Addressing Mental Health and Disability Equality in the Creative Industries (AMH23) CFP


Hybrid Symposium, 19 July 2023 at De Montfort University, Leicester, UK.

AMH23 is a media, film, and creative arts symposium organised by MeCCSA’s Disability Network, MeCCSA’s Practice Network, and Evolution Film (which is funded by the British Academy). Our purpose is to examine the current and future role of mental health and disability equality across the global creative sector. This event will analyse the stresses and the challenges faced by those with mental health or physical disabilities within these jobs, and for anyone managing the circumstances that would help such colleagues’ reach their full potential.

We welcome submissions that address this burgeoning field of interest from local, national, international, and transnational perspectives and from a variety of industry-focused paradigms. The symposium welcomes submissions that break new boundaries in terms of format and presentation styles, and those which promote accessibility and inclusion for our audience. Submissions are welcome from colleagues within both industry and academia, and from those who focus on this topic in practice and through practice. Submissions are especially welcome from delegates and practitioners with disabilities themselves. Topics can include policy and legislation, creative practices and practice-based research, continual professional development (CPD), and pedagogy – in addition to the work of content producers, filmmakers and artists working across the creative sector. 

Abstracts and expressions of interest may include topics such as:

Industry history and futures, Teaching, CPD and pedagogy, PTSD and film/media production, Disability and film/media practice, Mental health and film/media production, Media production and practice-based research, The wider creative arts and areas of practice such as games and VR, Coping strategies and managing stress and challenges (both physical and

mental) associated with these kinds of jobs, Mental health issues or physical disabilities in the creative industries, [Mis]representation of disabilities e.g. stereotyping, stigmatisation, spectacle, etc, Discrimination, Policy and legislation, Trade Unions, Ethics, Positive approaches, Relationships with creativity, and Current/emerging practices and areas of interest.

300-word abstract biography due: 31 January 2023 via EasyChair

Full day, Hybrid Symposium 19 July 2023 at De Montfort University providing disability access, signers, and support.

Following the event, there will be opportunities to publish via a prominent academic journal and other recognisable outputs for the REF.

Please use the following link to access the EasyChair portal for abstracts.

Peace and Justice?

Participatory research in the Global South

Academics and activists review the conditions that determine the social fate of ordinary citizens and indigenous peoples in the Global South.

Using the framework of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, our speakers describe the success or otherwise of moral interventions in the sphere of governance and citizen collaboration, within co-created outreach and research projects that have used citizen testimony to explore relations between the state, the corporate sector, and indigenous people/disadvantaged citizens

Our speakers identify the conditions that enable or prevent the free communication of citizen perspectives and demands within national and trans-national political systems

Speakers at the seminar:

Glyn Pegler (Honorary Consul to Mexico), and Professor Jason Lee, both of whom ran the De Montfort University Enterprise Fund Project based in Oaxaca, Mexico, 2021 to 2022.

Ali Hines (Land Campaigner, Global Witness, Media Discourse Centre research associate, and author of ‘Decade of Defiance’ (2022) on the Land Defenders of the Global South)

Dr Fernanda Amaral is a founding member of the LEMRI research institute, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, a leading Media Discourse Centre research associate, and the author of ‘Voices from the favelas: media activism and counter-narratives from below’ (2021). She will describe her research project, conducted in the favelas of Rio de Janeiro.

Moderator: Professor Stuart Price, Director of the Media Discourse Centre, is the author or editor of a number books on media and political issues: the most recent are ‘Power, Media and the Covid-19 pandemic’ (with Ben Harbisher, 2022), and ‘Journalism, Power and Investigation’ (2019)

Eventbrite link to register

Identifying and analysing worthiness, unity, numbers and commitment in the UK press coverage of protests 

Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) is often criticised for not incorporating identifiable and accountable methods in its qualitative analyses (e.g. Rheindorf 2019), leading critics to comment that qualitative CDA methods lack transparency, replicability, and can lead to a high risk of researcher bias (Widdowson 2004: 109). This paper seeks to account for some of these limitations in the context of the press representation of protests. In doing so, it formulates the novel linguistic application of Tilly’s (2004) sociological ‘WUNC’ framework, which argues protests are successful when they display worthiness, unity, numbers and commitment (WUNC): 

• Worthiness: protesters are credible 

• Unity: protesters agree amongst themselves 

• Numbers: there are numerous protesters 

• Commitment: protesters will not give up 

By drawing on prominent methods and theories established in CDA, the paper formulates transparent linguistic categorisations of WUNC — realised through referential strategies (worthiness), possessive pronouns and determiners (unity), aggregation (numbers) and modality and evaluation (commitment) — that contribute to an explicit qualitative framework that can be used to analyse the press representation of protests. 

To demonstrate how this novel application of WUNC can be used in CDA, the paper uses the UK press reporting of the ‘People’s Vote’ anti-Brexit protests that took place between 2018 and 2019 as a case study. In doing so, it investigates how linguistic manifestations of WUNC can be manipulated by the press to convey support or opposition to the anti-Brexit protests, as a means to either legitimate (anti-Brexit press) or delegitimate (pro-Brexit press) the marches. 

Charlotte-Rose Kennedy is an Arts and Humanities Research Council funded doctoral student in Linguistics and lecturer in Discourse Analysis at Nottingham Trent University. Grounded in critical discourse analysis and corpus linguistics, her research combines multidisciplinary methods in the critical analysis of media representations of protest. 


MDC Research seminar by Dr Emma Graves – Thursday 26th May 2022 14:00 UK

Media Coverage of Extended Reality Technologies: The Blurred Boundary Between News and Promotional Discourse

The news media have significant power to impact public opinion of emerging technologies because they are often the general public’s first and main source of information about such innovations (Scheufele and Lewenstein, 2005; Sun et al., 2020). As the perceptions of new technologies are key to their success or failure (Buenaflor and Kim, 2013), the news media can have an impact not only on how these products are viewed but also on their adoption and diffusion (Rogers, 2003). When extended reality technologies (XR; encompassing virtual, augmented and mixed reality devices) for general consumer use were introduced in 2012-2016, anecdotal evidence suggested that the news media were strongly positive about them. Moreover, several studies uncovered a blurring of boundaries between promotional material and news discourse (e.g. Chyi and Lee, 2018; Erjavec, 2004; Harro-Loit and Saks, 2006). To examine whether this was the case in XR news coverage, my PhD study applied a multimodal, mixed methods framing analysis to the news and marketing of XR devices. This seminar discusses the study’s findings, providing insight into how XR is represented, the overlap between XR news and marketing and the power of technology companies to shape this news discourse.


Dr Emma Kaylee Gravesis a Lecturer in Media and Communications at Canterbury Christ Church University (CCCU). She completed her PhD in Media and Cultural Studies in 2021, which analysed the news and marketing of extended reality technologies. In addition, Emma has an MA by Research in Media, Art and Design and a First Class BA in Digital Media and Media and Communications. Her research interests include media representations, marketization of news media, videogames (particularly genderisation, player collaboration and the use of gaming paratexts) and online communication strategies. Emma is a former Chair of the MeCCSA Postgraduate Network and is currently involved in the Hi3 Network and the Communities and Cultures Research Hub at CCCU.

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‘At Least the Word Peace is Not Forbidden Yet’: Expanding Narratives for Equality and Justice

“At least, the word peace is not forbidden yet”, said a TV correspondent covering Ukraine on March 3, 2022, to end their coverage of the dispute about the term “war” to discuss the Russian aggression. Peace, as an ideal aim, is a concept that contains discourses that major actors in a conflict can exploit for political purposes. This MDC event examines how the media contribute to the discursive confusion about peaceful and just societies, with an emphasis on a critical analysis of saturated ideological perspectives and mainstream media.

Dr Ahmed Bahiya, who runs the MDC Research group in Babylon University, Iraq, has set up a new digital news group: was established in 2022, the Harf News Agency is an independent Iraqi media organization that promotes freedom of speech and pluralism in media coverage, in order strengthen democracy and human rights.

Centre right (above), the visitors at the University, and centre right (below), Brian Dodds showing the visitors round the journalism offices in the Clephan. The 8 visitors all received copies of the MDC edited collection Journalism, Power and Investigation.

On the 29th and 30th March, Pervez Khan organised a visit of lecturers from Tirana University, where he and Richard Danbury set up an Investigative Journalism unit.

Above (left), Pervez teaching a session in Tirana.

On the 30th March, Dr Giuliana Tiripelli gave a talk for the visitors on ‘Journalism HE: theory and practice for a better world’.