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Call for Artices: (Un-)Boundedness: On Mobility and Belonging
full name / name of organization:
Diffractions - Graduate Journal for the Study of Culture
(Un-)Boundedness: On Mobility and Belonging
Deadline for submissions: November 15 2013
In a “liquid modernity”, to use Zygmunt Bauman’s terminology, everything is more fluid and flexible, “neither fix[ing] space nor bind[ing] time” (Bauman, 2000: 2). Whereas in the past, one could find deeply rooted social organizations and solid cultural configurations, in modern times, people and institutions have become increasingly deterritorialized. The fact that no one nor anything remains the same or in the same place for too long has had an enormous impact on how identities and communities are shaped, perceived and performed. They are no longer marked by permanence and stability but by mobility, change and imagination.
Mobility is often depicted as the opposite of belonging. Yet, these constantly shifting spaces and relationships, these global cultural flows or interactions Arjun Appadurai calls –scapes (ethnoscapes, technoscapes, financescapes, mediascapes, and ideoscapes) (Appadurai, 1996), whilst pointing to a growing sense of heterogeneity and transiency, also promote cultural exchange and new scales of belonging. Indeed, people appear to be always in transit especially through “non-places”, “space[s] which cannot be defined as relational, or historical, or concerned with identity” (Augé, 1995: 77-78), yet, at the same time, foster a situational and transitory feeling of belonging.
Nevertheless, this rising globalized circulation does not necessarily imply the standardization of the social fabric. In fact, this mobility is taking place unevenly, at different paces and intensities, bringing visibility to globalization as a complex and multiform process, as the motor of both similarity and difference, dialogue and conflict, proximity and distance, boundedness and unboundedness. On the one hand, access to other cultures becomes easier and migratory movements increasingly more frequent, thus contributing to a regular contact with what is deemed different and unfamiliar. However, on the other hand, it is often the case that mobility, “frequent repotting” (Putnam, 2000: 204), displacement and uprootedness lead to disparity, exclusion, and to the creation of hybridized (Bhabha, 1994; Canclini 1995) or liminal (Turner, 1967; 1969) forms of life. This tense relationship between two or more different cultures contributes to the development of hybrid or borderland identities built upon both negotiation and transgression yet allowing the invention of new subjectivities, cartographies and categories of difference and belonging.
Themes to be addressed by contributors may include but are not restricted to the following:
• Mobility and (Be)Longing: Migration, Diaspora, Exile and Homecomings
We look forward to receiving articles of no more than 20 A4 pages (not including bibliography) and a short bio of about 150 words by November 15, 2013 at the following address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
DIFFRACTIONS also accepts book reviews that may not be related to the issue’s topic. If you wish to write a book review, please contact us at email@example.com.
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