School of Drama, Music and Screen

Dr James Zborowski

Lecturer in Film and Television Studies



Tel: 01482 46 6907
Office: Larkin Building, Room 232


Selected Publications

Journal articles

(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

‘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.’The Routledge 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 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

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


My principal research objects are popular cultural texts (I have written work on British lifestyle television, British television sitcom, British broadcast horror, US ‘quality’ television, classical Hollywood cinema and country music lyrics).  My central aim is to account in detail for the properties and effects of these texts.  In pursuing this aim, I draw upon and try to synthesise in a scrupulous fashion the insights of a range of methodologies and research areas: cognitive science, cultural studies, evaluative criticism, historical poetics, material culture, media and broadcasting history and theory, narratology, phenomenology and the philosophy of aesthetics and of fiction.  I am interested in and try to remain attuned at all times to the vital metacritical issues of how academic disciplines and their histories shape i) their objects of enquiry, ii) the kinds of questions that seem worth asking of those objects, and iii) the kinds of answers to those questions that are favoured (these issues as they pertain to the histories of film and television studies are of particular interest to me).

I am currently revising my monograph on communication, distance and point of view in classical Hollywood cinema.

I am interesting in supervising doctoral research on film and/or television from perspectives that fit the principles outlined above.  


In 2014/5 I will be teaching 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) (co-taught with Dr Iris Kleinecke-Bates)


History of Hollywood Cinema (level 4, team-taught module)

Screen Nations (level 4, team-taught module)

Interpreting American Culture (level 4, team-taught module)

American Film and Society (level 4, team-taught module)


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.


I am currently Web Editor for the School of Drama, Music and Screen and Programme Leader for the BA (Hons) Film Studies programme plus a range of Media programmes.


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