Missed Connections: American Studies and Contemporary Media Theory (NEASA, Providence 10/12; abstracts due 3/19)

full name / name of organization: 
New England American Studies Association

Brief abstracts are sought for a panel on the intersections between American Studies and Contemporary Media Theory to be proposed for the 2012 New England American Studies Association Conference.

This panel seeks to trace— and open up— productive routes of conversation between the methods, approaches, and sites of inquiry developed in the fields of American Studies and contemporary media theory, broadly conceived. Papers may address a wide range of questions that are of interest to both Americanists and media theorists such as material culture, aesthetics, and design; communication and ecology; historiography; power, identity, and difference; the "new" economy; and the question of the global. Ultimately, this panel will ask what might be gained through an encounter between American Studies and recent theoretical approaches to the study of technology, information, and communications media.

Topics may include (but are by no means limited to):
•U.S. material culture and the philosophy of technology, objects, and things
•Canadian media theory (McLuhan, Innis, Massumi, etc.)
•media archaeology in a U.S. context
•U.S. state violence, biopolitics, and ecologies of perception
•telecommunications media and technologies of U.S. empire
•U.S. media theory avant la lettre
•race, gender, nation, and the posthuman
•networks, global media, and the turn to transnational American Studies
•biotechnology, citizenship, and the human
•media convergence and/as labor history

Please send a 200-300 word abstract and a brief biographical statement to michael_litwack@brown.edu by Monday March 19, 2012.