Authoritarianism in Contemporary Culture / Voyages: Journal of Contemporary Humanism
For its upcoming issue, Voyages: Journal of Contemporary Humanism welcomes essays, brief reflections, interviews (written and/or filmed), creative works (poetry, fiction, memoirs, visual arts) that engage with authoritarianism in contemporary culture.
The recent authoritarian turn in global politics—from Turkey to the United States and from Brazil to the Philippines—has caused great consternation in the humanities and social sciences. Probing its underlying causes, scholars across disciplines are calling into question the intellectual foundations of modern democracy—foundations rooted in renaissance humanism and enlightenment political thought. To quote one observer, is the age of humanism over? In other words, has the rational subject of renaissance humanism and enlightenment modernity given way to a new subject defined by unbridled market values and commodified human relations? Or rather, does the current proliferation of authoritarian and neoliberal state actors merely signal the dark underside of the philosophical discourse of modernity as others have previously suggested? Similarly, are we witnessing the birth pangs of a new world order characterized less by hegemony and more by overt forms of domination? Alternately, how can a renewed and critical understanding of the humanist and enlightenment philosophical traditions serve to confront the virulent forms of violence and exclusion that characterize the shifting geopolitical landscape? In short, what are the philosophical and literary resources available to artists and intellectuals seeking to grapple with the erosion of democratic norms in contemporary modes of governance?
Voyages seeks to become a forum for debate on these questions, asking whether this pessimism is justified, where its sources and logic stem from, and most importantly, how humanism, past and present, can serve as a vehicle for resolving the problems facing the world today.
Submissions for the forthcoming issue should be sent no later than November 1.