Prof Martin Barker BA Athroniaeth (Liverpool) 1967, DPhil Astudiaethau Diwylliannol (Prifysgol Orllewin Lloegr) 1993

Prof Martin Barker

Emeritus Professor

Contact Details


Martin Barker took up his post as Professor of Film and Television Studies in January 2001. He has previously worked for 29 years at the University of the West of England, where he became Head of School of Cultural Studies, and then for two years as Reader in Media Studies at the University of Sussex.


PhD Supervision


In the last two decades the primary focus of my research has been on film audiences. My research has covered audience responses to, and understandings of, films as diverse as Judge Dredd, Crash, Straw Dogs, and Being John Malkovich. I directed the international project on the reception of the film of The Lord of the Rings, and most recently directed a project funded by the British Board of Film Classification into audience responses to screened sexual violence. I have side-line interests in a range of topics, including such topics as the history of the Iwo Jima image, and film failures. I also retain an active interest in various aspects of film history and textual form, and continue to collaborate with Roger Sabin (University of the Arts, London) into the continuing history of Fenimore Cooper's Last of the Mohicans. I was founder, and am co-editor (with Sue Turnbull, LaTrobe University, Melbourne, Australia) of the online audience studies journal Participations.

I have been engaged in work within the broad cultural studies sphere since 1969, at various times exploring the cultural and ideological aspects of racism, and children's comics, addressing curricular issues in the field, and engaging in debates on topics around censorship, the control of culture, and the operation of 'figures of the audience' within public and policy debates.



Barker, M., Egan, K., Philips, T., Ralph, S. 2015. Alien Audiences: Remembering and Evaluating a Classic Movie. 1st edn, Springer Nature, Basingstoke


Barker, M. 2009. Changing lives, challenging concepts: Some findings and lessons from the Lord of the Rings project. International Journal of Cultural Studies 12 (4) pp. 375. Cadair


Barker, M. 2008. Analysing Discourse. Research Methods for Cultural Studies. Edinburgh University Press pp. 150-172. Cadair Other

Barker, M. 2008. Lord of The Rings database user guide. Prifysgol Aberystwyth | Aberystwyth University Cadair

Barker, M. 2008. Report for the British Board of Film Classification on viewers of the Lord of the Rings, aged under 16. British Board of Film Classification Cadair

Barker, M. 2008. The Pleasures of Watching an 'Off-beat' Film: the Case of Being John Malkovich. Scope : an Online Journal of Film Studies 11 Cadair Other

Barker, M.J. 2008. The Pleasures of Watching an “Off-beat” Film: The Case of Being John Malkovich. Scope : an Online Journal of Film Studies

Mathijs, E., Barker, M. 2008. Watching the Lord of the Rings. Peter Lang Cadair Other


Mathijs, E., Barker, M. 2007. 'Seeing The Promised Land From Afar: The Perception of New Zealand by Overseas The Lord of the Rings Audiences. How We Became Middle-earth: A Collection of Essays on The Lord of the Rings. Walking Tree Publishers pp. 10-28. Cadair Other

Sexton, J., Mathijs, E., Egan, K., Hunter, R., Selfe, M., Barker, M. 2007. Audiences and Receptions of Sexual Violence in Contemporary Cinema. British Board of Film Classification Cadair Other

Egan, K., Barker, M.J. 2007. The Books, the DVDs, the Extras and Their Lovers. In M. Barker., E. Mathijs. (eds) Watching The Lord of the Rings: Tolkien's World Audiences . Media and Culture Peter Lang, New York pp. 83-102.


Barker, M. 2006. A very American fable: the making of a Mohicans adaptation. In R. B. Palmer. (ed) Nineteenth-Century American Fiction on Screen. Cambridge University Press pp. 9-28. Cadair Other

Barker, M.J., Egan, K., Mathijs, E. 2006. De mondiale receptie van The Lord of the Rings: Een methodologische uitdaging. [The worldwide reception of the Lord of the Rings: a methodological challenge.] Tijdschrift voor Communiatiewetenschap 34 (1) pp. 7-27.

Barker, M. 2006. Envisaging ‘Visualisation’: Some challenges from the international Lord of the Rings audience project. Film Philosophy 10 (3) pp. 1-25. Cadair Other

Barker, M. 2006. I have seen the Future and it is not here yet...: Or, on being Ambitious for Audience Research. Communication Review 9 (2) pp. 123-141. Cadair Other

Barker, M.J. 2006. I have seen the future and it is not here yet ...: Or, on being ambitious for audience research. In I. Charpentier. (ed) Comment sont Recųes les Oeuvres? Éditions Créaphis, Paris pp. 27-42.

Barker, M.J. 2006. Making Middle-earth Sound Real: The Cultural Politics of the BBC Radio Edition. In E. Mathijs. (ed) The Lord of the Rings: Popular Culture in Global Context. Columbia University Press, London pp. 61-70.

Barker, M. 2006. Menstrual Monsters: The reception of the Ginger Snaps cult horror franchise. Film International 4 (21) pp. 68-77. Cadair

Barker, M.J. 2006. On being a 1960s Tolkien reader. In E. Mathijs., M. Pomerance. (eds) From Hobbits to Hollywood: Essays on Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings. Contemporary Cinema Brill, Amsterdam pp. 81-100.

Egan, K., Barker, M. 2006. Rings around the World: Notes on the Challenges, Problems & Possibilities of International Audience Projects. Participations 3 (2) Cadair Other


Barker, M. 2005. The Lord of the Rings and ‘Identification’: A Critical Encounter. European Journal of Communication 20 (3) pp. 353-378. Cadair

Barker, M., Mathijs, E. 2005. Understanding Vernacular Experiences of Film in an Academic Environment. Art, Design & Communication in Higher Education 4 (1) pp. 49-71. Cadair Other


Barker, M.J. 2004. News, Reviews, Clues, Interviews and Other Ancillary Materials: A Critique and Research Proposal. Scope : an Online Journal of Film Studies

Barker, M. 2004. Violence Redux. In S. J. Schneider. (ed) New Hollywood Violence. Manchester University Press pp. 57-79. Cadair Other


Barker, M. 2003. Crash, theatre audiences, and the idea of ‘liveness’. Studies in Theatre and Performance 23 (1) pp. 21-39. Cadair Other

Barker, M. 2003. Assessing the ‘Quality’ in Qualitative Research The Case of Text–Audience Relations. European Journal of Communication 18 (3) pp. 315-335. Cadair Other

Barker, M.J., Austin, T. 2003. Contemporary Hollywood Stardom. Taylor & Francis


Barker, M. 2002. Crashing Out. Screen 43 (1) pp. 74-8. Cadair Other

Barker, M. 2002. Kicked into the Gutters: or, 'My Dad doesn't read comics, he studies them'. International Journal of Comic Art pp. 64-77. Cadair Other

Barker, M.J. 2002. The Newson Report: A case study in "common-sense". In W. Brooker., D. Jermyn. (eds) The Audience Studies Reader. Taylor & Francis, London pp. 74-90.


Barker, M.J., Petley, J. 2001. Ill Effects: The Media-Violence Debate. Communication and Society 2nd edn, Taylor & Francis

Barker, M.J., Petley, J. 2001. Introduction: From bad research to good – a guide to the perplexed. In M. Barker., J. Petley. (eds) Ill Effects: The Media/Violence Debate. Communication and Society 2nd edn, Taylor & Francis, Lonodn pp. 1-26.

Barker, M.J. 2001. On the problems of being a "trendy travesty". In M. Barker., J. Petley. (eds) Ill Effects: The Media/Violence Debate. 2nd edn, Taylor & Francis, Lonodn pp. 202-224.

Barker, M.J. 2001. Reflections on "The Problems with Racism". In P. Essed., D. T. Goldberg. (eds) Race Critical Theories: Text and Context. Wiley, Oxford pp. 471-480.

Harindranath, R., Barker, M., Arthurs, J. 2001. The Crash Controversy: Censorship Campaigns and Film Reception. Wallflower Press Cadair


Barker, M.J., Austin, T. 2000. From Antz To Titanic: Reinventing Film Analysis. Pluto Press

Barker, M.J., Austin, T. 2000. Reply to Brereton’s review of From Antz To Titanic. Film Philosophy 4 (27)


Barker, M.J., Brooks, K. 1999. Bleak futures by proxy. In R. Maltby., M. Stokes. (eds) Identifying Hollywood’s Audiences: Cultural Identity and the Movies. BFI Publishing, London pp. 162-174.

Barker, M.J. 1999. Fredric Wertham: The sad case of the unhappy humanist. In J. A. Lent. (ed) Pulp Demons: International Dimensions of the Postwar Anti-Comics Campaign. Fairleigh Dickinson University Press

Barker, M.J. 1999. Getting a conviction: Or, how the British horror comics campaign only just succeeded. In J. A. Lent. (ed) Pulp Demons: International Dimensions of the Postwar Anti-Comics Campaign. Fairleigh Dickinson University Press


Barker, M.J. 1998. Audiences R Us. In R. Dickinson., O. Linné., R. Harindranath. (eds) Approaches to Audiences. Taylor & Francis

Barker, M.J. 1998. Film audience research: Making a virtue out of necessity. IRIS 26 pp. 131-148.

Barker, M.J., Brooks, K. 1998. Knowing Audiences: Judge Dredd, its Friends, Fans and Foes. John Libbey Publishing

Barker, M.J., Brooks, K. 1998. On looking into Bourdieu’s black box. In R. Dickinson., O. Linné., R. Harindranath. (eds) Approaches to Audiences. Foundations in Media Taylor & Francis pp. 218-232.


Barker, M.J., Petley, J. 1997. Ill Effects: The Media-Violence Debate. 1st edn, Taylor & Francis

Barker, M.J. 1997. Taking the extreme case: Understanding a fascist fan of Judge Dredd. In D. Cartmell., H. Kaye., I. Hunter., I. Whelehan. (eds) Trash Aesthetics: Popular Culture and its Audience. Pluto Press pp. 14-30.


Barker, M.J., Sabin, R. 1996. The Lasting of the Mohicans: History of an American Myth. Studies in Popular Culture University Press of Mississippi


Barker, M.J. 1995. Drawing attention to the image: Computers and comics. In M. Lister. (ed) The Photographic Image in Digital Culture. Comedia Taylor & Francis pp. 188-213.

Barker, M.J. 1995. Very nearly in front of the children: The story of Alternity. In C. Bazalgette., D. Buckingham. (eds) In Front Of The Children: Screen Entertainment and Young Audiences. BFI Publishing pp. 201-216.

Barker, M.J. 1995. Violence. Sight and Sound pp. 10-14.


Barker, M.J. 1993. On seeing how far you can see: The fans of "Judge Dredd". In D. Buckingham. (ed) Reading Audiences: Young People and the Media. Manchester University Press pp. 159-183.


Barker, M.J. 1992. Lost directions?: Cultural studies and the turn to ethnography. In B. Musgrove., R. Snow-McLean. (eds) Signifying Others: Selected Papers from the Second Cultural Studies Association of Australia Conference. University of Southern Queensland Press pp. 1-6.

Barker, M.J., Beezer, A. 1992. Reading into Cultural Studies. Taylor & Francis


Barker, M.J. 1990. Action - The Story of a Violent Comic. Titan Books


Barker, M.J. 1989. Comics: Ideology, Power and the Critics. Cultural Politics Manchester University Press


Barker, M.J. 1988. News bias and the miners' strike: the debate continues ...: TV and the miners' strike. Media, Culture and Society 10 (1) pp. 107-112.


Barker, M.J. 1987. Mass media studies and the question of ideology. Radical Philosophy 46 pp. 27-33.


Barker, M.J. 1984. A Haunt of Fears: The Strange History of the British Horror Comics Campaign. Pluto Press

Barker, M.J. 1984. The Video Nasties: Freedom and Censorship in the Arts. Pluto Press


Barker, M.J. 1983. Empiricism and racism. Radical Philosophy 33 pp. 6-15.

Barker, M.J., Beezer, A., Grimshaw, J. 1983. Methods for cultural studies students. In D. Punter. (ed) Introduction to Contemporary Cultural Studies. Longman

Barker, M.J., Beezer, A. 1983. Scarman and the language of racism. International Socialism 18 pp. 108-125.


Barker, M.J. 1982. Biology and ideology: The uses of reductionism. In S. Rose. (ed) Against Biological Determinism. Allison & Busby pp. 9-29.


Barker, M.J. 1981. Human biology and the possibility of socialism. In J. Mepham., D. Ruben. (eds) Issues in Marxist Philosophy. Harvester Press pp. 43-82.

Barker, M.J. 1981. The New Racism: Conservatives and the Ideology of the Tribe. Junction Books


Barker, M.J. 1980. Kant as a problem for Weber. British Journal of Sociology 31 (2) pp. 224-245.