became particularly interested in how the popular culture of the past has been reimagined and reused in the wake of related transformations such as globalisation, digitisation and economic liberalisation, in order to explain and reframe recent history, redefine or reaffirm generic structures, deploy older cultural products for contemporary purposes, and create new rituals. This commenced with research into the phenomenon of contemporary nostalgia for the ‘Britpop’ music of the 1990s, which I am now in the process of writing a short book on, provisionally entitled Britpop Afterlives: Remembering, Replaying and Retelling the 1990s. I am also currently in the process of writing a number of articles and book chapters on popular culture and the uses of the past in Britain and the US, on topics including the representation of British labour, women’s and gay history in the films Made in Dagenham and Pride, and the 2009 campaign to get Rage Against the Machine’s ‘Killing In The Name’ to UK Christmas Number One. Furthermore, I am now editing (with Tobias Becker) a book, provisionally entitled Pop Nostalgia? Uses of the Past in Western Popular Culture.
Dion Georgiou is a Teaching Fellow in the Department of Culture, Media and Creative Industries at King’s College London, and an Assistant Lecturer in the School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research at the University of Kent. He previously completed his PhD in the School of History at Queen Mary University of London. His broader research interests are in: Cities and suburbs; Temporality, lifecycles and the uses of the past; Cultural production, adaptation, dissemination, generification and reception; Organisational structures and cultures in the public, private and voluntary sectors; Domestic, international and global conflict.
- contact: DionGeorgiou(at)hotmail.co.uk
For the last twenty years I have been studying the relationship between media and memory. In the beginning, I investigated how the culture of memory – which makes the appeal to the past one of the great imperatives of our time – contaminates even the journalistic media, whose main focus would be the link with the present. In recent years, I have also dedicated myself to reflecting on nostalgia, more specifically through its configurations in audiovisual products of serial fiction. I believe that nostalgia says a lot about the ambiguous and contradictory ways in which we relate to our temporality today. The concept seems central to understanding the dynamics of culture and the ways in which we constitute our individual and collective identities.
Ana Paula Goulart Ribeiro is a professor at the School of Communications at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) and director of the research group Media, Memory and Temporality (Memento) at the same university. She is the author of the book Press and History in Rio de Janeiro in the 1950s (2006) and co-edited the collections Media and Memory (2007), History of Television in Brazil (2008), Mikhail Bakhtin: Language, Culture and Media (2010), Communications and History (2011), Entertainment, Happiness and Memory: Driving Forces of the Contemporary (2012), Television, History and Genres (2014), among others. She is a researcher at the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq).
- contact: goulartap(at)gmail.com
My research interests in the context of memory, history and nostalgia are studying the representation of past events, expressed via participatory media, multi-platform storytelling, practices of cultural memory and the re-use of archival footage, particularly for television, film and digital media. I specifically conduct research on (digitized) audiovisual material as cultural heritage (see for example EUscreen, promoting the use of television content to explore Europe’s diverse cultural history). In my dissertation Doing History, Creating Memory: Representing the Past in Documentary and Archive-Based Television Programmes within a Multi-Platform Landscape, I explored how televised history contributes to cultural memory and how television’s convergence with new media technologies has affected its role as a mediator of the past. Within this context, I study the changes and developments that the multi-media landscape undergoes on social-cultural, institutional and technological levels. Currently, I am researching the power of storytelling strategies of audiovisual media – from television and radio to social media – in representing (disruptive) media events, both in a European comparative context and using digital data research tools.
Berber Hagedoorn is Assistant Professor at the University of Groningen Research Centre for Media and Journalism Studies. She is specialized in Media and Cultural Studies and in 2016-2017 works as a Researcher in Residence at the Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision in Hilversum, studying the impact of audio-visual representations of historical events and the power of narrativization via digital search processes and learning with AV. Her Digital Humanities experience includes (inter-)national projects on digitalized audio-visual heritage and cultural memory such as VideoActive and EUscreen, and the 2017-2018 CLARIAH Research Pilot (together with dr. Sabrina Sauer) “Narrativizing Disruption”, a project on how exploratory search can support media researchers to better interpret ‘disruptive’ media events as lucid narratives. Hagedoorn is the Vice-Chair of the ECREA Television Studies section, organizing cooperation for European research and education into television’s history and future as a multi-platform storytelling practice. She has published in amongst others Media and Communication, Continuum, Studies in Documentary Film, Rundfunk und Geschichte, Tijdschrift voor Mediageschiedenis (Journal of Media History) and VIEW.
- contact: b.hagedoorn (at) rug.nl
My interest in the intersections between nostalgia, media and memory is closely connected to my PhD research project on the cultural dynamics of home movies as a twentieth century memory practice. For more than a century, people have been documenting their family and everyday lives on film, video and digital media. The material carriers and technical equipment used for the recording, screening and saving of these family memories can be regarded as “technologies of memory”. While a connection between home movies and nostalgia usually relates to the images (and sounds) as mediated representations of the past, I am particularly interested in contemporary memory practices and cultures of (re)use which convey a certain longing for or remediation of past media technologies, both in terms of their materiality and aesthetics. In this double mnemonic process, which I have called “technostalgia”, media technologies not only construct or mediate memories but have also become the objects of memory themselves.
Tim van der Heijden is a PhD candidate at Maastricht University, the Netherlands. He holds a RMA degree in Media Studies from the University of Amsterdam (cum laude) and a BA in Cultural Studies from Erasmus University Rotterdam/University of Essex, UK. His research interests include media theory & history, cultural memory, visual culture, amateur film, technology and aesthetics. His doctoral research, which is part of the NWO-funded research project Changing Platforms of Ritualized Memory Practices: The Cultural Dynamics of Home Movies, investigates from a long-term historical perspective how changing technologies of memory production (film, video, and digital media) have shaped new memory practices in home moviemaking and screening. Next to his research activities, he is also a board member of the Dutch Foundation for Amateur Film.
- contact: timvanderheijden (at) gmail.com
My interest in nostalgia stems from a masters seminar on Brexit rhetoric and its wider cultural contexts. This initial engagement with nostalgia then developed into a PhD project dealing with the ubiquity of nostalgic narratives in contemporary British culture and society. The work situated in the discipline of British Cultural Studies – and also drawing on other adjacent fields such as literary studies, media studies and history – brings together theories on nostalgia with the concept of narratives. In doing so, I develop an approach that conceptualises nostalgia as a narrative and reads dominant forms of nostalgia as ‘master narratives’ in Jean-François Lyotard’s sense. More specifically, I posit the existence of what I call a ‘master narrative of nostalgia’ in contemporary British culture and society. One focus of my analysis lies on the ways politicians and the media perpetuate and instrumentalise this master narrative for various purposes, for instance within the context of Brexit or the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, I investigate how this nostalgic rhetoric interrelates with cultural products like films, TV series or literature. Of special significance is not only how popular culture can contribute to and support the contemporary master narrative of nostalgia but also challenge and subvert it.
Dennis Henneböhl is a PhD student in the field of British Cultural Studies and English literature at Paderborn University (Germany), where he was awarded a scholarship for his PhD thesis. The main focus of the project is on nostalgia in contemporary British culture and society. Among his other key research areas are the BrexLit genre, historical fiction, political rhetoric, Britain’s relationship with Europe, and British popular culture. He has presented at various national and international academic conferences as well as (co-)authored articles in peer-reviewed journals and chapters in edited collections.
- contact: dennis.henneboehl (at) uni-paderborn.de
My interest in nostalgia emerged from a (continued) preoccupation with the forms and functions of repetition in popular culture and, specifically, within the experience of television. Theories of memory and nostalgia offered a framework through which to examine questions of both form and feeling in relation to television and I began to understand television (as visual medium and material object) as a privileged site of nostalgia. I published Television, Memory and Nostalgia (Palgrave) in 2011 but continue to be fascinated by the slipperiness of nostalgia as a mode of engagement with the past, present and future. At the moment I am particularly interested in thinking about nostalgia as a form of homesickness and the relationship this has to television as both a domestic medium but also as a transmitter of so many varied images of ‘home’. Related to this but drawing upon another area of research I am also working on the relationship between nostalgia, childhood and children’s culture.
Amy Holdsworth (born in 1979) is a lecturer in Film and Television Studies in the School of Culture and Creative Arts at the University of Glasgow. She received her PhD from the University of Warwick in 2008 and a Masters in Cultural Studies from the University of Leeds in 2003.
- contact: Amy.Holdsworth (at) glasgow.ac.uk
I have always been a nostalgic person, but my path to nostalgia studies as a scholarly pursuit took a circuitous course. It began, before I realized it, in my study of religion surrounding the themes of temporality, memory, and futurity. When my interests took me to philosophy and “theory” more broadly, I found a welcome set of tools to help articulate a long-standing suspicion — that received understandings of nostalgia not only neglect its full range of expression, but often occlude its value as a site for cultural production and socio-political contestation. My study of the history of nostalgia eventually corroborated this and my dissertation project sought to clarify and deepen the role nostalgia plays in cinema by analyzing “New Hollywood” directors and developing close readings of key figures in affect theory and continental philosophy.
Blake Huggins is a cultural studies scholar and a lecturer in philosophy and writing based in the northeastern U.S. He holds a Ph.D. from Boston University with specializations in philosophy and religion, and nurtures broad interdisciplinary interests rooted in the humanities and liberal arts. His research explores the tensions and intersections between memory, emotion, and temporality in conversation with critical theory, film and new media, affect studies, and philosophies of time.
- contact: blake.huggins (at) gmail(dot)com
I have been considering myself a nostalgic for a long time now. After a walkabout around my former neighborhood in my late nineteens, I realized that nostalgia was the feeling that I enjoyed the most. Since then, I have been constantly searching for similar experiences from time to time, making an effort not to be hooked by longing too much.
Soon in my early twenties I could note that I was not the only one enjoying these hidden desires of bringing the past back, but It has not been until my late twenties and after researching other matters in Art History that I have not seen the research appealing of nostalgia.
Javier Leñador holds a degree in Business Management as well as Art History and a Masters in Contemporary Art and Visual Culture by Reina Sofía Museum and Universities Autónoma and Complutense of Madrid. Since 2019, he is a PHD candidate at the University of Seville (under the supervision of Luis F. Martínez Montiel and María Jesús Godoy Álvarez), working on a project that considers nostalgic emotion as an aesthetic experience in its own right. They focus on pieces of contemporary art (mainly installations) in and out the museum as triggers for nostalgic and immersive experiences, placing them on the nowadays culture of yearning and revival.
- contact: jlenador (at) us.es
My interest in nostalgia is grounded in individual and cultural experiences. Being born in Russia in the beginning of the 1980s and belonging to the so-called last generation of the Soviet children who matured during the first presidential terms of Vladimir Putin, I have been observing the development of Post-Soviet nostalgia. My curiosity to this phenomenon resulted in the completed PhD dissertation, called Mediated Post-Soviet Nostalgia (2014). Combining Raymon Williams’ concept of structure of feeling with theories of mediation and nostalgia, the book Mediated Post-Soviet Nostalgia examines the changes that occurred in the representations of the Soviet past in Russian culture from 1991 to 2012, covering a wide range of mediating arenas. Right now I continue my research on nostalgia, albeit with a slightly different focus. What fascinates me the most is agency of nostalgia, political nostalgia and gender nostalgia, as well as nostalgia theory and methodologies of research on nostalgia.
Ekaterina Kalinina (born 1983) earned MA degrees in Art History at the St Petersburg University and in European Studies at Uppsala University. Her PhD project in Media and Communication Studies “Mediated Post-Soviet Nostalgia” was carried out under the auspices of the Baltic and East European Graduate School (BEEGS) and the Research Area on Critical and Cultural Theory, Södertörn University. She has also been a visiting researcher at Copenhagen University and Aarhus University. Right now she is a research fellow at Swedish National Defense University and works with the questions of Russian patriotism, biopolitics, nostalgia and national identity. As the Vice-president of the Swedish organisation Nordkonst she also manages cultural projects and conducts research on cross-cultural artistic practices and intercultural communication.
- contact: email@example.com
Even though the sentimental longing that we commonly associate with the term “nostalgia” is probably as old as humankind, I am particularly interested in the idea of nostalgia as a affective mnemonic practice that manifests itself in (or attaches itself to) today’s (digital) media artefacts, aesthetics, and technologies. With an academic background in film studies and art history, my research focuses on (audio-)visual media as means to retrieve and reappropriate the past, or, more precisely, our ideas of an imagined past. The complex relationship between an ever-accelerating digital media culture which permeates our everyday lives and an equally strong, almost omnipresent fascination with former times and places strikes me as a characteristic context for today’s nostalgic reminiscence(s). In my PhD project, I am trying to unravel common myths about (contemporary forms of) nostalgia, and I hope to be able to show how various modes of our affective engagement with the past become relevant to present realities.
Mirjam Kappes is a PhD student in media-cultural studies and scholarship holder at the a.r.t.e.s. Graduate School for the Humanities Cologne (Germany) where she is working on her current research project “Media-nostalgic Reminiscences in Today’s (Post-)Digital Era” (working title). She has studied Media & Communications, German Literature and Art History in Germany, Switzerland and the UK and received her master’s degree with distinction at the University of Hamburg/Germany in 2012. Prior to her graduate studies, Mirjam Kappes has worked at CineGraph, a Hamburg-based Institute for historical film research, as well as in journalism, public relations and communications. Her research interests include digital media and nostalgia, transmedia storytelling, visual discourses in urban space, and media aesthetics with focus on photography and film.
- contact: mirjam.kappes (at) uni-koeln.de
I am interested in the mediatization of nostalgia and the usage of emotions in constructing collective (national and ethnic) identities. I am trying to understand how personal memories are shared in social media and the ambiguous ways the past is interpreted and appropriated. I see these practices of sharing memories as a process of building a virtual archive. It is used as a social capital that reinforces a feeling of belonging to a group on the bases of identification with a common past.
Slavka Karakusheva is a doctoral candidate at the Department of History and Theory of Culture, Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski. She holds a master degree in Cultural Anthropology and a bachelor of Cultural Studies. Her research focuses on the influence of social media on the processes of construction of ethnic and national identities. Slavka is an assistant editor of Seminar_BG – an online journal for cultural studies and was recently a TUBITAK visiting fellow at the Cultural Policy and Management Research Centre, Istanbul Bilgi University. Her research interests include ethnicity and nationalism studies, memory, migration, anthropology of media.
- contact: slavka.karakusheva (at) gmail.com
Though my interest in nostalgia finds its origins (and its continuing impetus) in a desire to understand its contemporary cultural expressions of the kind considered in, for example, Simon Reynolds’ Retromania, my research has led me to an extended study of the history of the term from the famous dissertation of 1688 to the present day, with a focus on the particular discursive formation that has developed over the course of the last fifty-odd years. My dissertation has, broadly, two principal goals: to put the standard “history of nostalgia” back into question by examining a number of striking lacunae, and to integrate that re-examined history into the conceptual toolbox of the philosophy of history, notably that of Marcel Gauchet as well as the contemporary French inheritors of the German “conceptual history” (Begriffsgeschichte) tradition stemming from Reinhard Koselleck. Put simply, my central contention is that it is no coincidence that the term “nostalgia” only arises in modernity, for nostalgia is a distinctly modern affect which evolves in lockstep with the evolution of modernity itself.
Alexei Kazakov is a PhD student in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Ottawa (Canada). He obtained his master’s degree in Philosophy in 2018 following the defense of his thesis, “Exclusion and Legitimacy: A Critical Examination of Alasdair MacIntyre’s Concept of Practices Applied to Philosophy”. Beyond nostalgia, his interests lie in the broad category of “modernity”, which has led him to engage extensively with Anglo-American post-analytic social philosophy (Alasdair MacIntyre, Charles Taylor, Bernard Williams, etc.), phenomenology, and the social sciences.
- contact: akaza070 (at) uottawa.ca
My interest in nostalgia emerged from my doctoral research. My research involved spending time talking to women of different generations and social backgrounds about the ways in which they remember in their everyday lives. Nostalgia was a crucial part of their activity. While on the one hand it became apparent that this mode of relating to the past involved complex transactions between past, present and future in which relational temporal valuations were made and remade by women in creative ways, on the other hand the writing about nostalgia at that time (now over a decade ago) seriously undervalued the creative potential of this mode of relating to the past. In my research since then with my colleague Michael Pickering, we have been concerned with redressing what seems to us to be an underestimation of nostalgia and its complexities, and we have tried to make sense of the ways in which a mixture of loss, lack and longing are played out in nostalgic remembering. We have also developed the concept of retrotyping through which we have attempted to explore the ways in which nostalgia can be commodified and commercially appropriated and its creative potential stymied. We continue to be fascinated by this most routinely dismissed dimension of vernacular remembering.
Emily Keightley (born 1981) is Senior Lecturer in Communication and Media Studies in the Department of Social Sciences, Loughborough University, UK. She received her PhD from Loughborough University in 2007 and has worked in the Department of Social Sciences since that time. She is also Associate Editor on the international journal Media, Culture and Society. Her main research interest is memory, time and its mediation in everyday life. She is particularly concerned with the role of media in the relationship between individual, social and cultural memory and the temporal structures of modernity.
- contact: E.Keightley (at) lboro.ac.uk
My work on nostalgia considers how it emerges in juxtaposed texts and exchanges between cultures, with particular attention to how film adaptation frames and activates nostalgia. Like other media multiplicities – including remakes, spinoffs, and sequels – adaptation can be understood as both creative practice and commercial product. I’m interested in exploring each of these angles, along with audience reception, to gain perspective on the personal and social functions of mediated nostalgia.
Colleen Kennedy-Karpat teaches in the Department of Communication and Design at Bilkent University, Ankara, Turkey and holds a PhD in French from Rutgers University, New Jersey, USA. Her writing has appeared in Adaptation, the Journal of Popular Film and Television, Camera Obscura, and several edited anthologies, including The Films of Wes Anderson (Palgrave 2014), A Companion to the Biopic (Wiley 2019), Female Agencies and Subjectivities in Film and Television (Palgrave 2020), and her own collection Adaptation, Awards Culture, and the Value of Prestige (co-edited with Eric Sandberg, Palgrave 2017). Her monograph Rogues, Romance, and Exoticism in French Cinema of the 1930s (Fairleigh Dickinson 2013), won the Northeast Modern Language Association Book Award. Dr. Kennedy-Karpat’s most recent work includes multiple video essays (hosted at https://vimeo.com/cbkenkar) — including “Genre/Nostalgia/Quintana,” co-created by Wickham Flannagan, which examines transnational remaking as an expression of nostalgia – and a special issue of Adaptation on the topic of Adaptation and Nostalgia (December 2020). She studies national and transnational cinemas, media adaptations, stardom, and genre.
- contact: kenkar (at) bilkent.edu.tr
My interest on nostalgia emerged while studying the relationship between history, politics and space. I am particularly interested in the uses of nostalgia, especially in relation to the processes of urban modernization and everyday nationalism. For my PhD dissertation, I studied the urban nostalgia on Istanbul in popular culture of ’50s and ’60s Turkey; how this popular Istanbul nostalgia petrified a nationalized history of Istanbul.
She holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in American Culture and Literature from Başkent University, Turkey where she also worked as a research assistant. She wrote her MA thesis on the cultural production concerning Generation X, the American youth of 1980s and 1990s. In 2016, she received her PhD degree in Communications from Ankara University, Turkey. In her doctoral dissertation, she studied the urban nostalgia of İstanbul in the mid-20th century. She is working as a lecturer at Kocaeli University and teaching courses such as “American Literature”, “Film and Literature”, and “Cultural Studies”. Her recent research interests include memory studies, popular culture and media history. She is also a member of European Network for Cinema and Media Studies and Association for Cultural Studies.
- contact: gulbin678 (at) gmail.com
We make technology good by digging into the humanity of its users—I’ve often found that nostalgia is the perfect spade for this task. Much of my research seeks to democratize and humanize technological design, getting more people involved in the production of tech and improving the ways in which designers and their users communicate—from Facebook UX, to hospital forms, to digital writing classrooms. Despite misconceptions of technology as principally future-oriented, all citizens imagine good futures from what they esteem about good pasts. Thus, I ask questions like: Why are citizens of the 21st century so nostalgic for old technologies, traditions, and ways of knowing the world? How can technological innovators who are concerned with creating inclusive futures better engage traditional communities that are resistant to novelty and (because of this hesitancy) habitually left out of the design of the world? What can designers learn from the ways that technology users at the edges of progress use nostalgia to contest new designs and reshape their lives? And, in light of such defiance, what does the democratic design of technology pragmatically look like in our current nostalgia boom?
Will Kurlinkus is an Assistant Professor of English and the Director of Technical Writing and Communication at the University of Oklahoma. His research examines the intersections of rhetoric, human-centered design, technical writing, digital culture, and nostalgia and has been included in journals including College English and Computers and Writing and essay collections like Rhetoric and Experience Architecture. His book Nostalgic Design: Rhetoric, Memory, and Democratizing Technology examines nostalgic cultures, from knitters who program software to vaccine-hesitant parents, to demonstrate how nostalgia might be harnessed to welcome communities into co-design that haven’t been well served by innovation in the past.
- contact: wkurlinkus[at]gmail.com
What first sparked my scholarly interest in nostalgic media was my experience as a second-year film studies student watching The Saddest Music in the World, a 2003 film directed by Canadian experimental filmmaker Guy Maddin. At the time, I was struck by the film’s distinctive aesthetic quality. The film, as with virtually all of Maddin’s work, seems to evoke a sense of pastness beyond simply its historical reference to the age of silent-era and part-talkie cinema. I was charmed and intrigued by how this particularly spectral and hyper-artificial audiovisual quality seemed to stage – and even evoke in me – a sense of nostalgia. In my master’s thesis I interrogated how and why this is the case in order to propose a theory of nostalgia with applications to the plastic and digital arts alike.
Zoë Anne Laks completed her Master of Arts in Film Studies at the University of British Columbia in 2018. Her thesis, On Longing for Loss: A Theory of Cinematic Memory and an Aesthetics of Nostalgia, explored audiovisual nostalgic aesthetics through the lenses of melodrama and spectrality theory. She is interested in the intersection point between memory and media, including its affective, philosophical, and temporal dimensions. She is currently researching representations of non-human and object-oriented memories in film and new media.
- contact: zoe.anne.laks[at]gmail.com
My interest in nostalgic media research began when I realized that I was the primary demographic target for so many of the media products being released that were aimed at engendering a longing for the past. Suddenly, everything I loved when I was young, from Transformers to DuckTales to countless remade films from the 1980s, was back in the cultural Zeitgeist as if it had never left. I began to think about what kind of relationship media companies wanted us to have with our own pasts, and the economic benefit of encouraging a kind of perpetual focus on whatever constellation of media texts we personally loved long ago. Turning my researcher eye towards something I personally feel susceptible to has been a common thread in my academic career, and working towards an understanding of what types of nostalgic longing media companies make available on a consistent basis fits right in.
Ryan Lizardi is an Assistant Professor of Digital Media and Humanities in the College of Arts and Sciences at SUNY Polytechnic Institute. Ryan’s primary interest is examining the way media contributes to our understanding of collective and individual histories by presenting consumers with consist messages about our past and present culture. This throughline has informed projects throughout his academic career, such as his book Mediated Nostalgia as well as his published chapters on television remakes, apocalyptic time travel media, and zombie depictions throughout history. The projects he is currently working on include an analysis of Nintendo’s nostalgia-based commodification of characters, as well as an exploration of current modes of engaging the past through contemporary digital sharing means.
- contact: lizardr (at) sunyit.edu
My interest in nostalgia is closely related to my research into possible and (un)imaginable futures within the context of Soviet and post-Soviet Russian cinema. As a researcher, I first encountered nostalgia as a common attribute of contemporary interpretations of Soviet myths and of the futures they envisaged. At the same time, I found out that these contemporary reappropriations of a past’s futures also often manage to articulate apparently nostalgic aesthetics, formats, genres and tropes with new, previously unimaginable meanings. Therefore, I came to regard the intersections between nostalgic content, aesthetics, and media as potential generators of disruption within our horizons of expectations, and, following Jacques Rancière, the common distribution of the sensible.
Natalija Majsova is a postdoctoral researcher at the Catholic University of Louvain (UCL) and adjunct assistant professor of cultural studies at the University of Ljubljana. At UCL, she is part of B-magic – an EOS-funded consortium project on the magic lantern and its cultural impact in Belgium (1830-1940). Her research focuses on the narratological, semiotic and iconographic specificities of lantern slides and their contribution to the formation of transnational popular-cultural iconographies of the world. Her first book, The constructor, aesthetics and the cosmonaut: outer space in contemporary Russian cinema (2001-2017), was published in Slovenian by University of Ljubljana/FSS Press in 2017. She is currently finishing her new monograph, Memorable futures: Soviet Science Fiction Cinema and the Space Age, which is forthcoming with Lexington books in 2020.
- contact: natalija.majsova (at) uclouvain.be
I am interested as an artist in the relationships between memory and media, specially about how to visualize the fabric of its mechanism, why we remember and forget, and how this process constitutes our identity. The nostalgia for the lost home, the paradise of the childhood, the idealized past that will never come back are recurrent topics in my artwork. As researcher, I have explored the rhetoric of obsolete media following the methodology of media archaeology, tracing the framework where past and present are connected through re-activated old media. So, the obsolete media devices and their records –pictures, movies…– would constitute a way to connect with the past, a form of nostalgia.
José Vicente Martín Martínez is a professor in Painting and a researcher at Miguel Hernández University (Spain). His artwork has been shown in several solo exhibitions in Spain, Germany, Italy, USA and Sweden, highlighting Memorial, Fish Market, Alicante (Spain), 2017 and The end of the biography, University of Umea, Sweden, 2018 as connected with nostalgia. His academic research focused on the concept of history, tradition and revival in modern art. During the last years, this topic has found in media archaeology a proper methodology to explore the connections between personal memory and technology.
- contact: jv.martin (at) umh.es
With J.D Salinger´s books, contemplating Joseph Cornell´s boxes, watching a Wes Anderson film or listening to The Smiths. My interest for nostalgia emerged with the aesthetic experience I felt through the art I loved. I am interested in the study of nostalgia as an aesthetic emotion from a narrative account. C.S Lewis wrote that emotions ‘need not a map but a history’, especially nostalgia that has to do with past actions. I undertake this everyday emotion not only as an idealization of the past but as a complex sentiment that has to do with personal identity and biographical memories. My research explores the implications a narrative and visual analysis of ‘New Sincerity Cinema’ has in the aesthetic discussion about the relevance of nostalgia as an emotion accused of sentimentality. My aim is to defend that this quirky cinematographic movement characterized by a precious aesthetic and the representation of ordinary situations, embodies a reflective nostalgic sensibility committed to the portrayal of deep and sincere emotional feelings. Self-knowledge and moral evaluation are some of the aspects that I wish to relate to nostalgic experiences.
Irene Martínez Marín (born 1990) is a Philosophy doctoral candidate at the University of Murcia (Spain). She holds a Masters in History of Contemporary Art and Visual Culture from the Autonomous University of Madrid and MNCARS (2014). Her doctoral dissertation “Nostalgia as an aesthetic emotion and its representation in New Sincerity Cinema” focuses on the work of a group of contemporary independent filmmakers (Wes Anderson, Richard Linklater, Sofia Coppola) in order to analyze how nostalgia colors this cinematographic movement. Her research interests include philosophy of emotions, cognitive film theory, the paradox of fiction, and the relationship between aesthetic and ethic value in narrative artworks.
- contact: ire.martinezmarin (at) gmail.com
My interest in nostalgia includes several social and cultural aspects. Nostalgia indeed concerns an emotional state linked to personal situations, as well as to social groups sharing memories and emotions related to the past. In the field of media productions, we see that nostalgia is presented through different shapes and forms, producing emotional effects in the audience. A question that needs to be investigated inside the field of Media Studies.
My study of nostalgia is mainly related to TV series, which have recently become the leading products of medial proposals. They use to include stories located in the past or based on the loss of something or someone. Studying TV series as cultural texts, we see that nostalgia is used as a narrative strategy that works both as a relevant element of television complexity and as an opportunity to attract different kinds of audiences. Sharing nostalgia feelings, in fact, means belonging to specific groups, which are distributed according to age or to cultural affiliation.
In addition to a textual analysis of TV series, considering today context of cultural convergence, my study also includes a section dedicated to audiences’ activities and to nostalgia effect, especially in online spaces.
Antonella Mascio is Assistant Professor of Sociology of Cultural and Communication Processes and she teaches in the Communication and Fashion Programmes at University of Bologna. In recent years she focused her researches on online social relations and on relationships between the Internet and Tv Drama. Her publications include Virtuali Comunità (2008), Fashion Games (2012 ed.) and many articles dedicated to Tv Series. Her current research examines Tv Series and online audiences.
As a media and communication scholar rooted in social sciences, I am interested in the relationship of media and nostalgia on a societal level. How does media change affect nostalgia in contemporary societies, what is its purpose for individuals, communities, and the society at large? How are media, memory and communication involved? I wrote my dissertation about the relationship of media, nostalgia and digital publics to answer these questions especially under the assumption that nostalgia is a reaction to change and the subsequent feelings of loss evoked in people. Media are included in this approach not only as technologies of mediation but in their interrelation with culture and society and their potential as agents of change. Hence, possibilities and limits of communication emerging through media change contribute to different nostalgic mnemonic practices and influence who is included in the mediated negotiation of the past. In my understanding, it is important to contextualize the nexus of media and nostalgia in past and contemporary societies and go beyond the social sciences perspective by integrating established philosophical and historical conceptualizations of nostalgia.
Manuel Menke is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Communication at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark. From 2018 to 2020, he was an Assistant Professor at the Department of Media and Communication (IfKW) at LMU Munich, Germany. He did his PhD and worked as a postdoc from 2011 to 2018 at the University of Augsburg in Germany after he studied communication and politics at the German Universities of Mainz and Bamberg. His research interests comprise (theories of) social and media change, media and nostalgia, memory and narratives in media and public sphere(s), and journalism research. He is co-founder of the International Media and Nostalgia Network (IMNN) and has published several articles, chapters, and a dissertation about media and nostalgia.
- contact: manuel.menke (at) hum.ku.dk
My academic interest in nostalgia began as a way to cope with, and perhaps understand, the nostalgia I was feeling (and, often, I still feel) for places, times and most of all people lost. My current project deals with nostalgia as a foundational trope of the contemporary Jewish literary imaginary, with particular reference to the Jews of the Arab world and their descendants. I am interested in nostalgia insofar as it emerges in literary and autobiographical writings, but also in other medias like cinema and the Internet. Even though I doubt that this project will cure my own nostalgia, at least I hope it will offer a contribution of some sort to the cultural and historical understanding of this feeling.
I am Lecturer in Modern Hebrew and Jewish Studies at the Department of Asian and North African Studies, Ca’ Foscari University of Venice and a Member of the Board of SeSaMO – Italian Society of Middle East Studies. I hold a PhD in History from the European University Institute, Fiesole and before joining Ca’ Foscari I was postdoctoral fellow at IREMAM, Aix-Marseille Université and at the French Research Centre of Jerusalem. I have published two books – Histories of the Jews of Egypt: An Imagined Bourgeoisie, 1880s-1950s (2015) and La letteratura israeliana mizrahi (2016) – and articles dedicated to the cultural history and memory of the Jews of Egypt and North Africa, and to Israeli literature. I am the editor of Memory and Ethnicity: Ethnic Museums in Israel and the Diaspora (with Emanuela Trevisan Semi and Tudor Parfitt, 2013) and Contemporary Sephardic and Mizrahi Literature: A Diaspora (2017).
- contact: dario.miccoli(at)unive(dot)it
I have been working on several films and media projects with a focus on memory and nostalgia, including “Wistful Affection for the Past” (2013), “Private Nostalgia” (2014), and “Strata of Memory” (2016-19). Currently, I am more interested in the unstable processes in technologies of recording memory (both analog and digital) that can give fourth to nostalgia in media through a materialist perspective. In my film career, oral history and revisiting individuals’ experiences of the past play a significant role.
Mani Mehrvarz is an award-winning non-fiction filmmaker, media artist, curator, and currently a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Media Study at the University at Buffalo, where he also teaches courses in documentary, video art and media theory. His media installations and documentary films have received recognition around the world in solo and group shows, juried festivals and screening programs since 2004 including Japan Media Art Festival, PERL Media Festival in Norway, Short Waves Festival in Poland, FIVA Video Art Festival, VIDEOGRAMA Video Art Festival, Chile Bienal de Artes Mediales, and Buffalo International Film Festival. Mehrvarz is the founder and director of Buffalo Documentary Project (a collaborative project to unfold the untold stories of Buffalo and WNY), and the co-founder and curator of Media-As-Things (a collective with a focus on media art practice-research). Of his publications in the context of nostalgia is: “Media-as-Things: A Nonhistorical Nostalgia Through Failure” (2019), co-authored with Maryam Muliaee, in Subjective Experiences of Interactive Nostalgia in Media (Ed. Ryan Lizardi). His project “Private Nostalgia” (2014) has been featured and reviewed in various scholarly publications including Ewa Wojtowicz’s book, Art In Post-Media Culture (2016), as a creative example of data base cinema along with several other contemporary projects such as Lev Manovich’s Soft Cinema.
- contact: manimehr[at]buffalo.edu
I am particularly interested in looking at the ways in which forms of ‘digital nostalgia’ are currently developing next to, and in relation to, instances of analogue nostalgia. How does digital nostalgia differ from analogue nostalgia? And what kind of particular characteristics of older digital formats, devices, and cultural practices are idealised, foregrounded, re-introduced and re-appreciated in today’s society? While my research mostly focuses on (popular) music and audio technologies, I am also interested in (digital) media in a broader sense, including social media, games, and film.
Maarten Michielse is a lecturer critical digital media practice at Lancaster University, UK. He is also currently the director of the Media and Cultural Studies programmes at Lancaster University. Michielse has published on digital remix and mashup practices in journals such as the International Journal of Community Music, IASPM Journal, and M/C Journal. In his research, Michielse makes use of a (virtual) ethnographic approach to study the way in which everyday users appropriate, remix, and redistribute cultural works in a digital era.
I am interested in the dynamics of media and nostalgia as nostalgia have proven to be the immediate affective response of many people when confronted with media technology and content from the recent past. Rather than viewing the nostalgic attitude to the past as something to be overcome, I view nostalgia as an affective investment in the past that can be built upon to facilitate further reflection and a more nuanced understanding of the past.
Christian Hviid Mortensen is a media historian and curator of media heritage at the Media Museum in Odense, Denmark. His research interest sits at the intersection of media studies, popular culture, memory studies, museology and the history of technology. He has curated diverse exhibitions on videogames, comic books, radio sound and reality TV. Christian sits on the editorial board of MedieKultur: Journal of Media and Communication Research.
- contact: CHRHM(at)odense.dk
I’m interested in nostalgia in relation to media materiality, and particularly within experimental film, analog video, and xerography practice. I’ve been growing a fascination in the concept of nostalgia in its possible connection to failure in media, material image, degeneration, absence and erasure. My work uses various experimental recycling methods to rework audio, photographic and filmic materials where themes such as nostalgia and affect are inevitably met.
Maryam Muliaee is a media artist-researcher living and working in Buffalo, New York. Her work is multidisciplinary, ranging from video/sound installations to experimental animations and locative media. Her current project/research explores how media can create urban imaginaries through embodied methods and feminist tactics. With a focus on the theme of media materiality, Maryam’s recent work conjugates nostalgia uniquely in the context of haptic image and archival art practice. Her “Recycled Series” project (2014-ongoing) that takes on the themes of degeneration, erasure and nostalgia was exhibited in “Make.Media.Matter” (2018) at UB Art Gallery, and “Media-As-Things” (2019) at El Museo Gallery in Buffalo, NY. In the context of media and nostalgia, she recently published a book chapter: “Media-as-Things: A Nonhistorical Nostalgia Through Failure” (2019), co-authored with Mani Mehrvarz, in Ryan Lizardi’s edited volume, Subjective Experiences of Interactive Nostalgia in Media. She is the recipient of the grant award 2019-2020 in UB Gender Institute Dissertation Fellowship for her doctoral project “Feminist Media Archaeologies as Counter-mapping”. Maryam currently serves as the editor for MAST (NeMLA’s new journal of Media Art, Study and Theory).
- contact: mmuliaee[at]buffalo.edu
What is home to you? What does it mean? Is it a place, person a thought or a thing? Is it acquired through journeys? Through language? Bricks and mortar? What is its relationship with notions of identity and nationality? These were the initial questions that drew me to nostalgia studies. Since embarking on an MA in 2016, and eventually a PhD to develop the ideas that had subsequently taken shape, I have directed my attention specifically to the notion of nostalgic space; its aestheticisation and substance as an ahistorical ‘other place’, its role within cultural and individual spheres, and its socio-political or cultural contexts.
Jenny Naish is a Ph.D. student in Literature in the Department of Media, Arts and Humanities at the University of Sussex (United Kingdom). She holds a master degree in Modern and Contemporary Literature, Culture and Thought from the University of Sussex and a bachelor degree in Drama and English Literature from the University of Kent (UK). She studies portrayals of female quixotism across time, the aestheticisation of nostalgic space, and how these two lines of enquiry intersect. Her research crosses various disciplines, including literature, history, folklore, gender and philosophy.
- contact: jn291 (at) sussex.ac.uk
In the winter of 2011, I was sitting with Céline and Olivier in a living room somewhere in Quebec and our conversations were filled with nostalgic thoughts of past and future times and distant places. We began talking about the incredible boom of these longings in the media and in social networks. On that very evening I decided to organise an international conference on the topic. It eventually took place in September of the following year at the University of Geneva under the name ‘Flashbacks-nostalgic media and other mediated forms of nostalgia conference’ and most of the proceedings but also invited papers were then published in the Palgrave Macmillan volume (memory studies series) “Media and Nostalgia“. The idea of the IMNN has emerged during a discussion at the IAMHIST conference in Bloomington 2015 and with Emmanuelle, Ekaterina and Manuel. Being certainly nostalgic myself from time to time, the reflection on media and nostalgia is related to my general research interests that deal with media and communication theory, memory, history as well as with media events their commemorations and their extensions in popular culture and arts.
Katharina Niemeyer is Professor of media theory at the University of Quebec in Montreal (UQAM), Faculty of communication – Media School. Previous positions:
- guest scholar at Media@McGill (February-June 2017)
- 2012-2017: Associate professor at the French Press Institute and member of the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research and Analysis of the Media (CARISM)/ University Paris 2, Sorbonne Universities
- 2006-2012 – PhD and Postdoc at the University of Geneva.
Katharina is a IAMHIST council member and associate editor of the Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television and on the editorial board ofMemory Studies. Her major areas of research are in the field of media culture, media and communication theory. She is particularly interested in analogue and digital media, (international) media events, media and terrorism, (collective) memories, commemorations and history. Katharina translated texts of Jean Baudrillard and Bernard Miège and is the IMNN webmaster.
personal website: www.kniemeyer.net
- contact: niemeyer.katharina (at) uqam.ca
The language of time is often relied upon to articulate the dissonances and contradictions that typify the post-apartheid South Africa. My research is focussed on post-apartheid nostalgia and the various ways that it intersects with identity and cultural practices. My background is in Art history & Visual Culture; therefore, my research is primarily guided by visual representation. I look into how the violent primal scenes of colonial- apartheid continue to calibrate the psycho-social life in South Africa suggesting a cyclical pattern of one state of unfreedom to the next. Post-apartheid visual culture is saturated by a nostalgia that is in tension with the future. My current research focuses on the role that visual devices play in facilitating perpetual returns and repetitions.
Zamansele Nsele (born in 1986) lectures in Art History & Visual Culture at Rhodes University in Grahamstown, South Africa. She is currently completing her doctoral thesis entitled ‘Post-Apartheid Nostalgia and the Future of the Visual Archive’.
- contact: zamanselensele (at) gmail.com
I’m fascinated by the many permutations and operations of nostalgia within contemporary culture. As such, my research explores nostalgia in a variety of contexts, including regional spaces, film and literary studies, and genres such as horror and science fiction. In my book on nostalgia and regionalism, I analyze the American Midwest’s place-identity and conceptualize three forms of nostalgia: what I describe as “nostalgic spatiality,” “nostalgic violence,” and “nostalgic atonement.” While developing these three concepts, I detail how nostalgia informs popular understandings of the Midwest and further reveal the aesthetic and thematic treatment of nostalgia in works of film and literature. In one of my recent articles, I examine the nostalgic dimensions of retroactive continuity (retconning), which is a revisionist narrative practice. Through an analysis of retcons in the Halloween film franchise, I identify ways in which nostalgia shapes the production, evolution, and reception of serialized narratives.
Adam Ochonicky is the author of The American Midwest in Film and Literature: Nostalgia, Violence, and Regionalism (Indiana University Press, 2020). His work has appeared in Adaptation, Horror Studies, Screening the Past, Quarterly Review of Film and Video, and Nineteenth-Century Literature. He contributed a chapter on Twin Peaks to an edited collection, Television Finales: From ‘Howdy Doody’ to ‘Girls’ (Syracuse University Press, 2018). Ochonicky also serves as the Media Review Editor for Middle West Review, which is an interdisciplinary, peer-reviewed journal devoted to the scholarly study of the Midwest; he edited a special dossier on the Fargo television series for the spring 2019 issue of MWR. He earned a PhD at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and is currently a full-time Lecturer at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, where he teaches courses on horror, surveillance cinema, science fiction, American literature, and regionalism.
- contact: aochonicky (at) gmail.com
I am interested in nostalgia and media, particularly in sexual and political contexts, because of the nostalgia’s ability to empower subaltern minorities. As I suggest in Queer Nostalgia in Cinema and Pop Culture (2014), a constructed gay nostalgia, often reflected by the New Queer Cinema in the 2000s and 2010s, redeems not only the film protagonists, but also the gay viewers’ lost youth. It is a nostalgia-in-motion, or what I define as motionostalgia, an ongoing process of change or movement in the perception, cultivation, reevaluation and rearrangement of time. The reimagining of the earlier periods, particularly the crucial stage of gay adolescence and transgressive coming-of-age repositions the subject in his/her interrelations with what happened before. In this respect, motionostalgia is a creative energy that provides an invaluable resource of hope, aspiration, well-being and optimism that empowers the viewers who experienced so much bullying and humiliations in their youth, or still experience daily hardship.
Gilad Padva works for Beit Berl College and the Open University of Israel. He holds a Master (with distinction) in Philosophy (Tel Aviv University). He obtained his Ph.D. in Philosophy, Cultural Studies and Cinema in 2007 (Tel Aviv University). His major areas of research are in the field of cinema studies, television and media studies, cultural studies, gender and sexuality studies and queer theory. He is particularly interested in the interrelations of cinema, popular culture and music, temporalities, spatialities and sexualities; with a focus on (collective) identities and (counter)cultural histories.
- contact: giladpadva (at) gmail.com
I started to investigate nostalgia by looking at the modalities in which the feeling is “practiced” by people in urban space, through rituals and unpredictable actions.
From my perspective, what is most interesting is how nostalgia is “performed” and “constructed” in the space, becoming a useful tool to understand political changes and the reversal of cultural and social values. If it is true that space always talks about the society which built it, when, through practices, it becomes a “space of nostalgia”, it tells us much more about the modality with which people rewrite (sometimes in a short-sighted way) their past.
Mario Panico is a Ph.D. candidate in Semiotics at the University of Bologna (Italy) and at TraMe – Centre for the Interdisciplinary Study of Cultural Memory and Traumas. His doctoral research, entitled “Nostalgicscape. A Semiotic Approach”, investigates the role of nostalgia in Italian spaces of memory. In particular, he is investigating the (neo) fascist nostalgic practices in Predappio, the hometown of Benito Mussolini.
- contact: mario.panico (at) gmail.com
My interest in the relationship between media and nostalgia is long abiding and stems from several areas of my academic work. Earlier in my intellectual career there was a focus on the uses of popular song and music as means of expressing nostalgic feelings and values, the various sources of attraction and appeal in popular traditions, and comparative presentations of past and present as a means of critique in working-class writing. More recently, with my colleague Emily Keightley, I have been concerned with two major manifestations of nostalgia in media representations. We refer to these as critical and regressive forms of nostalgia with, in the first case, nostalgia operating as a source of creative renewal or judicious mode of assessment of changed social conditions and arrangements, and in the second, nostalgia resulting in what we call retrotyping, which among other things leads to the foreclosure of imaginative uses of the past in the present as a result of an appeal only to sentimentalist yearnings for the past, especially in mass merchandising, consumerism and promotional culture. Our conceptual approach to nostalgia identifies three components – loss, lack, and longing – with the manifestation of nostalgia in media texts and images in any particular case depending on how these components are, or are not, aligned. Overall, my interest in differential forms of nostalgia is directed towards the development of a more refined understanding of the cross-temporal dynamics they entail both in and across time.
Following posts at Leicester University, Sunderland University (both UK) and Massey University in New Zealand, from 1992 I taught in the Department of Social Sciences at Loughborough University (UK). In March 2015, I moved to an Emeritus Professorship from which I continue to research and write in a number of different fields. My work covers popular music, racism and popular culture, imperialism and theatrical history, Mass Observation, working-class writing, news and documentary, stereotyping and representation, humour and comedy, creativity and cultural production, media and memory, conceptual history and historical hermeneutics. I have also written extensively on research methodology, including a co-edited collection on research methods in memory studies. I have published nineteen books as author or editor, and written over one hundred journal articles and chapters in edited collections.
In an age when nostalgia is omnipresent in the media, entertainment industries, and even in presidential elections, I feel compelled to understand the histories behind it. As a musician and musicologist, I find that music is central to many of those collective, urban, and popular displays of nostalgia. Yet, what constitutes musical nostalgia remains elusive and unstable. At best, “nostalgia” is a vaguely-used term when applied to music, as its meaning can change from ear to ear. My interest is therefore in the political, economic, and social forces that affect the collective reception of some types of sounds and musics as nostalgic in specific historical moments, especially when these forces reveal the discontinuities between various musical, social, and political milieus.
Tristan Paré-Morin is a Ph.D. candidate in musicology at the University of Pennsylvania (USA). He holds a B.Mus. in music history and music theory from McGill University (Canada). His research is centered on the relationships between art music and various genres of popular music and media (especially film, musical theater, and literature) in France and in America, mainly between the two World Wars. His dissertation explores the ways nostalgia was experienced and cultivated collectively in a variety of sonic and musical activities in the Parisian public sphere of 1920, and how these activities intersected with civic life, politics, urbanism, and nationalism.
- contact: tpare (at) sas.upenn.edu
Belonging to the generation who has had the opportunity to see the both worlds, my interest in nostalgia and notably Yugonostalgia comes from the deep personal need of understanding what has happened to Yugoslavia and how are we dealing with the Yugoslav identity today. Wishing the overcome the revisionist narratives of the official politics of memory, and the banalizing public discourse about the “transition losers”, I’ve decided to research a specific generation – the generation of last pioneers and to identify the subersive potential(s) of nostalgia.
Milica Popovic is a PhD student in Balkan studies at the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Ljubljana, under the mentorship of prof. Mitja Velikonja and co-mentorship of prof. Jacques Rupnik at Sciences Po Paris. She has a Master degree in Political Sciences from the University Paris 2 Pantheon Assas, while her bachelor degree in law was obtained at the University of Belgrade. Her research focus are issues of post socialist transitions and memory studies, notably issue of nostalgia in post socialist ex Yugoslav countries. Milica works as a freelance consultant on higher education issues and also is executive editor of the edition of Le Monde Diplomatique in Serbia and regularly publishes scientific articles and essays on the Balkans (Život umjetnosti, Etudes balkaniques, Fondation Jean Jaures, Peščanik, Zarez etc.), She lives between Belgrade, Ljubljana and Paris.
- contact: milica.popovic (at) sciencespo.fr
I am interested in nostalgia especially in the context of analogue media. This interest came about through research conducted towards my PhD, which investigates nostalgia in Neill Blomkamp’s (2009) film “District 9”, which I am interrogating particularly for how it portrays the landscape of Johannesburg. The study investigates the notion of place in the film and in photography and popular media in South Africa between 1994 and 2018, especially in relation to a poetics that I entitle nostalgic dystopia. This project has lead me to research analogue nostalgia, as well as reflective nostalgia, which is an ironic and self-reflective nostalgia I think may be at work in societies that are in a state of post-trauma.
Landi Raubenheimer is the module convener for Design Studies in the Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture at the University of Johannesburg in South Africa, where she also lectures. She is currently completing a joint PhD at the University of Gröningen in the Netherlands and the University of Johannesburg. She has published in South African and international journals and is also a practicing artist working in the medium of papermaking. Her research interests include photography, spectatorship, aesthetics and landscape painting traditions.
- contact: landir (at) uj.ac.za
I am interested in the representation of nostalgia through artistic mediums, specifically in film. I am particularly fascinated by the various forms nostalgia adopts, from William Faulkner’s novels to Tarkosvsky’s cinema. In my PhD thesis I will be highlighting the differences of representation depending on culture, place, historical time and/or artistic movement.
Marta Romero is a photographer, researcher and PhD student in Barcelona, Spain. Her research interests range from postmodern American cinema, film philosophy to Beat Generation literature, with a focus on women’s work. She is also interested in museums and cultural studies. She holds previous work experiences as an intern at the Museum d’Art Contemporary de Barcelona (MACBA) in the Exhibitions department, as well as collaborating and working in several art fairs in Madrid, while receiving her Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts from the Universidad Complutense of Madrid.
- contact: martaromero.lop (at) gmail.com
I am mostly interested in the aesthetics and experience of nostalgia, or what Fred Davis terms “a distinctive aesthetic modality in its own right”. I commenced research on nostalgic style in my Ph.D. dissertation from University of Edinburgh, Towards a Poetics of Nostalgia: The Nostalgic Experience in Modern Fiction (2012). An important aspect of nostalgic aesthetics is how media operate within multimodal and cross-sensorial categories in order to trigger nostalgic impulses in media receivers. I am also elaborating on the very definition and taxonomy of nostalgia, differentiating it from memory, dividing it into emotion and mood, and relating it to existential angst.
Niklas Salmose is Associate Professor of English Literature at Linnaeus University, Sweden, and member of the Linnaeus University Center for Intermedial and Multimodal Studies (IMS). He is currently part of the Nordic project “Nostalgia in Contemporary European Culture” financed by The Swedish Research Council. He is currently editing a special issue on contemporary nostalgia for the journal Humanities.
contact: niklas.salmose (at) lnu.se
My research project explores the preservation of media, cinematic and digital art forms through a theoretical framework of media archeology, archive theory, and media preservation. I am interested in the ephemerality, variability, and vulnerability of media art, but instead of looking at it as limitations, I am also seeing it as a potential for remediation in new and emerging formats. My research aims to interrogate how institutional archives are shifting their preservation and conservation methods in order to manage the constant cycle of obsolescence, disposable and changing technologies. Through various case studies completed over the last year, including at Vtape, Video Cabaret, and Cinemathèque Québécoise, I am currently in the process of identifying trends, protocols, strategies, and issues experienced by cultural institutions, while also thinking about alternative archival projects and digital community networks.
With a deep interest in community building and collaborative programming, Cleo Sallis-Parchet has coordinated and managed arts projects in Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver and Ottawa since 2012. Cleo is currently pursuing a Master’s Degree in Cinema and Media Studies at York University. Her research explores the preservation of new media and digital art and the role of the institution in archiving obsolete technologies, ephemeral art, and collective memories. Recently, Cleo worked as Education & Outreach Coordinator at InterAccess, a gallery and production studio in Toronto dedicated to supporting new media art practices. Cleo holds a BA in Art History and Film Studies from Concordia University.
- contact: cleosp (at) yorku.ca
My interest in nostalgia began in the context of a series of writing collaborations on media, history, and memory while pursuing my Ph.D. at the School of Communication and Information at Rutgers University. Specifically, these projects were concerned with critically examining representations of the U.S. experience of World War II in film, television, and computer games. My current interest in nostalgia includes media (primarily televisual) representations of specific periods in American history, the “re-booting” and relaunching of classic programs, and online discourses that romanticize various aspects and epochs of the past. I have more recently become interested in Albert Camus’s concept of ontological nostalgia – the longing for transcendent certainties in an age of fracture – and its mobilization within U.S. politics.
Andrew J. Salvati holds a Ph.D. in Journalism and Media Studies from the School of Communication and Information at Rutgers University. His research centers on the way in which American History has been presented in popular media, including television, film, podcasts, mash-ups, and computer games. His dissertation, “Small Screen Histories: Presenting the Past on American Television, 1949-2017” examines the ways in which the producers of historical documentaries and docudramas construct “usable pasts” that speak as much to the social concerns of the present as they do the past. His published work has appeared in the journals Rethinking History and the Journal of Radio and Audio Media. Andrew is also a co-founder and co-host of Inside the Box: The TV History Podcast.
- contact: andrewsalvati(at)gmail.com
I found nostalgia through memory studies. My research subject was, early in the decade, institutional memory. As a journalist, I was focused on the way media organisations – newspapers, radio-stations, tv networks, rebuilt their past, and, at the same time, the past of the society. Nowadays, I’m particularly interested in the relationship between media and nostalgia, but I also investigate marketing consumption and nostalgia. Recently, with my college professor Talitha Ferraz, I organized the first book about Nostalgia and Media published in Brazil, which is about to be released.
Lucia Santa Cruz is an Adjunct Professor at ESPM Rio, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, where she is a faculty member of Professional Master in Management of Creative Economy. Journalist, PhD in Communications and Culture, she leads the Research Group Lembrar, which studies memory and representation. Also teaches at undergraduate courses.
- contact: lucia.santacruz(at)espm.br
Linda Hutcheon (2000), writing about nostalgia, felt the need to confess: ‘I am utterly un-nostalgic […] a personality fault to which I must admit’. By contrast, I confess: I am a nostalgic, and I am a daydreamer. Intellectually, it was via an original fascination with utopia that I stumbled upon nostalgia. If utopia was relatively absent in the twenty-first century, as so many of the theorists I was drawn to claimed, nostalgia seemed to be everywhere. More than just a personal predilection, then, I started to engage with nostalgia as a cultural phenomenon. Were my own leanings in fact connected with ‘little daydreams’ (Ernst Bloch) being harboured by film enthusiasts, TV obsessives, readers and bloggers far and wide? Millions of tiny lights flickering to a tune that was just slightly off-kilter, not entirely contemporary with the lived moment? I also wondered how this nostalgic longing that seemed to permeate American popular culture connected with the bigger question that consumed me: where had utopia gone? Was it stuck somewhere in the past, where it could be re-lived only in endless media repetitions? And if so, what did that mean for the future? It was out of an attempt to make sense of some of these questions that my PhD emerged, in which I draw on Ernst Bloch to look anew at what Fredric Jameson calls the ‘nostalgia mode’ in contemporary American literature and culture.
Dr Nicola Sayers recently completed her PhD at the School of Advanced Study, University of London. She is now working on her first book, The Promise of Nostalgia: Reminiscence, Longing and Hope in Contemporary American Literature and Culture. More broadly, her research is concerned with bringing the work of various Frankfurt School theorists to bear in our understanding of contemporary literature and culture, and is focused especially on questions of nostalgia, memory, hope and utopia.
Besides more theoretical sociological interests, I am ardently interested in contemporary Western retro-culture and its sociological and cultural ramifications and consequences. It is my thesis that nostalgia plays an important part among other salient sensibilities in a contemporary popular culture which seems compulsively occupied with its own recent past. In recent work I have investigated into how nostalgia mixes with ironic or genuine appreciations of past cultural forms.
I am especially attentive to the collective side to nostalgic phenomena. This should be understood in a very concrete sense: Cultivating nostalgic sentiment generates collective bonds; the relation to the nostalgic object is (almost) always animated by collective ritual. I have analyzed these social and ritual aspects with a special regard to the question of mediation: Nostalgic objects may work as collective mediators holding together intimate and interactionist relations or more extended and anonymous collectives.
Bjørn Schiermer currently holds a position as Fellow at the Max Weber Centre for Advanced Cultural and Social Studies at Erfurt University. He gained his PhD from the University of Copenhagen, Department of Sociology in 2010. He has published numerous papers in the area of theoretical sociology and sociology of culture. For recent publications centered wholly or partly on the phenomenon of nostalgia.
- contact: bjornsa(at)gmail(dot)com
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Dominik Schrey is a research associate at the German Department of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). In the last years, he also held teaching assignments at the University of Usti nad Labem (CZ) and the Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design. For the fall term 2011, he was a Visiting Fellow in the Harvard University PhD Program in Film and Visual Studies, supported by a scholarship from the German Academic Exchange Service. Currently, he is working on finishing his PhD thesis on “Analog Nostalgia in Digital Media Culture” (supervised by Prof. Andreas Böhn, KIT, and Prof. Jens Schröter, Univesität Bonn). His research interests include media theory, media history and the wider field of memory studies.
- contact: dominik.schrey (at) kit.edu
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The topic of nostalgia and technologies has always been present in my life. I have been interested by analog photography and why people decide to go back to film photography and to the materiality of objects. At the same time, I’m a compulsive science-fiction reader, who was raised with books of, among others, Stanislaw Lem, Isaac Aasimov and Philip K. Dick, and science-fiction movies (such as Star Wars, Marvel universe, etc.). The look towards the future (of technologies and societies) is somewhat mixed with the feeling of nostalgia. While moving continents in 2019, from Europe to North America (Quebec), I realized that Montréal, where I currently live and work, is, at the same time, the site of fast-pace technology progress and a complete nostalgic vision of nearly European city, with its particular history. This move pushed me towards studying and researching on nostalgia and technology, technology and media and media and nostalgia.
Ola Siebert is a student-member of UQAM-CELAT. She obtained a Master degree in European Studies (history and cultures of Europe) from Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium. Her research focuses on alternative (future) history of artificial intelligence and nostalgia, intersection between feminity and masculinity, culture and technology. She is also interested in online nostalgic expressions and post-soviet nostalgia in Poland.
- contact: olasiebert (at) outlook.com
My interest in nostalgia emerged from my work on issues of seriality and on concepts and cultural practices of memory at the crossroads of cultural studies and the cognitive sciences. Phenomena of nostalgia and processes of memory share a dimension of seriality; that is, both work by ways of repetition and difference. Yet how can we distinguish nostalgia from other modes of memory? This is one of the questions I currently pursue as a member and spokesperson of an interdisciplinary group of scholars collaborating at the Zentrum für Kulturwissenschaft|Cultural Studies, University of Bonn (www.nostalgie-uni-bonn.de). Our research project “Nostalgia: Time-Spaces, Affects, Commodity Culture” aims to account for the history of nostalgia’s shifting forms and functions, to define a clear conceptual framework for the term, and to clarify its relation to ‘retro.’ How do time-spaces we deem ‘nostalgic’ emerge? How do forms and functions of nostalgia transform over time? How do retro aesthetics shape affects? And what role do media of reproduction play for the affinity of nostalgia and consumption? Nostalgic practices, we hold, make analytical inroads into fundamental processes of modernity and into a resistance against modernization – an argument laid out in our forthcoming essay collection Nostalgia: Imagined Time-Spaces in Global Media Cultures (ed. Sielke 2017).
Sabine Sielke is Professor and Chair of North American Literature and Culture, Director of the North American Studies Program and the German-Canadian Centre, as well as spokesperson of the “Zentrum für Kulturwissenschaft/Cultural Studies” at the University of Bonn. Her publications include Fashioning the Female Subject (1997) and Reading Rape (2002), 120 essays and book chapters, and 18 (co-)edited volumes, among them Knowledge Landscapes North America (2016) and American Studies Today: New Research Agendas (2014). Currently, she is working on projects on nostalgia, ecologies of knowledge, and issues at the crossroads of cultural studies and the sciences.
- contact: ssielke (at) nap-uni-bonn.de
Pain and connection has always been crucial to me. Fundamentally, my research looks at the ways in which individuals cope with the clash between their lives of the physical world and the ones lived digitally. Like nostalgia on the past that was and could have been (Boym 2001), this is not to say that there is a clear divide between what is ‘real life’ and what is not. Rather, I look at how socially isolated and withdrawing people cope with their living situations through the activities, relationships, and constructions they make in the digital world, and the divisions this social pain has caused internally. If people can define situations as real and it be real in its consequences, then the objects and digital lives from a player’s creative nostalgia should signal a loss that is both defined and real. Digital nostalgia is a key avenue to understand this experience. The narratives and connections surrounding these objects may provide a legitimate overview of a nostalgic’s desires and their social pain, following Katharina Niemeyer’s perspective-focused process of digital nostalgizing. In time, I hope to be able to develop a cohesive application of nostalgia, social pain, and people’s digital expression for mental health professionals and virtual world creators to create accommodating digital spaces not just for the socially isolated, but for all of us who for many moments during the day, retreat away to rely on the fulfillment of our digital lives. Simply, there can be productivity within possibility.
Richy Srirachanikorn is a MA Sociology student at Concordia University, Montreal, Canada. He earned his BA in Sociology from the University of British Columbia focusing on classical sociological theories of the self and what digital living means for this concept. His directed studies amounted to an original theory of the “Digitalized Other” applied to online classrooms during COVID-19. At Concordia University, he is furthering this research into a Master’s thesis on play, nostalgia, and loneliness, focusing on the Massively Multiplayer Online Game (MMO) Club Penguin, and how nostalgia has maintained the community and its players despite being officially shut down since 2017. Currently, he is setting up a student-led symposium on digital nostalgia “LOSTAGAIN” open for faculty, students, artists, and professionals to present or participate for February 4th, 2023 at Concordia University.
- contact: srirachanikorn (at) gmail.com
Website: The Digitalized Other
Although my primary research focus is more on the side of Television as a medium of (Trans)Cultural Memory, I came to realize over the last few months that nostalgia is, in many aspects, is very closely connected to this larger field. In this context, I am fascinated by the multitude of ways in which nostalgia has been and is used as a particular mode of audience engagement within the medium of televsion. Arguably, such modes of engagement are nothing new, since TV has always offered a window into the past that allowed us to escape the present. I see current TV shows – ranging from HBO’s Stranger Things to Netflix’ Narcos and Amazon’s The Man in the High Castle, just to name a few – as continuing in and re-combining elements of this trend. And this is what I’m currently deeply invested in.
Tobias Steiner is a part-time PhD candidate at Universität Hamburg’s Department of English and American Studies. His PhD project (working title: “Complex TV’s (Hi)Stories of Transnational Pasts: U.S. Period Drama as Medium of Cultural Memory”) focuses on an integration of the televisual medium into the context of Cultural Memory Studies through an analysis of US-American television series. Parallel to that, he works as a research fellow at Universität Hamburg’s Universitätskolleg. Tobias currently also acts as postgraduate representative of ECREA’s Television Studies section and is enthusiastic about all things Complex television, both as a fan and a Cultural Studies-focused academic. He has published essays in journals and edited collections, with topics ranging from the discursive construction of authorship in Quality TV, to the transcultural circulation of television format pilots (currently in pre-publication stage).
- contact: steiner.tvstudies (at) gmail.com
Our age has increasingly been an era of nostalgia, which inflects in numerous films, television and other media, but in retrospect has had a spectral relationship with my work in literary studies. My long-standing research into postmodernism, and considerations of its wake, show a society longing for an era of answers – an epistemological underpinning that has been deconstructed but not meaningfully replaced. A turn to nostalgia is one reaction to that phenomenon, and has increasingly been a focus of my research. As I begin to look at literature, and investigate the role it can have in cultural problems – such as identity construction and climate change – I am increasingly drawn to exploring the ways that nostalgia is activated and can be used to motivate a shift in discourse and action.
Matthias Stephan (Aarhus University, Denmark) researches primarily on postmodernism, and its implications in the Gothic, science fiction, and crime fiction. His work has appeared in Scandinavian Studies, Coolabah, and La Questione Romantica, and an edited collection entitled Netflix Nostalgia. His first book Defining Literary Postmodernism for the Twenty-First Century (Palgrave 2019) uses science fiction and detective fiction to explore postmodernism. He is general editor for Otherness: Essays and Studies, and coordinator of the Centre for Studies in Otherness. His current research is focusing on the role of literature, in particular cli-fi, can play in mitigating climate change – by using ecocritical theory, gothic affect, and nostalgia to encourage positive change.
- contact: engms (at) cc.au.dk
I am interested in nostalgia as a consequence of social instability under capitalism and a defense against it. How do the entrepreneurial ideologies of neoliberalism and the future-fetishizing rhetoric of Big Tech trigger nostalgia in the public? And what happens when our nostalgic reactions to traumatic events, like climate catastrophes and economic collapses, are then deliberately shaped and shared by media conglomerates and ruling elites? My research primarily investigates the nostalgia boom of the digital age, a time when nearly everyone has access to the sights and sounds of the past via communication technologies. The digital age is also the period in which the consolidation of major media conglomerates has resulted in nostalgic franchising and world-building. As a writer, critic, and emotional human being, I am committed to shattering the stereotype that nostalgia is essentially reactionary and, instead, demonstrating its reparative potentials in an era in which corporations and demagogues exploit it for their own gain.
Grafton Tanner is the author of The Hours Have Lost Their Clock: The Politics of Nostalgia, Babbling Corpse: Vaporwave and the Commodification of Ghosts, and The Circle of the Snake: Nostalgia and Utopia in the Age of Big Tech. His writing on nostalgia, capitalism, and technology has appeared in The Nation and the Los Angeles Review of Books. He is the writer and vocalist for the band Superpuppet.
- contact: graftontanner (at) gmail.com
I’m interested in nostalgia for pre-digital or analogue technologies. This interest stems from my ethnographic work among doomsday prepper communities, where concerns are regularly voiced about the frailty and unreliability of digital technologies in post-collapse scenarios. By contrast, analogue technologies are often described as more ‘robust’, ‘resilient’ and ‘built to last’. My research explores how these narratives intersect with larger cultural debates about growing societal dependence on digital technologies.
A.R.E. Taylor is a Lecturer in Communications at the University of Exeter, UK. He is an anthropologist of data and communications infrastructure and the Marconi Fellow in the History and Science of Wireless Communication at the University of Oxford. His research concentrates on the material infrastructure and labour that underpins digital services. He is especially interested in forms of unanticipated disconnection from the internet, arising from the failure and breakdown of internet infrastructure. He is an Editorial Assistant for the Journal of Extreme Anthropology and a founder of the Cambridge Infrastructure Resilience Group, a network of researchers exploring critical infrastructure protection in relation to global catastrophic risks.
Contact: a.r.e.taylor (at) exeter.ac.uk
Having worked as an archaeologist in Greece for a decade, nostalgia has been one of the core issues that have concerned me. The love for the ruined monuments and the anguish of re-creating an ideal past is part of Greek people’s idiosyncrasy, especially in an era of major worldwide social crisis that fosters the decline of cultural values. Nostalgia also came up during my doctoral research in Holocaust Museums. Initially, as I was researching the transmediation of memory from discourse to architecture, I realised that a common design element of the cases I was studying was the descent to a dark underground space, which constitutes a symbol of the descensus ad inferos (Nekyia), a metaphor of the bowels of the underworld, where, according to Jung, within the belly of the unconscious, the visitor makes contact with his ancestors and retrieves individual and cultural creation myths. As a result, he becomes a pilgrim who moves unrestricted through the boundless time- space continuum and, as Betsy Hall wrote, engages in a threefold meaningful and promising process of descent, dis-memberment and re-membrance. In fact, during the analysis of bodily and emotional reactions to architecture, visitors from Jewish Diaspora countries and Israeli descendants of survivors expressed a sense of restoring continuity and connection with their predecessors, and experienced their fragility. Such results certify the architect’s intensions- like Libeskind stated, he wanted his buildings to evoke a “spiritual and cultural longing”- and, accordingly, ascertain a close relationship between nostalgia and memory construction.
Xenia Tsiftsi (born 1985) is a Greek archaeologist and art historian, with experience both in field archaeology and in monument reconstruction and restoration. She holds a Master of Arts degree in Museum Studies and a Master of Architecture in Design, Space and Culture. Currently, she is a PhD researcher and Teaching Assistant at the School of Architecture at the National Technical University of Athens. Her research interests lie in politics of shaping collective memory and national/ community identity through the bodily experience of space. The particular focus of her research is on Holocaust memory construction through museum architecture across European countries. Her most recent publication is: ‘The Holocaust Metanarrative: from discourse to architecture’ in the “TRANSMEDIATING CULTURE(S)?” Special Issue of the Open Cultural Studies Journal (De Gruyter, 2017). She is also a member of the Memory Studies Association.
- Contact: xeniats85 (at) hotmail.com
I am interested in exploring how nostalgia is constructed and worked through different mediums from socio-political and cultural studies perspectives. I am particularly inerested in how contemporary cultural needs or ideological purposes constructs a nostalgia that reshape the past, as well as how personal narratives and collective memories reimagined each other in a non-western context. I want to bring in more anti-eurocentric approaches for media and nostalgia studies, considering countries where the impact of commercialism on state-controlled information systems are not same as western countries. In the future, besides visual communications like film, I wish to explore more about memory preservation/ construction in material culture and urban studies.
Mellow (Jueran) Wei completed their Communications and Philosophy undergraduate studies at the University of Southern California with an honor degree in Communications. Their senior thesis explored the contrasting nostalgia constructed in two important contemporary Chinese political films. They use critical discourse and textual analysis to deconstruct the medium and reveal the socio-political struggles behind their creations. In the future, they want to continue to examine the politics of nostalgia and memory from an interdisciplinary perspective, as well as the resistive power of alternative narratives against dominant texts.
- contact: mellowwei7 (at) gmail.com
My research on nostalgia flows from a longstanding interest in self-conscious emotions, in particular their vividness
Tim Wildschut is associate professor of psychology at the University of Southampton. He received his PhD from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His main research interest is in self-conscious emotions, in particular nostalgia.
- contact: R.T.Wildschut (at) soton.ac.uk
I’m interested in the intersection between nostalgia and popular culture, particularly in relation to screen and internet cultures. My PhD topic looked at recut film trailers—user-generated trailers that mash together footage from one or more existing sources to create a trailer for a film that won’t exist—through the lenses of anticipation and nostalgia. Since completing my PhD, I’ve been developing this interest in nostalgia in a number of ways. Firstly, through nostalgia for videotape and video stores, and more broadly through a project on media waste and memory. I am also developing my work on nostalgia in relation to online teen communities and publications.
Kathleen Williams is a lecturer in Journalism, Media and Communications at the University of Tasmania, Australia. Her research looks at the unintended or unexpected uses of media technologies, including the degradation and reevaluation of media objects.
- contact: kathleen.williams (at) utas.edu.au
Remembering all the things I used to do on a rainy Sunday 15 years ago makes me feel nostalgic. I used to “hang out” with my friends named Super Mario, Link, or Yoshi and if I was not allowed to do so, I decided to hang out with Simba, Son Goku, and Disney’s Gummi Bears. Today, these media heroes remind me of who I was and what was meaningful for me as a person with all the dreams I held back then. In my research I want to investigate how media (content) as some kind of artifact can provide human beings with meaning, reminding them who they were back in the past, and how this is related to the somehow ambivalent feeling of nostalgia.
Tim Wulf (born 1990) is associated researcher at the Professorship for Media- and Communication Psychology at the University of Cologne and research assistant at the Institute for Media and Communication Studies at the University of Mannheim, Germany. He holds a Master in Media Culture and Media Psychology (University of Cologne). His research interests are the psychological mechanisms and effects of nostalgia in a media context. What media characteristics affect their ability to function as artifact to elicit nostalgia and how do people psychologically benefit of nostalgia being elicited through media consumption?
- contact: wulf.tim (at) googlemail.com
6 thoughts on “members”