Dr Anna Viola Sborgi
School of Film, Music & Theatre
Dr Anna Viola Sborgi is a Marie Skłodowska Curie Research Fellow at the Department of Film and Screen Media. Her interests are in film, media and urban studies, with a focus on housing precarity and the aesthetics and politics of gentrification. She holds a PhD in Film Studies from King’s College London, where she also taught, and a PhD in Comparative Literature from the University of Genoa, where she was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow (2019-21), working on post-2000 representations of high-rise and tower-block living in London.
“Housing Problems: Britain’s Housing Crisis and Documentary.” In Cinema of Crisis: Film and Contemporary Europe, edited by Thomas Austin and Angelos Koutsourakis, 180-197. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2020.
“Grenfell on Screen.” In After Grenfell: Violence, Resistance and Response, edited by Daniel Bulley, Jenny Edkins, Nadine El-Enany, 97-118. London: Pluto Press, 2019.
Her current project at UCC, MEDIAHOMES: Housing Precarity on Screen in Ireland, Portugal and the UK from the 2008 crisis to COVID-19, is funded by a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship within the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme and runs from December 2021 to November 2023.
It investigates representations of the home, housing precarity and homelessness, focusing on the aspect of socioeconomic inequality across gender, race and class. Its overall objective is to devise, through a strongly interdisciplinary methodology combining methods in the humanities with studies in the social sciences, a new, transnational model to analyse screen narratives of housing precarity, their production and circulation. Across a range of documentaries, essay films, realist features and short non-fiction films the project will investigate the representation of an ongoing housing crisis and trace their intersections with the developing corpus of housing precarity in the lockdown and the pandemic.
Within this corpus, the project considers three modes of media activity: 1) representation 2) production and 3) circulation (distribution and screening). The main research objectives of the action are: 1) to build a transnational corpus of media representations of the urgent challenge of housing precarity and inequality within European cinema and to provide an innovative model for its analysis across media genres, 2) to understand who the subjects producing this corpus are and whether filmmakers from a variety of gender, race and class backgrounds have equal access to representation or not 3) to understand how films about housing circulate across different platforms online and offline and in society at large 4) to investigate how these productions have been affected by the transformation of the home into a site of creative labour during the pandemic and how this intersects with socioeconomic inequality.