From The Journal Of Screenwriting V3 Issue 1: The constructive use of film genre for the screenwriter: The relevant knowledge component of the mental space of film genre by Jule Selbo

Highlighting the articles in the past editions of the Journal of Screenwriting, of which I am the Book Reviews Editor. Hopefully these abstracts will entice you to did a little deeper into the history and future of screenwriting. — Rosanne


The constructive use of film genre for the screenwriter: The relevant knowledge component of the mental space of film genre by Jule Selbo

This exploration is a continuation of my work on the ‘mental space of film genre’, a term I have coined to introduce a terminology to investigate the use of film genre for the screenwriter as he or she constructs a screenplay. Understanding this use of film genre may add to the screenwriter’s other technical skills such as knowledge of story structure and character construction. I have previously delineated the first two elements of the mental space of film genre in the second issue of the Journal of Screenwriting – schematic knowledge (the use of film genre as a framing device) and specific knowledge (the understanding of film genre the audience brings to the viewing of filmic narratives). This work will then focus on what I believe to be the important third element of the mental space of film genre – relevant knowledge.


The Journal of Screenwriting is an international double-blind peer-reviewed journal that is published three times a year. The journal highlights current academic and professional thinking about the screenplay and intends to promote, stimulate and bring together current research and contemporary debates around the screenplay whilst encouraging groundbreaking research in an international arena. The journal is discursive, critical, rigorous and engages with issues in a dynamic and developing field, linking academic theory to screenwriting practice. 

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