About this project
This project draws together social justice and cultural history to investigate modern slavery as a topic of film across the past twenty years. We anticipate that the project will focus on Anglophone productions (whether documentary and/or fictionalised feature films). The research will be undertaken with two aims. Firstly, it will investigate the production of film – while there have been a couple of big budget movies (eg Taken, 2008), has the topic of modern slavery been too controversial in other instances to attract mainstream investment? Secondly, researching both mainstream and independent media, it will consider whether such texts shed light on what we do / don’t call modern slavery, and what is filtered out of the popular press. The project will incorporate interviews with agencies that support victims of modern slavery for their views of these texts, seeking to access a broad range of opinions from organisations both local and national.
This PhD project is interdisciplinary, meaning that the successful candidate will be a part of the Faculty of Arts, Cultures and Education and the Wilberforce Institute for the study of Slavery and Emancipation. It aligns with the goals of the Wilberforce Institute of advancing fundamental knowledge of slavery and emancipation by understanding how popular representations of modern slavery impact understanding of the crime.
The successful candidate will join a vibrant, interdisciplinary research environment at the University of Hull's Cultures of Incarceration Centre (CIC) which is proud of its growing postgraduate community.
For informal enquiries, please contact Dr David Eldridge.
About the 'Transatlantic Cultures of Incarceration’ research cluster
Based in the Faculty of Arts, Cultures and Education, the Cultures of Incarceration Centre explores creative responses to the experience of incarceration across cultures and continents, with ‘incarceration’ applied to a host of historical and contemporary contexts, including prisons, pandemics, and modern slavery. Our work informs wider discussions of race, class, gender, humanity, and citizenship in countries across the world, and pioneers new interdisciplinary ways of working with colleagues from across subject areas and in collaboration with external partners and stakeholders.
Our students will play an active role in the Centre, whether by supporting the Centre’s research seminar programme, producing podcasts connected to student research projects, or mentoring MA Incarceration Studies students. Cultures of Incarceration Centre students receive expert supervision from a dedicated team of supervisors, and also benefit from access to pastoral and career mentoring opportunities. Students enjoy dedicated workspace within our on-campus resource room and at the Wilberforce Institute for the study of Slavery and Emancipation, based in Hull’s historical city centre.
Click here to watch a recording of our recent webinar about this funded postgraduate research opportunity. You'll hear from programme leaders, supervisors, and students and listen to queries from other applicants in the Q&A.
Other PhDs in this cluster
Modern Slavery in Literature: Searching for the Subaltern
Photographing the Incarcerated Flood Victim
Creative Practice & Incarceration: Writing Maternity Diaries
‘Shut up’: Pandemic Lockdowns and Health Inequalities, 1600 to present
Modern Slavery in Film: Producing and Representing Exploitation