Culture and the Economization of Everything- CAAS, March 1, 2014
Economic models now occupy a central place in the analysis of American culture. Concepts such as "cultural capital," "the literary marketplace," and "modes of exchange" are regularly deployed to demystify culture's relationship with power and profit. As useful as economic models have been for opening up new avenues of analysis in American studies, we wonder if this turn to economy in American studies doesn't privilege economic models in ways that ought to be scrutinized. Indeed, it can be argued that the recent financial crises in the United States and Europe are consequences of unquestioned faith in the explanatory and organizing power of economics as a field of knowledge.
We must ask whether the economization of everything, along with the dominance of economic models for analysis, has deprived culture, and cultural study more generally, of modes of resistance and a distinctive field of action. Is it possible or desirable, without reverting to an untenable idealism, to recover a sense of culture as a privileged domain? We invite submissions of papers for a special issue on the topic of culture and economics, but especially papers that privilege culture as a field of knowledge and submit the economic to its critical gaze.
The due date is March 1, 2014. Send electronic copies of your paper to CAAS2013@uwaterloo.ca. Please include two documents:
1) Your paper with your name in the document file name but not in the paper itself; and 2) a document with your name, affiliation, title of paper, contact information, and a biographical notice.
Please see the CRAS website for submission guidelines at:
A conference on this topic was sponsored by the University of Waterloo, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, and the Canadian Association for American Studies in October 2013. To review the conference program, go to http://caas2013.uwaterloo.ca.