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Professor Shelley Cobb

Professor Shelley Cobb

Head of Department

Research interests

  • My interests include women filmmakers, women's films/chick flicks, gender and popular culture (esp Hollywood), celebrity studies, postfeminism and feminism in the media, contemporary Hollywood cinema, film and television adaptation, the figure of the woman author, and reception discourses. I have recently published on black women filmmakers who make romantic comedies, the politics of the chick flick and Trainwreck, and race in the sitcom Friends.
  • I welcome PhD applications on topics related to any of the above areas.
  • I have supervised to completion theses on British women directors and cinematic space; women documentarians working across film and television; literary celebrity in the 19th century; contemporary gothic fiction for adolescents, and authorship and adaptation of contemporary children's literature and film. My current PhD students are working on Black women and contemporary Hollywood cinema; Chinese chick flicks; East Asian celebrity and fandom; queer Black cinema; the war on terror and Hollywood cinema; gender and class in amateur filmmaking in the UK 1930-1950.

More research

Connect with Shelley

Research

Research interests

  • My interests include women filmmakers, women's films/chick flicks, gender and popular culture (esp Hollywood), celebrity studies, postfeminism and feminism in the media, contemporary Hollywood cinema, film and television adaptation, the figure of the woman author, and reception discourses. I have recently published on black women filmmakers who make romantic comedies, the politics of the chick flick and Trainwreck, and race in the sitcom Friends.
  • I welcome PhD applications on topics related to any of the above areas.
  • I have supervised to completion theses on British women directors and cinematic space; women documentarians working across film and television; literary celebrity in the 19th century; contemporary gothic fiction for adolescents, and authorship and adaptation of contemporary children's literature and film. My current PhD students are working on Black women and contemporary Hollywood cinema; Chinese chick flicks; East Asian celebrity and fandom; queer Black cinema; the war on terror and Hollywood cinema; gender and class in amateur filmmaking in the UK 1930-1950.

Current research

Most recently, I have published articles on gender inequality data in the film industry, Black women working in the British film industry, and oral histories of women filmmakers in the UK. I am completing articles on ageing and women in the British film industry, and women’s authorship, race and class in the television adaptation of Little Fires Everywhere.

My monograph, Adaptation, Authorship and Contemporary Women Filmmakers (Palgrave-Macmillan, November 2014) considers film adaptations directed by women that foreground the figure of the female author, through analysis of the films themselves, their reception, and discussion of the cultural and industrial contexts in which these films were released. My articles and chapters on women filmmakers, gender and contemporary Hollywood, film adaptation, and celebrity culture appear in a range of journals as well as edited collections.

I am the principal investigator for the large AHRC-funded ‘Calling the Shots: Women and Contemporary Film Culture in the UK’. The primary research (completed in 2018) included data collection of women working in key roles on film sets and a set of recorded interviews with women working in those positions. The research is the basis for published individual articles and some co-authored with my research partners Linda Ruth Wililams and Natalie Wreyford in The Journal of British Cinema and Television, Feminist Media Histories, and Women’s History Review. The website for the project – womencallingtheshots.com – houses our publicly available reports on the numbers of women working in the British film industry from 2003-2015, as well as information about our team and public impact. The research for Calling the Shots has had wide public awareness with stories in UK newspapers and continues to have impact on the continuing push for equality and diversity in the film and TV industries.

I am also the co-editor (with Neil Ewen, University of Exeter) of First Comes Love: Power Couples, Celebrity Kinship and Cultural Politics published by Bloomsbury in September 2015, and I am on the editorial board of the journal Celebrity Studies.

Research projects

Completed projects

Researchers:
Professor Shelley Cobb
Sponsor: Arts & Humanities Research Council
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