Call for Papers: Video Journal of Education and Pedagogy

Urban Film-making and Pedagogies of Noncompliance: Posthuman ecologies and the re-imagining of urban life

Guest Editors: David Rousell (RMIT University) and Laura Trafi-Prats (Manchester Metropolitan University)

“When learning is noncompliant it opens the future to difference”.

Ellsworth, 2011, p. 308

With an international scope, this special issue invites submissions from film-based art and research projects that mobilize noncompliant pedagogies of sense and sensation in studying and reshaping life in the city. Following Braidotti and Bignall’s (2019) proposal for a “posthuman ecology” capable of rethinking urban life beyond anthropocentric frames, this special issue will feature projects that activate the relational capacities for film-making to enliven and intensify complex ensembles of human and more-than-human life in the city. We are interested in pedagogic encounters with film that do not teach in a didactic way, but seek to learn from the relational texture of posthuman ecologies where new forms of urban life are always in germ (Goodman, 2018; Manning, 2012).

A significant aspect of such pedagogical encounters is their noncompliance with normative classifications of experience according to the reductive logic of the Western liberal subject (Ellsworth, 2005). Allied with decolonial movements in international scholarship, art, media, and activism (Chen; 2012; Moten, 2018; Saldanha, 2019; Singh, 2018; Todd, 2015; Yusoff, 2019), we are interested in how the affirmative insurgency of film-making can potentialise the micropolitical desire for alternative forms of collective life in the city (Rolnik, 2017). Pedagogies of noncompliance are increasingly urgent as we discuss post-pandemic conditions amidst a climate emergency and the widespread erosion of liberal democratic values (Gilbert, 2014), where what constitutes urban life and relationality is undergoing radical transformation. Under these conditions, the power of film bears a potential to envision and enact affective engagements that break the habits of sensory-motor mechanisms (Colebrook, 2019; Munster 2019), allowing temporal flights of creativity and re-compositions of urban life through the “occurrent arts” of event-based media (Massumi, 2011; 2019).

The Video Journal of Education and Pedagogy is fully Open Access. It offers a unique platform that supports the publication of high-quality video files alongside typeset articles. The APC cost of $700 US is heavily subsidised by Brill Publishers for all authors whose work is accepted for publication following double blind-review processes. The Association for Visual Pedagogies, a scholarly society who owns the journal, will pay the full APC charge for one 'Editors Choice' contribution selected by the Editor-in-chief in consultation with the Editors of the Special Topic.
VJEP offers a unique platform that supports the publication of high quality video files alongside typeset articles. We invite proposals for research articles of 4000-7000 words to be published in tandem with a work of film-based art or media of up to 20 minutes in duration. We are particularly interested in submissions that address the following propositional aims of the special issue:

  • To explore the role of urban film-making as a medium for public pedagogy that is ecological, atmospheric, and noncompliant, exemplifying how the life of the city can be remade through film, projection, AV installation, performance, and related evental, occurrent, and spatio-temporal practices (Brunner & Fritsch, 2011; Brunner, 2020; Massumi, 2019; Pappacharissi, 2015)
  • To discuss international participative film-based research projects that share a posthumanist/new materialist orientation, and that foreground pedagogy as a continuously created and recreated process that tunes into the world’s differential affects and becomings (Ellsworth 2005; Hickey-Moody, 2013).
  • To analyze affective and somatic modes of participatory film-making and their potential to create virtual openings in the ubiquitous quality of sensation in the city (Thain, 2019), where sensory capacity is spread beyond the limited ‘bandwidth’ of human sensation, and complex technological ecosystems continually sense, modulate, and control places of learning (de Freitas, Rousell & Jäger, 2019; Munster, 2019).
  • To establish a set of conceptual and pragmatic tools for opening alternative paths in education and civic life beyond liberal subjectivism (Gilbert, 2014) and white Western perspectivist knowledge (Harney & Moten, 2013; Keeling, 2019), using the medium of film to experiment alternative ethical and political values for the posthuman turn (Braidotti & Bignall, 2019).
  • To carefully analyze the potentials for bodies, technologies, materials and urban infrastructures to converge and relate in response-able ways through practices of urban film-making, taking into account both the capacities and vulnerabilities of the many actors, kinships, and ecological dependencies involved (Haraway, 2016).


April 1st, 2021: Abstracts/proposals of 500 words due to guest editors.
July 1st, 2021: Full draft papers and film submissions due to guest editors.
November 1st, 2021: Revised manuscripts and film submissions returned to guest editors.
December 15th, 2021: Estimated publication date for special topic.

Authors will also be invited to present work in progress at the Association of Visual Pedagogies conference in mid-2021.


  • Braidotti, R. & Bignall, S. (2018). Introduction in R. Braidotti & S. Bignall, Posthuman ecologies: Complexity and process after Deleuze. London, UK: Rowman and Littlefield.
  • Braidotti, R. & Bignall, S. (2018). Introduction in R. Braidotti & S. Bignall, Posthuman ecologies: Complexity and process after Deleuze. London, UK: Rowman and Littlefield.
  • Brunner, C. (2020). "Making sense" of aesthetic counterpowers in activist media practices. Conjunctions: Transdisciplinary Journal of Cultural Participation, 7(1), 1-16.
  • Brunner, C., & Fritsch, J. (2011). Interactive environments as fields of transduction. The Fibreculture Journal, 18, 118–145.
  • Chen, M. Y. (2012). Animacies: Biopolitics, Racial Mattering, and Queer Affect. Durham: Duke University Press.
  • Colebrook, C. (2019). Unthinkable extinction: Cinematic time and the panorama of history. Alienocene- Journal of the First Outernational. 
  • de Freitas, E., Rousell, D., & Jager, N. (2019). Relational architectures and wearable space: Smart schools and the politics of ubiquitous sensation. Research in Education [special issue on “biosocial imaginaries in education”], 107(1), 10-32.
  • Ellsworth, E. (2005). Places of learning: Media, architecture, pedagogy. Abingdon, UK: Routledge.
  • Ellsworth, E. (2011). The wicked problem of pedagogy, an afterword. In R. T. Scholz (Ed.), Learning through digital media: Experiments in technology and pedagogy (pp. 305-311). New York, NY: The Institute for Distributed Creativity.
  • Gilbert, J. (2014). Common ground: Democracy and collectivity in an age of individualism. London, UK: Pluto Press.
  • Goodman, A. (2018). Gathering ecologies: Thinking beyond interactivity. Open Humanities Press.
  • Haraway, D. J. (2016). Staying with the trouble: Making kin in the Cthulucene. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
  • Harney, S. & Moten, F. (2013). The Undercommons: Fugitive planning and Black study. New York: Minor Compositions.
  • Hickey-Moody, A. (2013). Youth, arts, and education: Reassembling subjectivity through affect. London: Routledge.
  • Keeling, K. (2019). Queer times, black futures. New York: New York University Press.
  • Manning, E. (2012). Relationscapes: Movement, art, philosophy. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
  • Massumi, B. (2011). Semblance and event: Activist philosophy and the occurrent arts. Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press. 
  • Massumi, B. (2019). Architecture of the unforeseen: Essays in the occurrent arts. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press.
  • Moten, F. (2019). The Universal Machine. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
  • Munster, A. (2019). Signaletic immediations: Sensing new media as relational events and ecologies. Manning, A. Munster & B.M. Stavning Thomsen (Eds.) Immediation I (pp. 228-239). London: Open Humanities Press.
  • Papacharissi, Z. (2015). Affective publics and structures of storytelling: Sentiment, events and mediality. Information, Communication & Society, 19(3), 307–24.
  • Rolnik, S. (2017). The spheres of insurrection: Suggestions for combatting the pimping of life. E-Flux, 86, 1-11.
  • Rousell, D. (2020). A map you can walk into: Immersive cartography and the speculative potentials of data. Qualitative Inquiry [special issue on “new directions in inquiry”].
  • Rousell, D., Hohti, R., MacLure, M., & Chalk, H. (2020). Blots on the Anthropocene: Micropolitical interventions with young people in a university museum. Cultural Studies <-> Critical Methodologies.
  • Saldanha, A. (2019). A date with destiny: Racial capitalism and the beginnings of the Anthropocene. Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 0263775819871964
  • Singh, J. (2018). Unthinking mastery: Dehumanism and decolonial entanglements. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
  • Thain, A. (2019). Mobile media's new multiplexes: Cinema out of the box. In E. Manning, A. Munster & B.M. Stavning Thomsen (Eds.) Immediation I (pp. 240-255). London: Open Humanities Press.
  • Todd, Z. (2015). Indigenizing the Anthropocene. In H. Davis and E. Turpin (eds). Art in the Anthropocene: encounters among aesthetics, politics, environments and epistemologies (pp. 241-254). London: Open Humanities Press. 
  • Yusoff, K. (2019). A billion Black Anthropocenes or none. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.