Dr Matt Hills - MA (London), PhD (Sussex)
Matt Hills left Cardiff Summer 2012, he can be contacted at Aberystwyth University
My research interests focus on cult media and fan cultures, situated more generally in terms of cultural studies work on audiences.
I have undertaken an AHRB 'Innovation Award' research project aimed at exploring how people can be fans of many different films, TV shows, and types of music etc at different stages of their lives. I am also interested in broadening definitions of 'cult' film and TV (something I have sought to do in published work on the 'cult blockbuster', 'mainstream cult' and 'cult canonical' film) as well as exploring a range of different fan cultures in addition to the usual cultural studies' emphasis on science fiction, horror, and telefantasy fans.
My work tends to draw on psychoanalytic and sociological theories to explore audience/consumer attachments to popular media.
- Cult Media and Fandom
- Horror, Fantasy and the Media
- Quality TV Drama
Hills M – 'Media Academics as Media Audiences', Fandom: Identities and Communities in a Mediated World, (2007)
Hills M – 'Friday the Thirteenth as Para-paracinema', Sleaze Artists, (2007)
Hills M – 'Televisuality without Television? Discourses of the 'televisual' in Doctor Who's audio adventures', Time and Relative Dissertationss in Space: Critical Approaches to Doctor Who, (2007)
Hills M – 'Fan Cultures', Blackwell Encyclopedia of Sociology, (2007)
Hills M – 'Les Diaboliques', 100 European Horror Films, (2007)
Hills M – 'Tesis', 100 European Horror Films, (2007)
Hills M – 'Is there such a thing as a "CSI Fan"? How audiences intertextually navigate the franchise', Reading CSI, (2007)
Hills M – 'Television and its Audience: Issues of Consumption and Reception', Televisions, (2006)
Hills M – 'Not just another powerless elite? When media fans become subcultural celebrities', Framing Celebrity, (2006)
Hills M – 'Realising the Cult Blockbuster', The Lord of the Rings: Popular Culture in Global Context, (2006)
[#1] Hills M – How to do Things with Cultural Theory, Hodder Education, London (2005) pp 208 ISBN 0-340-80915-9
[#1] Hills M – The Pleasures of Horror, Continuum, London (2005) pp 250 ISBN 0-8264-5888-2
[#11] Hills M – Patterns of Surprise: The ‘Aleatory Object’ in Psychoanalytic Ethnography and Cyclical Fandom, American Behavioural Scientist 48 (7) (2005) pp 801 – 821 ISSN 0002-7642
[#11] Hills M – Negative Fan Stereotypes (‘Get a Life!’) and Positive Fan Injunctions (‘Everyone’s Got to be a Fan of Something!’): Returning to Hegemony Theory in Fan Studies, Spectator: The University of Southern California Journal of Film and Television Criticism 25 (1) (2005) pp 37 – 47 ISSN 1051-0230
[#7] Hills M - Dawson’s Creek: ‘Quality Teen TV’ and ‘Mainstream Cult’?, Teen TV: Genre, Consumption and Identity, (Editors Davis G and Dickinson K), BFI, London, (2004) 54 - 67 ISBN 0-85170-999-0
[#11] Hills M - Strategies, Tactics, and the Question of Un Lieu Propre: What/Where is “Media Theory”?, Social Semiotics 14 2 (2004) 133 - 149 ISSN 1035-0330 Genre, Consumption and Identity, (Editors Davis G and Dickinson K), BFI, London, (2004) 54 - 67 ISBN 0-85170-999-0
[#7] Hills M - Defining Cult TV; Texts, Inter-texts and Fan Audiences, The Television Studies Reader, (Editors Allen R C and Hill A), Routledge, London and New York (2004) 509 - 523 ISBN 0-415-28324-8
[#7] Hills M - Doing Things with Theory: From Freud’s Worst Nightmare to (Disciplinary) Dreams of Horror’s Cultural Value, Horror Film and Psychoanalysis: Freud’s Worst Nightmare, (Editor Schneider S J) Cambridge University Press, Cambridge and New York (2004) 205 - 221 ISBN 0-521-82521-0
[#7] Hills M – Doctor Who, Fifty Key Television Programmes (Editor Creeber G) Arnold, London (2004) 75 – 79 ISBN: 0-340-80943-4
[#7] Hills M – The Prisoner, Fifty Key Television Programmes (Editor Creeber G) Arnold, London (2004) 164 - 168 ISBN 0-340-80943-4
[#7] Hills M – Star Trek, Fifty Key Television Programmes (Editor Creeber G) Arnold, London (2004) 193 – 197 ISBN 0-340-80943-4
[#7] Hills M – The Twilight Zone, Fifty Key Television Programmes (Editor Creeber G) Arnold, London (2004) 217 - 221 ISBN 0-340-80943-4
Hills M – Putting Away Childish Things: Jar Jar Binks and the 'Virtual Star' as an Object of Fan Loathing', Contemporary Hollywood Stardom, (2003)
Hills M – 'An Event-Based Definition of Art-Horror', Dark Thoughts: Philosophic Reflections on Cinematic Horror, (2003)
Hills M – 'Star Wars in Fandom, Film Theory and the Museum: the cultural status of the cult blockbuster', Movie Blockbusters, (2003)
[#7] Hills M - Fan Cultures, Sussex Studies in Culture and Communication Series, Routledge (2002)
Hills M – 'TV Guides', Predicting/Preventing the TV discourse of Tomorrow, (2002)
[#7] Hills M - Virtually out there: Strategies, tactics and affective spaces in online fandom, Technospaces: Inside the New Media (Editor: Munt, S) Continuum (2001)
[#7] Hills M - Mapping Pratchett: Hyper-diegesis and Fantasy, Terry Pratchett: Guilty of literature, Foundation Studies in Science Fiction, (Editors: James, E and Mendlesohn, F) (1999)
[#7] Hills M - The (dis)pleasures of consuming: Extrapolations of consumer society in the science fiction of Michael Marshall Smith, Consuming for Pleasure (Editor: Moody, N) Liverpool John Moores Press (1999) pp 64 - 77
Hills M - 'From the Box in the Corner to the Box Set on the Shelf: 'TVIII' and the Cultural/Textual Valorisations of DVD', New Review of Film and Television Studies, (2007)
Hills M - 'Michael Jackson Fans on Trial: Documenting Emotivism and Negative Fan Stereotypes', Social Semiotics, (2007)
Hills M - 'Essential Tensions: Winnicottian Object-Relations in the Media Sociology of Roger Silverstone', International Journal of Communication, (2007)
[#11] Hills M - Doctor Who Discovers… Cardiff: Investigating trans-generational audiences and trans-national fans of the BBC Wales Production (2006) in Wales Media Journal 2006 Issue.
[#11] Hills M and Williams R – ‘It’s All My Interpretation': Reading Spike Through the Subcultural Celebrity of James Marsters, European Journal of Cultural Studies Vol. 8, No. 3 (2005).
Hills M – 'Angel's Monstrous Mothers and Vampires with Souls: Investigating the Abject in 'Television Horror', Reading Angel: The TV Spin-Off With A Soul, (2005)
[#11] Hills M - Patterns of Surprise: The “Aleatory Object” in Psychoanalytic Ethnography and Cyclical Fandom, American Behavioral Scientist Vol. 48, No. 7, special issue on fan studies (2005)
[#11] Hills M - From “Get a Life” to “Everyone Has To Be a Fan of Something”: Returning to Hegemony Theory in Fan Studies, Spectator: The University of South California Journal of Film and TV, special issue on media fandom (2005)
[#11] Hills M - Strategies, Tactics and the Question of Un Lieu Propre: What/Where is “Media Theory”?, Social Semiotics Volume 14, Number 2 (2004).
[#11] Hills M - Counterfictions in the Work of Kim Newman: Rewriting Gothic SF as “Alternate Story Stories”, Science Fiction Studies Volume 30, Part 3 (2003).
[#11] Hills M - Subcultural celebrity' and cult TV fan cultures, Mediactive Issue 2 (2003)
[#11] Hills M - Media fandom, neoreligiosity, and cult(ural) studies, The Velvet Light Trap: A Critical Journal of Film and Television No. 46 (2000)
[#11] Hills M - The common sense of Cultural Studies: Qualitative Audience Research and the role of theory in(-)determining method, Diegesis: The Journal of the Association for Research into Popular Fictions No. 5 (1999).
I am currently undertaking PhD supervisions in the following areas:
King Arthur as a popular cultural icon and theories of cultural value;
Men reading for pleasure: media consumption and gender identity;
Online fan communities and cultural identity; Comedy and transnational/fan audiences;
Television drama, quality and cultural distinction: A comparative study of TV fandoms.
Fans of fans: Exploring fan fiction fandom;
Discourses of design and cultural consumption;
Genre, popular memory, and representations of the apocalypse.
Matt Hills completed his PhD at the University of Sussex in 1999. This was entitled 'Dialectic of Value: The Sociology and Psychoanalysis of Cult Media'. Matt lectured at the University of Central England in Birmingham before joining JOMEC in March 2000. He is the author of Fan Cultures (Routledge, 2002), The Pleasures of Horror (Continuum, 2005), and How to do things with Cultural Theory (Hodder-Arnold, 2005).