This site will host the materials for the SCMS event, Slow Scholarship. We hope it will become a site for discussion and as a resource site around the topic of “Slow Scholarship” that is an alternative to the 24/7 labor model of the 21st century university.
The event seeks to discover and apply the tenets of slow scholarship to film and media studies academic production. Slow scholarship posits an alternative approach to producing scholarly work within academic institutions that increasingly demand more time. The groups planning this collaborative event want to create a space for film and media studies scholars of all professional levels to examine the difficulties of producing work in the accelerated time frames of academic institutions. The pressures to complete research, service, and teaching while attending to our personal lives, require a radical re-thinking of how we produce scholarship and to “slow” down time to create meaningful work in film and media studies. Worldbuilding, the collaborative creation of fictional world narratives, will provide a platform for the development of strategies that the panelists and participants can use in their professional lives.
Prior to the event, five triads comprised of graduate or emerging, mid-, and senior scholars will each create a “media object” on one of five categories: the Digital Mundane, Collaborative Pedagogies, Collaborative Production, the Archive, and New Work Policies, that will be distributed for review on a conference event website. At the event, participants will be divided into five “worlds,” each of which will create narratives based upon the prompts written by the panelists prior to the event. The groups will design their specific “world” narratives. Each world narrative will then be shared to the other groups, who will offer feedback and brainstorm strategies for developing a practice of slow scholarship in each of the world categories. The group’s work will then be translated into a collaborative online publication, a best practices space that offers resources on: adjunct instruction, family leave policies; collaborative projects; intergenerational mentoring; and managing teaching, service, and research responsibilities.
Based upon the model of slow scholarship, an approach to research and scholarly production that promotes a “feminist ethics of care” (Mountz, Bonds, Mansfield, et. al., forthcoming), the event will use a structured worldbuilding exercise to develop strategies to challenge the demands of the neoliberal university. The event will allow film and media scholars from all professional levels to identify strategies for making “time” and for a more generative, productive and collaborative approach to teaching, research, and writing. The worldbuilding exercise, in which participants design fictional narratives free of the constraints of institutional thinking, will create a shared space for expansive brainstorming for strategies to challenge institutional time.
The five categories that will form the basis of the “worlds” seek to address several issues facing film and media studies scholars at various professional levels. The “Digital Mundane” will explore the use of “mundane” or everyday digital technologies to foster interdisciplinary work in a community of digital users, with the outcome of an ongoing digital humanities project that exceeds the time and space limitations of traditional publication. In “Collaborative Pedagogies” we seek to find strategies for facilitating access to materials online; to collaborate in the creation of film and media studies syllabi; and to identify best technologies, spaces, and practices to foster these collaborations. The “Collaborative Production” category will promote expansive thinking upon the sites of academic production and distribution. The “Archive” category will focus on the location/sites of the archive (physical and digital), and the resources and time required to conduct archival research. The “New Work Policies” category will consider ways of articulating new values for the kind of scholarly work we wish to produce. This category will posit new timelines, policies, and structures that support women, working class, and underrepresented scholars within the academy.