Fear 2000: Horror Uncaged – July 2023

Fear 2000

Fear 2000 is a conference series dedicated to twenty-first century horror media convened by Craig Ian Mann, Oli Hicks, Mars Nicoli and Kirstie Rutter at Sheffield Hallam University, hosted by the Centre for Culture, Media and Society and the Department of Media Arts and Communication at Sheffield Hallam University.

The 2023 edition of Fear 2000, Horror Uncaged will be hosted both online and in-person at Sheffield Hallam University on 21-22 July and 27-29 July 2023.

Hosted by staff and postgraduate students aligned to the Centre for Culture, Media and Society and the Department of Media Arts and Communication at Sheffield Hallam University, this event will take place online via Zoom from 21-22 July 2023 and in person in Sheffield, UK from 28-29 July 2023. The conference will explore contemporary horror beyond the mainstream, with a particular emphasis on papers that broadly align to three key strands:

  • Independent: papers that focus on genre media produced outside of the mainstream
  • Inclusive: papers that consider how horror speaks to and for marginalised communities
  • International: papers that aim to study global and non-anglophone horror

Moving away from the theme of last year’s event, which largely turned its attention to the significance of popular franchises, remakes and sequels, Fear 2000: Horror Uncaged will shed light on the understudied and under-appreciated in contemporary horror. Inspired by the recent success of such horror films as Deadstream (2022), Hatching (2022), Huesera (2022), Incantation (2022), Piggy (2022), Skinamarink (2022), Titane (2021) and We’re All Going to the World’s Fair (2021), the conference will aim to deepen our understanding of the social, cultural, political, industrial and aesthetic significance of contemporary horror that is: produced, distributed or exhibited independently; is inclusive in its authorship and/or representation; or is produced by understudied national cinemas and particularly in non-anglophone nations.

Our first keynote speaker for this event will be Shellie McMurdo (University of Hertfordshire), author of Blood on the Lens: Trauma and Anxiety in American Found Footage Horror Cinema (2022), who will discuss the links between the found footage format and the conference themes. Further keynote lectures, special events and guests will be announced via our website and social media channels in the coming months.

To ensure a full and dedicated experience for those unable to attend in person, this four-day conference will take place online from 21-22 July and in person from 28-29 July. The theme and format will remain the same across the four days and, where possible, the in-person half of the event will be streamed online for accessibility.

Fear 2000: Horror Uncaged is supported by the Centre of Culture, Media and Society and the Department of Media Arts and Communication at Sheffield Hallam University, Edinburgh University Press, BAFTSS and Celluloid Screams Sheffield Horror Film Festival.

Principal organiser Craig Ian Mann (he/him) is lecturer in film and media studies at Sheffield Hallam University with a research interest in popular genres. He is the author of Phases of the Moon: A Cultural History of the Werewolf Film (2020) and Bleeding Us Dry: Independent American Horror and Anti-capitalism (forthcoming). Additionally, he has contributed to the Journal of Popular Film and TelevisionHorror Studies and Science Fiction Film and Television as well as a number of edited collections.