EVENT Apr 30
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Emmanuelle, Black Emanuelle, and Emmanuelle Derivatives: Essays on the Emmanuelle Legacy

Organization: N/A
Categories: Popular Culture, Film, TV, & Media
Event Date: 2023-04-30 Abstract Due: 2023-04-30


In 1974 Just Jaeckin’s film, Emmanuelle, was released to commercial success. The movie propelled its starlet, Sylvia Kristel, into the limelight, spurred a wave of similar erotic fare, and concurrently with the Golden Age of Porn, helped usher in mainstream acceptance of erotic content in cinema. Black Emanuelle, one of the many films that came in the wake of Emmanuelle, would go on to have its own impact, specifically in the realm of Italian cult cinema with its plethora of sequels starring Laura Gemser. The Emmanuelle, Black Emanuelle, and derivative Emmanuelle film phenomena lasted from the mid-70s to the early 80s before interest tapered off, though the Emmanuelle name continued to be used by producer Alain Siritzky for direct to cable softcore content.

Four decades later, the Emmanuelle movies have faded in pop culture memory, but are being kept alive with blu-ray releases from specialty and boutique labels such as Severin Films and Kino Lorber. While most of the Kristel and Gemser films are readily obtainable, scholarship on the Emmanuelle legacy is not. The majority of references to both Emmanuelleand Black Emmanuelle are found in film guides and books that focus on cult and exploitation films in a general sense (see the bibliography section at the end of this CFP) with a journal article here and there. Alex Cox’s 2000 documentary,Emmanuelle: A Hard Look, remains largely inaccessible, though companies like the aforementioned Severin Films release supplementary material on their Black Emanuelle and Emmanuelle derivative DVDs and Blu-rays. There is no singular, consolidated resource focused on the Emmanuelle film canon.

This proposed collection of essays will strive to rectify this scholarship gap. This CFP seeks abstracts that analyze the films that make up the Emmanuelle legacy (see filmography below), with the aim to illustrate the various ways these movies are important, how they impacted both pop and film culture, and to illuminate subtexts and commentaries they impart.



Frameworks, essay ideas, and topics might include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Adaptations
  • Anti/Reverse Emmanuelle roles/films
  • Auteur theory (specific films and their directors)
  • Class and wealth depictions
  • Close textual analysis
  • Comparative textual analysis
  • Cosmopolitanism
  • Cultural and racial representations
  • Feminism studies
  • Ethical/Philosophical issues
  • Genre studies (porn-chic, softcore, exploitation, grindhouse, travelog, cannibal film, women in prison, etc.)
  • LBGT+ discourse and ideology
  • Interviews with/perspectives from crew/filmmakers
  • Literature studies (Emmanuelle Arsan books)
  • Monster Studies (Emmanuelle vs. Dracula, Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals)
  • Multiplicities (see Cycles, Sequels, Spin-offs, Remakes, and Reboots eds. Klein & Palmer)
  • Music studies (soundtracks, songs, sampling)
  • Parody and/or homage (Carry on Emmanuelle, SNL’s “Danielle” skit, Seinfeld’s “Rochelle, Rochelle”)
  • Proto-Emmanuelle films (what came before, what inspired)
  • (Post) Colonialism
  • Schreiber theory (specific screenwriters)
  • Semiotics and metaphors
  • Sequential Art Studies (Crepax Emmanuelle comics)
  • Sexuality (fetishism, voyeurism, exhibitionism, desires, romance, etc.)
  • Vernacular film (see Mikel Koven)
  • World Cinema studies (France, Italy)
  • And other interdisciplinary approaches


Films that fall under the Emmanuelle/Black Emanuelle/Et al. canon include the following:

Emmanuelle Series

  • Emmanuelle (1974)
  • Emmanuelle II (1975)
  • Goodbye Emmanuelle (1977)
  • Emmanuelle IV (1984)
  • Emmanuelle 5 (1987)
  • Emmanuelle 6 (1988)
  • Emmanuelle 7 (1993)
  • Emmanuelle in Space Series (1994)
  • Young/Old Emmanuelle Series (1993)
  • Emmanuelle 2000 series (2000)
  • Emmanuelle in Rio (2003)
  • Emmanuelle: The Private Collection series (2003)
  • Emmanuelle Tango (2006)
  • Emmanuelle Through Time Series (2011)

Black Emanuelle Series and Laura Gemser Films

  • Black Emanuelle (1975)
  • Black Emanuelle 2 (1976)
  • Emanuelle in Bangkok (1976)
  • Black Emmanuelle, White Emmanuelle (1976)
  • Emanuelle on Taboo Island (1976)
  • Emmanuelle and the Deadly Black Cobra (1976)
  • Emanuelle in America (1977)
  • Sister Emanuelle (1977)
  • Emanuelle Around the World (1977)
  • Emanuelle and the Last Cannibals (1977)
  • Emanuelle and the White Slave Trade (1978)
  • Divine Emanuelle: Love Cult (1981)
  • Violence in a Woman’s Prison (1982)
  • Emanuelle: Queen of the Desert (1982)
  • Women’s Prison Massacre (1983)
  • Scandalous Emanuelle (1986)

Misc. Films / Derivatives / Parodies / Related Films

  • Emanuelle and Francoise (1975)
  • Laure (1976)
  • Carry on Emmanuelle (1978)
  • Felicity (1979)
  • Emmanuelle in Soho (1981)

There is an IMDB list that has a plethora of Emmanuelle derivatives: https://www.imdb.com/list/ls069765874/

Non-Emmanuelle films that star Sylvia Kristel or Laura Gemser (such as Julia [1974], Alice ou la dernière fugue [1977], etc.), Alain Siritzky produced films, and other Just Jaeckin movies will be considered if they can be strongly tied to theEmmanuelle/Black Emanuelle legacy.

Other related texts, such as the Emmanuelle Arsan novels, the Emmanuelle erotic comics by Guido Crepax, and the like, are also of interest.


Abstracts (no word limit), preliminary bibliographies, and CVs should be submitted to Nicholas Diak at vnvdiak@gmail.com.

There is no publisher chosen for this project yet. Due to the subject matter and the speciality, niche interest of this proposed book, the goal is to amass a collection of abstracts first for the purposes of having a solid proposal and preliminary table of contents, and then procure a publisher. A proper timetable for first draft submissions will be drawn up after a publisher is obtained.

Please feel free to share this CFP with other scholars. Any proliferation is much appreciated.

About the Editor

Nicholas Diak is a pop culture scholar with a range of interests: sword and sandal films, industrial music, synthwave music and aesthetics, horror studies, and other idiosyncratic topics. He edited the collection The New Peplum: Essays on Sword and Sandal Films and Television Programs Since the 1990s (2018) and co-edited Horror Literature from Gothic to Post-Modern: Critical Essays (2020). More information, including academic CV, can be found at nickdiak.com.


Emmanuelle Studies Bibliography

100 Cult Films by Ernest Mathijs and Xavier Mendik
Alternative Europe: Eurotrash and Exploitation Cinema Since 1945 edited by Mathijs and Mendik
“Black is Beautiful” in DarkSide issue 211
Bodies of Desire and Bodies in Distress: The Golden Age of Italian Cult Cinema 1970-1985 by Mendik
Deadlier Than the Male: Femme Fatales in 1960s and 1970s Cinema by Douglas Brode
“Forever Emmanuelle: Sylvia Kristel and Soft-Core Cult” by Leila Wimmer in Cult Film Stardom
The History of French Literature on Film by Kate Griffiths and Andrew Watts
Immoral Tales: Sex and Horror Cinema in Europe 1956-1984 by Tohill and Tombs
“The Legacy of Emmanuelle: Oriental Desire and Interracial Encounters 562 in European Films Set in Thailand 1974-1980” by Alexander J. Klemm
“Mondo Realism, the Sensual Body, and Genre Hybridity in Joe D’Amato’s Emanuelle Films” by Mario DeGiglio-Bellemare
Offbeat Attractions and Processes of Cultification edited by Egan and Thomas
“Orientalism, Star Power and Cinethetic Racism in Seventies Italian Exploitation Cinema” by Calum Waddell
Sylvia Kristel: From Emmanuelle to Chabrol by Jeremy Richey
“Thailand in the European Cinematic Imagination: The Phenomenon and Legacy of Emmanuelle (Fr 1974)” by Alexander J. Klemm
Undressing Emmanuelle: A memoir by Sylvia Kristel





Nicholas Diak