k(NO)w tomorrow: Contradictions of Imagining the Future

full name / name of organization: 
Cultural Studies Student Organizing Committee (SOC) at George Mason University
contact email: 
ahorwitz@gmu.edu

The Cultural Studies Student Organizing Committee (SOC) at George Mason University invites paper proposals for our 4th annual Cultural Studies Graduate Conference. The Conference will take place on Saturday, September 25th at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia.

Call for Papers

“Utopia,” according to Frederic Jameson, “has always been a political issue, an unusual destiny for a literary form.” Human history has had no shortage of fantasies of perfect worlds, or of dystopian visions that form their obverse. Even today, when the notion of “progress” is subject to fraught debate, utopian hopes and dystopian warnings can be found in discourses ranging from advertising to religion, film to cable news.

This interdisciplinary conference seeks to explore the idea of utopia, as well as dystopia—the aesthetic, ethical, and political implications of these concepts. It will consider historical and contemporary utopian communities, as well as representations of utopia and dystopia in film, literature, television, and music. Papers should consider the relevance and efficacy of thinking utopias and dystopias within the context of academic research.

Possible topics include looking at utopias and dystopias in the following contexts:

• Historical Practices
• Technology
• Non-Western/Subcultural/Marginal/Minority Groups
• Progress
• Political & Media Rhetoric
• Sexuality
• Limitations
• Environment and Ecology
• Cultural Representations (Film, Art, Television, Music, etc.)
• The Role of in Academic Work

Abstracts of 300 words and a current CV should be sent to Ariella Horwitz (ahorwitz AT gmu DOT edu) by 15 May 2010. Please include the title, presenter’s name, institutional affiliation, contact information, A/V requests, and any special needs required. Abstracts should be sent as .doc or .rtf file attachments.

cfp categories: 
cultural_studies_and_historical_approaches
graduate_conferences
interdisciplinary