OPEN CALLS

Universidade Católica Portuguesa | 9-11 May 2019
Deadline for submissions: 30 November 2018

The first biennial Cultural Literacy in Europe Conference took place in London in April 2015; the second in Warsaw in 2017. We are now pleased to announce the Call for Papers for the third Biennial Conference, to be held at the Universidade Católica Portuguesa (Lisbon) in May 2019.

What is cultural literacy? Cultural Literacy (see http://cleurope.eu/about/) is an ability to view the social and cultural phenomena that shape our lives – bodies of knowledge, fields of social action, individuals or groups, and of course cultural artefacts – as being essentially readable. It engages with interdisciplinarity, multilingualism and collaboration. It is as much about innovation and creative practice – whether scholarly, artistic or social – as it is about analysis, and it often brings these two methods together.

What is conviviality? As a series of acts of negotiation, culture is inextricably linked to the exchange of goods and ideas, cosmopolitization, hybridization and mobility (Cronin, 2002, 2010). This calls for a new brand of cosmopolitanism, one that is not ‘from above’ (Hall and Werbner, 2008), and for a convivial culture in which ‘the recognition of mutual worth, dignity and essential similarity imposes restrictions on how we can behave if we wish to act justly’ (Gilroy, 2004: 4). The project of conviviality depends on the translatability of human experience, of literacy as translation, and an ethics of heterogeneity and education, which reminds us that cultures are not homogeneous and do not sit still (Sen, 2006: 112-113). It also leads to a re-reading of the past through the lens of present-day concerns, as these often relate to ‘a post-imperial melancholia’ (Gilroy, 2004), which may translate into a need to ‘decolonise’ Europe (Sayyid and Barnor, 2006) and promote a ‘subaltern cosmopolitanism’ (Sousa Santos, 2002).

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Aesthetics of Gentrification: Art, Architecture, and Displacement
University of Oregon in Portland | April 5-6, 2019
Deadline for submissions: October 8, 2018

Organized by the University of Oregon SLOW LAB, this interdisciplinary conference brings together scholars from across the humanities, social sciences, and art and design fields to explore the aesthetic dimensions of gentrification in the present era of accelerated urbanism.

Gentrification is reshaping cities worldwide, resulting in seductive spaces and exclusive communities that aspire to innovation, creativity, sustainability, and technological sophistication. Gentrification is also contributing to growing socialspatial division and urban inequality and precarity. In a time of escalating housing crisis and unaffordable cities, scholars speak of eco-gentrification, technogentrification, super-gentrification, and planetary-gentrification to describe the different forms and scales of involuntary displacement occurring in vulnerable communities in response to current patterns of development and the hype-driven discourses of the creative city, smart city, and sustainable city.

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(Dis-)covering ciphers: objects, voices, bodies
Deadline for submissions: October 31st, 2018

Cipher1 /ˈsī-fər/

noun: a secret or disguised way of writing; a code. “he wrote cryptic notes in a cipher”. Synonyms: code, secret writing. Dated: a zero; a figure 0. Synonyms: zero, nought, nil, 0. Archaic: naught. “a row of ciphers”.

verb: put (a message) into secret writing; encode. “he left two, as yet uncracked, ciphered messages for posthumous decoding”. Archaic: do arithmatic.

To analyze the ways in which cultural objects acquire meaning can also be understood as looking at the technologies by which those objects have become enciphered. In this issue of Diffractions we aim to look at the concept of the cipher in its myriad ways of appearing, be they cultural, social, political, technological, linguistic or economic in nature.

Histories of Migrant Knowledges in and across the Transpacific. Agencies, Scales, Translations
May 28 – June 4, 2019 | University of California, Berkeley
Deadline for submissions: October 25, 2018

The Forum Transregionale Studien and the Max Weber Stiftung – German Humanities Institutes Abroad in cooperation with the Pacific Regional Office of the German Historical Institute Washington DC (GHI West) at UC Berkeley, The Maria Sibylla Merian Center for Advanced Latin American Studies in the Humanities and Social Sciences (CALAS), and the Institute of European Studies, UC Berkeley, invite scholars with an interest in history from all fields, including history, literary studies, geography, environmental humanities, sociology, political science, anthropology, ethnic studies, economics, or legal studies to apply to attend a Transregional Academy that will be convened from May 28 to June 4, 2019, at UC Berkeley on the theme of "Histories of Migrant Knowledges in and across the Transpacific: Agencies, Scales, Translations".

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Neurohumanities: Promises & Threats
Lisbon, July 1-6, 2019
Deadline for submissions: March 15, 2019

When the US government declared the 1990s “The decade of the brain”, it aimed at raising public awareness toward the use of neuroscience for the enhancement of life quality and as a way to better address the challenges of growing life expectancy. The initiative was further supported by substantial research funding, which not only impressed public opinion but appealed to many research fields. Finding a link to brain research and the processes of the human mind, many disciplines were repositioned and adopted the “neuro” prefix, promising new insights into age-old problems by reframing them from the angle of the brain-mind continuum.

Neuroscience seeks to explain how the brain works and which neurophysiological processes are involved in complex cognitive abilities like sensation and perception attention and reasoning, memory and thought.

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Feminist Ghosts: The New Cultural Life of Feminism
Deadline for submissions: November 30, 2015

Over the last two decades, feminist scholarship has consistently drawn attention to the “post-feminist sensibility” (Gill, 2007) overtaking cultural imagination, wherein feminism is only alluded to “in order that it can be understood as having passed away” (McRobbie, 2011). Deemed responsible for disavowing feminist politics and for encouraging a disidentification with feminist struggles on the part of (younger) women, this postfeminist turn shifted attention to individual success, financial satisfaction and heterosexual realization, ousting the plurality of feminist subjectivities.

Recently, however, feminism seems to have reentered the sphere of public awareness, both in political discourse and popular culture. As McRobbie put it, “in endless conjuring up a demon that must be extinguished (in this case feminism), that demon demonstrates something of its lingering afterlife and its ghostly power” (2011: 183). Phenomena such as Beyoncé’s appropriation of Chimamanda Adichie’s talk “We Should All be Feminists”; Emma Watson’s speech at the UN Women HeforShe campaign launch, in which she urged men to stand up for women’s rights; several Hollywood actresses coming forward to denounce the gender pay gap and other inequalities in the film business; Facebook CEO Sheryl Sandberg’s bestseller Lean In on the work-family balance; the controversial success of Lena Dunham’s Girls on HBO, among many other instances, have not only contributed to a renewed visibility of feminism in social life, but also to bring forth the new contradictions and challenges (radical) feminism is facing today.

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