Dr James Aston

“These movies have brought me many problems”: Performance and the Traumatised Self within Hardcore Horror

Dr James Aston is currently subject leader for Screen at the University of Hull. He teaches extensively on the undergraduate film programme including American Alternative Cinema, East Asian Cinema, and Global Nightmares: Contemporary Horror Cinema from Around the World. He has published numerous articles on the horror film and is co-editor of To See the Saw Movies: Essays on Torture Porn and Post-9/11 Horror. He is currently working on a monograph entitled Beyond Videodrome: An Archaeology of Hardcore Horror.

Dr Catherine Spooner

Asylum Chic, or, What to Wear to the Lunatics’ Ball

Dr Catherine Spooner is Reader in Literature and Culture at Lancaster University, and co-president of the International Gothic Association. She has published widely on Gothic in literature, film and popular culture, with a particular emphasis on fashion. Her publications include the monographs Fashioning Gothic Bodies and Contemporary Gothic and the co-edited collections The Routledge Companion to Gothic, Monstrous Media/Spectral Subjects: Imaging Gothic from the Nineteenth Century to the Present and Return to Twin Peaks: New Approaches to Materiality, Theory and Genre on Television. She is currently completing a new monograph entitled Post-Millennial Gothic: Comedy, Romance and the Rise of Happy Gothic, to be published in 2017.

Dawn Woolley

The Selfie: Still Life or Nature Morte?

Dawn Woolley trained as a fine art printmaker. She completed her undergraduate degree in 2001 and has since developed a visual art practice that encompasses digital video, installation and performance and photography. In 2008 she completed an MA in Photography at the Royal College of Art. Recent exhibitions have included; “”Basically. Forever” Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Photography and “Recollection” Ruimte Morguen Gallery, Antwerp (2014). Solo exhibitions include; “Visual Pleasure”, Hippolyte Photography Gallery, Helsinki, Finland (2013); “Visual Pleasure”, Vilniaus Fotografijos Galerija, Lithuania (2012); “Visual Pleasure” at Ffotogallery in Cardiff (2011) and “The Substitute”, Murray Edwards College, Cambridge University (2010). She is currently undertaking PhD research in photography at the Royal College of Art. The broad aim of the research is to articulate a form of fetishism, which is not based on sexual difference but historicised as a capitalist pathology. The practical aspect of the research project centres on the still life as a type of portrait suggestive of different consumers. She explores the relationship between people and objects, and the impact of images as disseminators of sign value.  For more information see: