Media History Seminar with Sean Cubitt

Please join us at the next Media History seminar for Sean Cubitt’s talk ‘Implications of Colour: Commodity, Biopolitics and Environment’. The meeting will take place at 6pm on Thursday March 3 in Senate House Room G37.

Here’s a brief overview of the talk:

In the late mediaeval and early modern period, colour was anchored to minerals, animals and plants and semantically organised. Its status was contested between the Enlightenment and Romanticism in an argument over its physical or psychological nature that would meet an almost accidental resolution in 1931. That resolution was itself spurred by the commodification enabled by synthetic dyes derived from coal and later from oil. The history of practices associated with and affordances of inks, dyes and pigments, the substance of the visual, allows us access to histories of standardisation and commodification that reveal contemporary relations between human, technological and natural worlds.

And a bio:

Sean Cubitt is Professor of Film and Television at Goldsmiths, University of London. His books include Finite Media: Environmental Implications of Digital Technologies (forthcoming 2016); The Practice of Light: A Genealogy of Visual Technologies from Prints to Pixels (2014); Digital Aesthetics (2009); The Cinema Effect (2005); Simulation and Social Theory (2001); Videography: Video Media as Art and Culture (1993); and Timeshift: On Video Culture (1991). He has also edited or co-edited Ecomedia: Key Issues (2015); Digital Light (2015); Relive: Media Art Histories (2013); Rewind: Artists’ Video in Britain 1970s and 1980s (2012); The Ecocinema Reader: Theory and Practice (2012); Studying the Event Film: Lord of the Rings (2008); The Third Text Reader on Art, Culture and Theory (2002); and Aliens R Us: The Other in Science Fiction Cinema (2002). You can read more about his research interests here:

All are welcome. Further information about the seminar is available through the Institute of Historical Research ( and the Institute of English Studies (


Media History Seminar Programme 2015-16

Here’s the schedule for this year’s “Media History” seminar jointly run by the Institute of English Studies and Institute of Historical Research. The seminars will take place at Senate House on designated Thursdays starting at 6pm. All are welcome.

“Media History” Programme 2015-16:

Meeting 1 (3 December 2015):

Dr Jamie Medhurst (Aberystwyth)

Senate House Room 104

Meeting 2 (21 January 2016):

Dr Matthew Philpotts (Manchester)

Senate House Room G37

Meeting 3 (18 February 2016):

Prof. Laura Marcus (Oxford)

Senate House Room 104

Meeting 4 (3 March 2016):

Prof. Sean Cubitt (Goldsmiths, University of London)

Senate House Room G37

Meeting 5 (12 May 2016):

Prof. Clare Pettitt (KCL) & associates

Senate House Court Room

Additional information about the talks will be provided later on. In the meantime, please save the dates.

This seminar is generously supported by the Media History journal, Queen Mary University of London’s English Department, the Institute of English Studies, and the Institute of Historical Research.