Dr Keith Wagner

Dr Keith Wagner



Faculty of Arts & Humanities

Joined UCL
3rd Oct 2016

Research summary

Keith B. Wagner is an Assistant Professor of Global Media and Culture and Director of M.Phil/PhD Research in Film and Media Studies at University College London. Throughout his career, Dr Wagner's research necessitate thinking beyond the nation-state that has been key to an earlier formation for Film Studies. His research focuses on six areas related to economic and cultural globalization and how those themes are refracted through film and media across the globe: 1) neoliberal globalization and the financialization of culture; 2) urban development and the representation of cities, particularly London and Seoul on screen; 3) media systems in the Global North and South; 4) advocacy and health in a global context; 5) regional subculture and nationalism; and 6) the cultural dimensions of work. 

In other ways, his advocacy for global cinema as a concept and issue-based premise was developed in the edited collections, Neoliberalism and Global Cinema: Capital, Culture and Marxist Critique (2011) and Fredric Jameson and Film Theory: Marxism, Allegory, Geopolitics in World Cinema (2021), as well as in the social science journal, Globalizations (2015). Currently, he is co-editing a new book arguing that the deceleration of cultural globalization is an erroneous assertion and that large-scale cultural formations in literature and film have validity, in Against Deglobalization. In conjunction with his work on global cinema, he has a forthcoming monograph dedicated to work culture entitled Labor Insecurity: Precarity in Cinemas from the North and South which will be published in 2021.

Elsewhere, Professor Wagner holds an intense interest in different national cinemas, comprising another strand of his research output. His co-edited collection China's iGeneration: Cinema and Moving Image Culture for the Twenty-First Century (2014) was devoted to China's emerging post-WTO film culture and its interconnectedness with digital media. Dr Wagner has also published extensively on Korean art and film, gaining recent attention by The New York Times for his edited book Korean Art from 1953: Collision, Innovation, Interaction (2020) and his book chapter, Train to Busan: Glocalization, Korean Zombies, and a Man-Made Neoliberal Disaster chapter quoted in NBC News. In regional and transnational terms, Dr Wagner has ventured into media and infrastructural studies. His comparative analysis of CCTV Africa was published in Screening China's Soft Power in 2017. He is currently formulating work that analyzes the cultural importance of TikTok and Arirang Television. 


Occupying his time at the moment are three additional edited collections: The Asian Media Industry; Global London on Screen: Sojourners, Cosmopolitans, and Foreigners’ Cinematic Visions of a Multicultural City, and finally, an edited collection entitled Recessions in Film and Television Since 2008: Austerity, Survival, and Work Culture under Late Neoliberalism which picks up on some of the questions asked in his Neoliberalism and Global Cinema book. At present, Keith's published work has been translated into Turkish, Korean and Chinese.


University College London
Other Postgraduate qualification (including professional), ATQ03 - Recognised by the HEA as a Fellow | 2019


Dr Wagner completed his undergraduate education at Fairfield University and Yale University, received an M.Phil from the University of Cambridge and completed his PhD at King's College, London.