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A POLITICS OF DISRUPTION? AESTHETICS AND POST-SOCIALISM, Reyjkavik August 2011
full name / name of organization:
General Conference of the European Consortium for Political Research
Papers are invited for the panel:
The collapse of the USSR and the Eastern Bloc, coupled with the sharp market turn taken by countries such as China and Vietnam, have given rise to a plethora of new aesthetic forms. Such transformations have occurred not only in the traditional arts (painting, music, theatre) but also in the broader culture sphere (space, architecture, new media). A dominant force driving such changes is the introduction of the market economy, which critics argue has enriched only a small number of elites. Through an inversion of working-class cultural hegemony promoted under socialism, the material and aesthetic desires of this newly enriched class have become the same desires of the under-classes. Additionally, it has been argued that the advent of global capitalism within former-socialist states has reified enclaves of socio-cultural difference hitherto resistant to such a project (Jameson). This “disneyfication” of elements ranging from collective memory to ethnic minority culture, illustrates how market forces are pressed into the service of re-emerging (and re-imagined) forms of nationalism. The proposed panel offers an interrogation of this totalizing scenario. Participants are invited to present work on various aesthetic practices and possibilities which resist, embrace, co-opt, re-invent, disrupt or are even indifferent to such forces. Speakers might want to address ways in which earlier socialist aesthetics continue to haunt the present; whether these forms offer any emacipatory value; whether the persistence of authoritarian rule in certain post-socialist states provides forms of resistance predicated on modernist notions of “Truth” (Badiou); and how such potential might contrast with post-modern parliamentary democracies in which such movements are no longer fashionable. The panel, which approaches questions of art and aesthetics in the broadest possible sense, encourages submissions from a wide range of disciplines including anthropology, art history, architecture, cultural studies, political science and urban studies.
Please submit paper proposals by 1 February via the ECPR website below:
Please note that you do not have to be a member of ECPR to propose a paper.