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CFP: Advertising and Consumer Culture conference, May 31 - DEADLINE MARCH 25, 2013
full name / name of organization:
Centre for Modern Studies Postgraduate Forum / University of York
CALL FOR PAPERS: University of York Centre for Modern Studies Third Annual Interdisciplinary Postgraduate Symposium
Commercial speech – advertising – makes up most of what we share as a culture . . . As the language of commercialism has become louder, the language of high culture has become quieter.
Throughout the modern period, advertising and consumer culture have dominated everyday life; moreover, the trappings of commercialism permeate much of supposed ‘high culture’. Commodities clutter the pages of novels from Dickens and Zola to Bret Easton Ellis; works by Joyce and DeLillo are enlivened by advertising jingles and slogans; brands and trademarks pervade the practice of artists from Picasso to Warhol and the visualisation of consumer desire is appropriated and challenged in the work of Richard Hamilton and Martha Rosler.
Whether celebrating or critiquing advertising and consumer culture, art reflects our enduring fascination with them, despite research into the psychological effects of advertising, concerns over the evils of consumerism, and the often sinister nature of market research. The recent television show Mad Men, for instance, has revivified interest and scholarly debate surrounding the power of advertising and the consumer, as well as restaging debates around sexism, truth and the heteronormative ideal. Meanwhile, sociology in the wake of Erving Goffman continues to explore advertising’s uses and abuses of gender, identity and desire. Countervailing against consumerism and advertising’s many critics, theorists such as Michel de Certeau and the critical movement Thing Theory have endeavoured to examine advertising and consumer culture from a standpoint that goes beyond the model of the ‘passive consumer’ or Marx’s account of commodity fetishism.
We invite abstracts for 20 minute papers from postgraduate students and early-career researchers working in the modern period (1850-present day) across the humanities and social sciences. This conference aims to provoke interdisciplinary discussion about advertising and consumer culture. We therefore welcome papers that address these topics from historical, sociological, political or anthropological perspectives, as well as papers that analyse advertisements themselves and the representation of advertising and modern consumer culture in literature, film, television, theatre, and visual art.
Topics for discussion may include but are by no means limited to:
Abstracts for papers should be no more than 300 words in length, and submitted by Monday 25th March 2013 to firstname.lastname@example.org. We ask that applicants also include a short biography. For further information about the symposium or the CModS Postgraduate Forum, please contact us at this address, or visit http://www.york.ac.uk/modernstudies/postgraduate-forum/