Working with and Interviewing Writers, Artists and Filmmakers (session details and recordings)

Session leaders: Joe Ford (IMLR), with Kasia Mika (QMUL) and Claire Griffiths (Chester)

Wednesday 2 November 2021, 2pm - 3.30pm (GMT)

Summary: Increasingly, those researching living writers, artists and filmmakers will want to work with and interview them as part of their research. This can be fruitful for research outputs, running public engagement events, and developing longer term collaborations with writers, artists and filmmakers. There are, however, several factors to consider when using interviews as part of the research process: How do writers, artists and filmmakers position themselves when giving interviews? Is the researcher’s critical capacity compromised by working with the subjects of their research? What are the practical and ethical considerations when approaching participants and what different types of interviews are there to choose from? Facilitated by researchers with experience working with and interviewing international writers, artists and filmmakers, this session will introduce you to the theory and practice of making contact, building relationships and conducting ‘elite’ semi-structured interviews with research participants who are writers, artists and/or filmmakers.

Recommended reading:

Anneleen Masschelein et al., ‘The Literary Interview: Toward a Poetics of a Hybrid Genre’Poetics Today 35.1-2 (2014): 1–49.

Jerome Boyd Maunsell, The literary interview as autobiography’European Journal of Life Writing 5 (2016): 23–42.

John Rodden, ‘The Literary Interview as Public Performance’, Culture and Society 50 (2013): 403–406.

Kasia Mika & Edward Owles, ‘Intranquilities – A portrait of how contemporary Haitian artists’ (2019), https://www.blackhistorymonth.org.uk/article/section/interviews/intranquilities-a-portrait-of-how-contemporary-haitian-artists/.

Session recordings (see below):

1.     Introduction to Interviews as a Research Method - Dr Naomi Wells

2.     Carrying Out and Incorporating the Interview into Research - Dr Joe Ford

3.     Looking Back on Two Decades of Fieldwork - Prof. Claire Griffiths

4.     Negotiating Filming and Collaboration in Haiti - Dr Kasia Mika


Video 1: Introduction to Interviews as a Research Method - Dr Naomi Wells

Video 2: Carrying Out and Incorporating the Interview into Research - Dr Joe Ford

Video 3: Looking Back on Two Decades of Fieldwork - Prof. Claire Griffiths

Video 4: Negotiating Filming and Collaboration in Haiti - Dr Kasia Mika


IntranQu’îllités - trailer from the documentary produced by Kasia Mika