CFP: Critical Perspectives on Global/Local Tensions in New Media

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Bentley University, UW-Madison
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Critical Perspectives on Global/Local Tensions in New Media

Scholars have used a variety of methods - including political economy, ethnography, cultural geography, cultural studies, and postcolonial studies - to explore the nature of media globalization. Arguments in support of the cultural imperialism thesis as well as arguments for glocalization and cultural hybridity have been offered in order to illuminate the texts, practices, exchanges and tensions that arise from the global, regional, and local production and consumption of new media products and services. This anthology seeks to add to scholarship on the cultural geography of new media networks and products and the tensions between the "global" and the "local" by examining a range of new media case studies. This project considers new media practices, texts, services, software, policies, infrastructures, and design discourses that enrich existing relationships between creative industries and cultures of production, reception, and engagement.

This anthology seeks to add to emerging scholarship on new media industries and global/local tensions in media firms. Work on transnational media companies, in particular, faces the difficulty of exploring the tensions between high-level executives that most closely embody cosmopolitan business elites and local workers whose creative and administrative power is circumscribed by a peripheral status in corporate hierarchies even as the transnational media company relies on local workers' knowledge of tastes, audiences, and regulatory schemas. Emerging scholarship on production cultures emphasizes the strategies and discursive frameworks in which media occupations are defined and how particular constructions of media work are elaborated and contested. While some scholars approach this question from the level of corporate firms and analyze the statements and activities of media professionals, more recent work focuses on what Jean Burgess calls "vernacular creativity," fan labor, and the blurring of professional and amateur roles in what Axel Bruns terms "produsage."

While there is a wealth of scholarship that approaches these questions in relation to advertising, film, and television, much more needs to be said about the cultural and material practices of new media, especially given that new media production often cannot be theorized in the same local/national terms in which creative practices in the film, television, and advertising industries have been analyzed.

We seek papers with prose and diction appropriate for the undergraduate classroom but that are also sophisticated enough to be read by beginning graduate students. While we are open to case studies that illuminate new commercial and sociocultural practices and debates in any national context, we are particularly interested in papers that examine intersections of the global and the local outside of Western Europe and the industrializing nations of the Asia-Pacific region. Despite this project's basis in the English language, we are interested in incorporating authorial voices and topics from a variety of national, regional, and subnational perspectives.

We seek papers that address one or more of the following subject areas:

analog and digital media forms in the global market
the role of new media in constructing "media capitals"
the role of new media platforms in addressing diasporic audiences
challenges of defining the local in the face of complex intersections with the global
debates surrounding media globalization in a specific local contexts
the construction of dominant models of web design and definitions of "quality" web aesthetics
vernacular design aesthetics that resist hegemonic these models
cultural policy and new media industries
global/local visions of the future of computing and digital communication
localized internet and mobile cultures, practices, industries, and technologies
interrogations of the global, local, cosmopolitan, hybrid, or glocal in regard to new media
development strategies and new media infrastructures
multi-scalar digital divides
global/local perspectives on gaming cultures or game development
experiences of place through new media
new media networks and nodes
economies of import and export

Please send a 250-word abstract with a preliminary bibliography by September 1st to either Ben Aslinger (Bentley University, Waltham, MA, USA, or Germaine Halegoua (University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA,
Our plan is for all 5000-word commissioned papers to be due by March 31, 2011.

Ben Aslinger is an assistant professor of Media and Culture in the Department of English and Media Studies at Bentley University.
Germaine Halegoua is currently finishing a dissertation on wired urban infrastructures at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.