Dr Sean Holmes is Vice Dean International for the College of Business, Arts and Social Sciences and teaches in the Film and Television Studies programme. He graduated from Durham University with a degree in Modern History. He went on to complete an MA in American History at Bowling Green State University, Ohio and a PhD in American History at New York University. He has published extensively on the politics of cultural production in the United States, focusing in particular on trade unionism in the early twentieth-century American theatre and the regulation of actors’ labour in silent-era Hollywood. His monograph Weavers of Dreams, Unite!: Actors’ Unionism in Early Twentieth-Century America will be published by the University of Illinois Press in early 2013 to coincide with the centenary of the founding of the Actors’ Equity Association, the union that represents American stage actors. He co-edited (with Andrew Dawson of the University of Greenwich) Working in the Global Film and Television Industries: Creativity, Systems, Space, Patronage (London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2012), an interdisciplinary collection of essays on the experience of working in film and television production which Professor Steven J. Ross of the University of Southern California described as ‘the most wide-reaching multinational study of its kind.’
In recent years, the focus of his research has shifted from the American entertainment industry to the British film and television industries. He has collaborated with Andrew Dawson and the BECTU History Project on a number of oral history initiatives and is presently working on a project on laboratory workers, a group of technicians whose skills have been rendered largely obsolete by digital technologies.
Newest selected publications
Holmes, SP. (2013) 'Weavers of Dreams, Unite!: Actors' Unionism in Early Twentieth-Century America'. Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press.
Dawson, A. and Holmes, S. (2012) 'Working in the Global Film and Television Industries'. Bloomsbury Academic. ISSN 10: 1780930194 ISSN 13: 9781780930190
Holmes, SP. and Dawson, A. (2012) ''Help to Preserve the Real Story of Our Cinema and Television Industries': The BECTU History Project and the Construction of British Media History, 1986-2010'. Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television, 32 (3). pp. 435 - 448. ISSN: 0143-9685
Holmes, SP. (2012) 'The BECTU History Project: A Postscript'. Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television, 32 (3). pp. 449 - 451. ISSN: 0143-9685
Holmes, SP. (2012) 'New Perspectives on Working in the Global Film and Television Industries', in Holmes, SP. and Dawson, A. (eds.) Working in the Global Film and Television Industries: Systems, Space, Patronage, and Creativity. London : Bloomsbury Academic.