James Zborowski University of Hull

By | 16th June 2017

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James Zborowski University of Hull

James Zborowski University of Hull






James ZborowskiProfile

I joined the University of Hull in 2010, after completing a BA in Film and Literature, an MA in Film and Television Studies and a PhD in Film Studies in the Department of Film and Television Studies at the University of Warwick.

I have published and presented on a wide range of topics from within and beyond film and television studies, but with principal focuses on classical Hollywood cinema and recent British and US television. My research explores various issues of point of view and communication in film and television. I have a particular interest in fictional characters, and the critical and philosophical issues that surround them.

Selected Publications


  • Classical Hollywood Cinema: Point of View and Communication. Manchester University Press, 2016.

Journal articles

  • ‘Television aesthetics, media and cultural studies and the contested realm of the social.’Critical Studies in Television 11.1 (2016): 7-22.
  • (Co-authored with Amy M. Davis and Jemma Gilboy.) ‘How time works in The Simpsons.’Animation: An Interdisciplinary Journal 10.3 (2015): 175-88.
  • (Co-authored with Tom Steward.) ‘(G)hosting Television: Ghostwatch and its Medium.’Journal of British Cinema and Television 11.2-3 (2014): 189-212.
  • (Co-authored with James MacDowell.) ‘The Aesthetics of “So Bad It’s Good”: Value, Intention and The Room.’Intensities: The Journal of Cult Media 6 (2013).
  • ‘Can you see yourself living here? Structures of desire in recent British lifestyle television.’NECSUS 2 (2012).
  • ‘Beyond the Male Gaze: Departures from Scottie’s point of view in Vertigo.’ CineAction 84 (2011): 13-23.
  • ‘The Rhetoric of The Wire.’Movie: A Journal of Film Criticism 1 (2010).

Chapters in edited collections

  • (Co-authored with Pete Falconer.) ‘Townes Van Zandt: “Now here’s what this story’s told.”‘ Walking the Line: Country Music Lyricists and American Culture. eds. Thomas Alan Holmes and Roxanne Harde. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2013.
  • ‘The presentation of detail and the organisation of time in The Royle Family.’ Television Aesthetics and Style. eds. Jason Jacobs and Steven Peacock. London: Bloomsbury, 2013: 125-34.

Recent conference papers

  • Roundtable convenor and chair: ‘Teaching the Whedonverses.’ Slayage, Kingston University, Sunday 10 July 2016.
  • ‘Filmic point of view and the representation of character interaction.’ Presented at Film-Philosophy, St Anne’s College, University of Oxford, Wednesday 22 July 2015.
  • ‘Representing the everyday in Coronation Street (1960 and 2013).’ Presented at Spaces of Television, University of Reading, Thursday 19 September 2013.
  • ‘Broadcasting, Horror and Children: the case of Ghostwatch (BBC, 1992).’ Presented at Childhood and the Media (25th IAMHIST conference), University of Leicester, Wednesday 17 July 2013.
  • ‘Structures of Alignment: Jack Regan on screen and page.’ Presented at ‘You’re Nicked!’ The Sweeney and Crime Drama in British Film and Television, University of East Anglia, Friday 21 September 2012.
  • ‘Hitchcock’s Theory of Mind: Dial M for Murder as false belief test.’ Paper presented at Film-Philosophy, King’s College London, Thursday 13 September 2012.
  • ‘Amanda Price as author figure, fan and critical reader in Lost in Austen (ITV, 2008).’
    Paper presented at ‘Viewer, I married him’: Reading (Re)Productions of the Long Nineteenth Century in Period Drama, University of Hull, 29 June 2012.

Entries in reference works

  • ‘The Classic Realist Text.’ TheRoutledge Encyclopedia of Film Theory. eds. Edward Branigan and Warren Buckland. London: Routledge, 2013.
  • Entries on director Alexander Payne and films Adventureland (2009), Hollywood Shuffle (1987), Hoop Dreams (1994), Monster’s Ball (2001) and Sling Blade (1996) for the Directory of World Cinema: American Independent, Vol. 2. ed. John Berra. Bristol: Intellect, 2013.

Book reviews

  • Review of David Lavery, Joss Whedon: A Creative Portrait: From Buffy the Vampire Slayer to Marvel’s The Avengers (London: I.B. Tauris, 2014) and Rhonda V Wilcox, Tanya R Cochran, Cynthea Masson and David Lavery (eds), Reading Joss Whedon (New York: Syracuse University Press, 2014). Critical Studies in Television 11.1 (2016): 110-12.
  • Review of Paddy Scannell, Television and the meaning of live: An enquiry into the human situation (Cambridge: Polity, 2014). Critical Studies in Television 9.3 (2014): 115-6.
  • Review of Amanda D. Lotz, Cable Guys: Television and Masculinities in the Twenty-First Century (London: New York University Press, 2014). Journal of Gender Studies (2014).
  • Review of Melissa Ames (ed), Time in Television Narrative: Exploring Temporality in Twenty-First-Century Programming (Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2012) and Paul Booth, Time on TV: Temporal Displacement and Mashup Television (New York: Peter Lang, 2012). Critical Studies in Television 9.1 (2014): 117-9.
  • Review of Michael Z. Newman and Elana Levine, Legitimating Television: Media Convergence and Cultural Status (London: Routledge, 2012). Screen 53.4 (2012): 492-5.
  • Review of Hamilton Carroll, Affirmative reaction: New formations of white masculinity (London: Duke University Press, 2011). Journal of Gender Studies 20.3 (2011): 300-2.
  • Review of Robert J. Corber, Cold War Femme: Lesbianism, national identity, and Hollywood cinema (London: Duke University Press, 2011). Journal of Gender Studies 20.3 (2011): 302-4.
  • Review of Barry Keith Grant, Shadows of doubt: negotiations of masculinity in American genre films (Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 2010). Journal of Gender Studies 20.2 (2011):204-5.
  • Review of Andrew Britton, Britton on Film. ed. Barry Keith Grant (Detroit, Wayne State University Press, 2009). Screen 50:4 (Winter 2009): 450-3.

Reviewing and criticism

  • ‘Passing Time in Frances Ha.’Movie: A Journal of Film Criticism 6 (2015).
  • I am a long-term contributor to the website Alternate Takes, which attempts to ‘bridge the gap between reviewing and criticism.’ Most recently I have written about Austenland (2013), What Maisie Knew (2012) and Much Ado About Nothing (2012). Earlier pieces that I still particularly like include critical accounts of The Cabin in the Woods (2011), The Dark Knight Rises (2012), The Hunger Games (2012), It’s a Wonderful Life (1946), No Country for Old Men (2007) and Waitress (2007).

Personal blog

Between Sympathy and Detachment


I welcome research proposals in the following areas:

  • Characters in fiction
  • Point of view in fiction
  • Film and television narration
  • Film and television style
  • Analytical philosophy and film/television
  • Authorship and film/television


I am on study leave during semester 1 of 2016/7. In 2015/6 I taught the following undergraduate modules:

  • Reading the Screen (level 4)
  • Understanding Media (level 4)
  • Analysing Television Drama: Narration, Style and Themes (level 5)
  • Television, Radio and the Everyday (level 5)
  • Communication in a Globalised Context (level 3, co-taught module)
  • Research Project in the Humanities (level 3, team-taught module)
  • Screen Nations (level 4, co-taught module)
  • American Film and Society (level 4, team-taught module)
  • Interpreting American Culture (level 4, team-taught module)

I also supervise undergraduate dissertations.

  • In 2011/2 I taught two modules on the MA in Popular Cultures: ‘Theorising Popular Cultures’ and ‘Valuing Popular Cultures’.
  • In 2012 I won the Hull University Union Student-Led Teaching Award for ‘Best Feedback’.
  • In October 2013 I successfully completed my Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education, and in February 2014 I became a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.


Subject Group Head for Screen.


I am an occasional guest presenter for Hull Independent Cinema. In 2014 I introduced their screenings of Frances Ha (Baumbach, 2012) and Calvary (McDonagh, 2014). In April 2016 I introduced Vertigo and North by Northwest as part of their mini Hitchcock retrospective. I have also contributed to their website.

For the past three years I have been a guest judge at the Wyke ‘MAFTAs’, an event which recognises and celebrates the achievements of film and media students at Wyke Sixth Form College. For the past two years I have run a ‘Film Authorship’ workshop for Wyke students visiting the University.

I regularly participate in public screenings in association with the University. In 2012 I introduced A Short Film About Killing (Kieslowski, 1988) as part of the University’s Polish Season. In 2014 I introduced Lifeboat (Hitchcock, 1944) and then led a post-screening discussion as part of the University’s Conflict and Peace Film Season. During the 2015/6 academic year, under the heading of ‘Liberation’, I have introduced public screenings of Passport to Pimlico (Cornelius, 1949) and Roman Holiday (Wyler, 1953). I have played an important part in the planning, programming and delivery of ‘Middleton Movie Mondays’, which commenced in October 2016.

In July 2015 I participated in the University of Hull’s summer school, a week of events organised for around one hundred school leavers from the Yorkshire and Humber region.


Lecturer in Film and Television Studies

Email: j.zborowski@hull.ac.uk
Phone: +44 (0)1482 46 6907
Office: Larkin Building, Room 232