Impact on HEIs beyond the submitting HEI and in non-academic literature, media and institutions

Submitting Institution

University of West London

Unit of Assessment

Communication, Cultural and Media Studies, Library and Information Management 

Summary Impact Type


Research Subject Area(s)

Studies In Creative Arts and Writing: Film, Television and Digital Media
Language, Communication and Culture: Cultural Studies, Literary Studies

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Summary of the impact

The nature of the impact described in this case study is twofold. First the case study evidences the impact Dowd's research has had on learning and teaching in other Higher Education Institutions. The evidence for this lies in the use of Dowd's publications by educators on University courses in the UK, the US, Australia and elsewhere. Impact of books and articles published in the period 1998-2013 which are used in syllabi at other HEIs is evidenced by their inclusion in course documents published by those institutions during the census period for REF2014. The second, related, strand of impact may be ascertained by the extent to which the same body of research has been responded to and engaged with outside the domain of academic literature.

Underpinning research

The type of research conducted by Dowd relies on the mechanisms of dissemination afforded by academia, in order to find its pathway to impact through the influence it exerts on academics beyond his own institution, to include his work in their course reading lists. His adventurous and imaginative approach, combined with his flexibility in terms of disciplinary boundaries has resulted in a reputation that, over time, has led also to invitations and opportunities to disseminate his research in non-academic forums (listed below in section 4).

Dowd's 2003 book, Leos Carax, co-authored with Daly and published in the French Film Directors series by Manchester University Press, analysed the career to date of the titular French film director. The book's methodological framework was derived from immersion in film criticism of the 1980s as this was carried out in the influential film journal Cahiers du cinéma, combined with an experiment in the application of theories developed in the French philosopher Gilles Deleuze's two- volume work on cinema. The book expanded the range of Deleuze's concepts and brought them into explicit contact with the little-studied intellectual and cultural background to Deleuze's cinephilia.

Dowd later returned to excavate aspects of the legacy of Cahiers, and in particular its chief ideologue and editor (in the 1970s), Serge Daney. Following a paper at the annual Film-Philosophy conference in 2009, he was invited to contribute (on the basis of the underpinning research) to what was to become a popular and high-selling volume widely used in undergraduate curricula.1 In three subsequent articles included in REF Section 2, Dowd explores the intertwining legacies of film practice (Rivette in Dowd 2010, and another article not cited in the underpinning research due to restrictions of space2), film criticism (Daney, in Dowd 2010) and film-philosophy (Deleuze in both Dowd 2009 and 2010).

The research which culminated in the publication of his book Abstract Machines: Samuel Beckett and Philosophy after Deleuze and Guattari (Dowd 2007) began with the publication of essays in The Journal of Beckett Studies in 1998 and continued over the following 5 years. From 1998 to 2001 Dowd was a lecturer in English Literature but also taught in the field of Film Studies. Dowd's interdisciplinary approach to his fields of study was further evidenced in the 2006 volume Genre Matters: Essays in Theory and Criticism (co-edited with Stevenson and Strong, the latter also submitting in this UOA).3

During the period 1995-present Dowd has published book reviews in a range of significant peer- reviewed journals, but also in the periodical Radical Philosophy (which has a substantial non- academic readership). He has delivered over 45 conference papers since 1998, published 25 peer- reviewed articles, and 15 chapters in edited volumes.

References to the research

1. Dowd, Garin (2003) Leos Carax, Manchester University Press, French Film Directors Series. Co-author: Fergus Daly.

2. Dowd, Garin, Lesley Stevenson and Jeremy Strong eds (2006) Genre Matters: Essays in Theory and Criticism, Introduction by Garin Dowd, Intellect Books, 2006).


3. Dowd, Garin (2007) Abstract Machines: Samuel Beckett and Philosophy after Deleuze and Guattari, Editions Rodopi 2007.


4. Dowd, Garin (2008) `Prolegomena to a Critique of Excavatory Reason: Reply to Matthew Feldman', Samuel Beckett Today/Aujourd'hui 20, pp. 375-388.

5. Dowd, Garin (2010) `Pedagogies of the Image Between Daney and Deleuze', New Review of Film and Television Studies 8.1, pp. 41-56.


6. Dowd, Garin (2010a), `"Our day will come": Histoire de Marie et Julien in the light of Les filles du feu', Australian Journal of French Studies XLVII. 2, pp. 171-183.


Evidence of quality

The evidence base for the claim to the quality of the underpinning research is twofold. First, Dowd's work has been included in an array of high quality peer-reviewed journals and other publications by university presses. Second, the critical reception of Dowd's research by (other) principal scholars in his field(s). The links below to reviews or citations of Dowd's research offer evidence that his work is regarded by established peers in the field(s) as being highly reputable.

Reviews and critical reception of research cited above

Dowd (2007) is cited in favourable terms several times in the eminent work of Jean-Jacques Lecercle, Badiou and Deleuze Read Literature, Edinburgh University Press, 2010.

• The book is positively reviewed by Anthony Uhlmann in The Beckett Circle, Fall 2009: 32.2, pp. 20-22: "[Dowd] offers perhaps the most in depth analysis to date of the ways in which Beckett studies have attempted to come to terms with Beckett's relationship with philosophy":*SBECKETT&n=60655&ct=59097&e =255392

• It is also favourably received in a review article entitled `Une machine abstraite nommée Beckett' by Katerina Kanelli, published in the online journal Acta fabula where the book is said to offer « une lecture fine et sérieuse, largement argumentée, ayant le goût ludique de la formule »:

• Positive reviews also appear in: the journal French Studies: A Quarterly Review 62.4, October 2008, pp. 500-501, where David Addyman concludes that "all Dowd's readings of the philosophical heritage against Beckett are superb": _review/v062/62.4.addyman.html and

• and in the journal The French Review 83.4 (Charles Stivale): nts.pdf

• His book Leos Carax (Dowd 2003) has been cited with approval by authors such as Alban Pichon in Leos Carax: L'expérience du déjà-vu (Editions le bord de l'eau, 2009), Martine Beugnet in The Cinema of Sensation (Edinburgh UP, 2007) and Angelo Restivo in a chapter in Galt and Shoonover (eds) Global Art Cinema (Oxford UP, 2010).

• A review by Vanderschelden in the online peer-reviewed journal film-philosophy concludes that: "The book is accessible, and contains material which can be used both in Critical Theory courses in which film is increasingly used as text":

The edited volume Genre Matters (Dowd 2006) is favourably reviewed by Margaret A. Rose in Modern Philology 107 (2010): "[T]he collection...deserves to be recommended for providing some new and generally well-thought-out ideas on the subject and theory of genre as well as on the relevance of the concept to contemporary media analysis, and an interesting...variety of examples of literature, television, and film not always brought together in such discussions":

Dowd's work is named as being at the forefront of considerations of the work of Beckett in the light of poststructuralist philosophy in this recent call for papers, where it is stated that "Eminent Beckett Scholars like Ruby Cohn, Stanley Gontarski, Anthony Uhlmann, Garin Dowd and others have been sensitive to what we can call a `philosophical turn' in the field known as Beckett Studies":

Details of the impact

Since 1998 Dowd has developed a distinctive body of research notable for its ability to reach beyond traditional disciplinary boundaries. The variety embodied in Dowd's scholarly interventions has been mirrored in the breadth of settings and institutions (outside academia) where those works have been re-voiced, adopted and adapted. The evidence base for this claim derives from the number of responses to the research in popular publications such as magazines; in newspapers and invitations to contribute to public presentations and publications outside academia; in online media such as blogs and in programming notes for film screenings.

Considering the strand of his research that overlaps with visual cultures, Dowd's research has had impact in the area of the visual arts (broadly understood) beyond HEIs. The path to this impact derives from the basis of his reputation for innovation and research not confined to a strictly demarcated discipline (Dowd 2003, 2006, and 2007). He has been invited to speak at events co- hosted by Tate Modern (150 delegates), at The David Roberts Art Foundation, and to introduce film screenings at the Different Directions Film Festival in Galway, Ireland. He was invited to write a catalogue essay (published in English, Italian and Hungarian) for the artist selected to represent Hungary at the 2005 Venice Biennale — Bálázs Kisciny — and has written a short text published in Spanish on the work of his colleague Luciano Zubillaga (also submitting in this UOA).4 He has contributed to the reception of the work of these artists and through his engagement with cultural institutions and discourses concerning the visual and audio-visual arts beyond academia his work has contributed to cultural enrichment.

The influence of his 2006 edited collection Genre Matters (Dowd 2006) is registered in curricula in the census period and led to Dowd being invited to act in a consultancy capacity and subsequently to perform the role of project partner on the successful AHRC-funded Genre Studies Network led by the University of Birmingham (2012-13). The pathway to impact claimed here is that through the underpinning research an impact was ultimately achieved in the shape of engagement with individuals located outside academia. The audience for the sessions reached significantly beyond the academic community to include delegates and participants for a variety of professional fields including art, journalism, librarianship, film archiving and professional translation.

Dowd's research in the field of literary studies has achieved impact in similar ways to his work in film and visual culture. The pathway to impact claimed in respect of his research in the field of literature is that on the basis of the underpinning research conducted by Dowd on the work of Beckett his work is now widely cited in undergraduate and postgraduate curricula. Thus his work has led to the shaping and framing of debate within the field .as it is manifest in curricula. The same underpinning research has led to a direct impact on a significant constituency outside academia.

Dowd's research into the work of the renowned literary author Samuel Beckett (1906-1989) is appreciated as having been of significant influence in establishing new links between the philosophy of Gilles Deleuze and Beckett (Dowd 2007) and for consolidating the perception of the viability of applications of so-called Theory (deriving from post-war European philosophy) to literature in the wake of the so-called `empirical turn' which has been felt in general in the area of Modernism Studies with which the work of Beckett now tends to be grouped (following distinct models of classification in preceding decades). This influential work has translated into discernible impacts. His work is frequently a primary resource in undergraduate and postgraduate (MA) reading lists. His published methodological debate with Matthew Feldman (Dowd 2008) — widely regarded as one of the most significant empirical scholars of Beckett — for example has been extensively used in undergraduate and postgraduate courses exploring contending methodological perspectives in the field. Dowd's standing in the sub-field of Deleuzian Beckett Studies was acknowledged when he was invited to participate in the Inaugural Samuel Beckett Summer School at Trinity College Dublin in July 2011. The first summer school was themed `Beckett and Deleuze'. Dowd was responsible both for the week-long seminar core series on Beckett and Deleuze and for a keynote lecture. Notably, there were 80 delegates with more than half of the participants coming from outside the University sector.

During this period Dowd has published book reviews in the independent, collectively run journal Radical Philosophy and film that has a significant number of non-academic subscribers and in the trade magazines Film West (prior to the census period5) and Film Ireland.

Sources to corroborate the impact

Sample evidence of the inclusion of Dowd's work on syllabi and citations in undergraduate and postgraduate writing:

  1. a.pdf
  2. Landscape

Individuals who may be contacted to corroborate claims

  • Professor at the University of Western Sydney;
  • Senior Lecturer in English Literature and Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths College, University of London;
  • Professor of Modern English, University of Sussex;
  • Professor of Drama and Film at Trinity College Dublin;
  • Lecturer in Film Studies, Monash University, Australia;
  • Reader in Screen Media, Manchester Metropolitan University.

1 Dowd, Garin (2009) `Serge Daney'. In Film, Theory and Philosophy: Key Thinkers, edited by Felicity Colman, London: Acumen Press, pp. 122-133.
2 Dowd (2009) `Paris and its Doubles: Deleuze and Rivette', Deleuze Studies 3.2, pp. 185-206.
3 Dowd also contributed the Introduction and a chapter on Samuel Beckett on film to this collection.