[csaa-forum] Mulvey/Berlant: politics of memory conf

TANIA Lewis tania.lewis at rmit.edu.au
Thu Feb 9 09:02:48 CST 2012

FYI, please circulate

The Anual International Conference on Re-Thinking Humanities and Social
Science 3 is to be held at the University of Zadar, Croatia, from the
6th to 9th September 2012. In 2012 we would like to concentrate on the
politics of memory.

Keynote speakers:
·      Laura Mulvey (Department of History of Art and Screen Media,
University of London)
·      Lauren Berlant (Department of English Language and Literature,
University of Chicago)
The politics of memory
How does remembrance shape our links to the past? What is the link
between past and present? How are narratives of past constituted,
maintained or dissipated? How is memory performed? How various
discourses of the past inscribe social relations and subjectivities? How
are our innermost emotions, desires and fantasies articulated with a
discursive space of memory in the present? What is the link between
communication technologies and the ways past is represented? How are we
to understand various technologies of memory?
Today, more than ever, questions such as these raise a more general
concern about the politics of memory. Once, the past was seen as a
stable and known, it was used as a tool to construct collective
identities, nation states, to give us a feeling of belonging and common
origin, to create what was seen as “our heritage”. But today this
“ours” calls heritage, with all its categories, into question.
There has been growing awareness among scholars that the way the past is
remembered is always articulated along specific social axes of
differentiation such as class, gender, ethnic background etc. Each of
these axes is invested with particular meanings, which can differ
according to the different discursive formations that are used as an
interpretative framework. All of these constitute the politics of memory
that is performed in everyday cultural, political and economic
At this conference we problematise the politics of memory and the way
it is embodied in films, photographs, performances, literature, public
art, memorials …. We are especially interested in exploring the
circulation of historical memories that offer the basis of
identification in a given cultural, economic and political moment; (2)
the possible responssive ways to, what Lauren Berlant calls “the
urgencies of a moment (the historical moment, the sexual moment, the
intimate moment, the singular subjective moment where survival time is
another name for ordinary life)” and (3) the ways the new technology
offers an opportunity to “aesthetics of the past to meet the
aesthetics of the present” through “the aesthetic of delay” and
confusion between living and dead (Laura Mulvey).
Possible topics include:
Film, photography and memory
Performing arts and memory
Literature and memory
Sound and memory
Rituals of memory
Memory, public sphere and citizenship
Cultural memory and trauma
Memory and forgetting
Commodity culture and cultural forgetting
Memory and body (memory of bodily movements, scars, pregnancy….)
Memory and autobiographical texts
Memory, gender roles and sexuality
Memory and communication technologies
Place and memory
Proposals are invited from scholars from different fields and
disciplines of humanities and social sciences for individual papers (30
minutes including discussion time).
Please send proposals (no more than 300 words in length) to
rhss.conference at gmail.com by June 1st 2012. Selected conference
papers will be published.

Associate Professor Tania Lewis
Vice Chancellor's Senior Research Fellow
School of Media & Communication
RMIT University
Building 36.3.7 City Campus
GPO Box 2476, Melbourne VIC 3001

ph: +61 3 9925 2406
fax: +61 3 9639 1685
email: tania.lewis at rmit.edu.au

web: www.rmit.edu.au/staff/tania-lewis

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