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Faculty details inclusive screenwriting for film, television


Inclusive Screenwriting for Film and Television
(DePaul University/Jeff Carrion)

Inclusive Screenwriting for Film and Television​

By: ​​Jess King, School of Cinematic Arts 

Inclusive Screenwriting for Film and Television​
(Image courtesy of Routledge)

​​​"Inclusive Screenwriting for Film and Television" addresses the current demand for more inclusive representation in film and TV and equips screenwriters with the tools to ensure their screenplays tell authentic stories, offering innovative ways to reimagine current screenwriting practice towards radical equity and inclusion. In examining the history and codification of character design, conflict, narrative structure and world-building, the book exposes the inherent violence of a storytelling regime that celebrates the 'universal human'​​​​​ while erasing the uniqueness of lived experience for people with marginalized and intersectional identities. 

What inspired you to write this book?

While critiques of media representation in terms of diverse casting and hiring are common within media studies and mainstream culture, such critiques rarely inform the study or teaching of screenwriting norms. It was important to me to offer a way out of that current conundrum. So much media criticism is just that: criticism. Just as Hollywood endlessly repeats the same tired tropes and narrative arcs, media criticism endlessly articulates its dissatisfaction with those same tropes and arcs. We know what’s wrong, at least superficially. I wanted to get under the hood and diagnose the conceptual roots of the problem and then provide real, existing examples of possible ways out of the fray. 

Persuade someone to read your book in less than 50 words​:

This book offers media practitioners, scholars and fans a guide to an ethical screenwriting practice that centers cultural specificity and lived experience over paradigmatic expectations. It serves as a way to enrich the cultural imaginary from which we all derive meaning, a sense of self and a sense of belonging in the world.

About the author:

Jess King is an educator, scholar, and interdisciplinary filmmaker. As an instructor at DePaul's School of Cinematic Arts, King teaches courses in screenwriting, independent television and film analysis. Their current creative scholarship revolves around frameworks for reimagining screenwriting for radical equality and social justice.

​​Publisher and publication date:

Routledge (Focal Press), ​May 2022

Signed by the Author allows DePaul faculty and staff to introduce their recently published or upcoming book or chapter to the university community. To submit your book or chapter for consideration, contact Newsline. See more books published by faculty and staff in the Signed by the Author column.