Call for Papers
The Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA) invites proposals for paper
submissions and panel sessions for its yearly International Workshop.
How do we analyze, understand, and participate in the world? What are the ways in which
we can think through concepts such as aesthetics, identity, politics, and space to
articulate the object(s) of our inquiry? These are a few of the questions the 2010 ASCA
International Workshop, "Articulation(s)," seeks to explore. The workshop offers a space
in which we can reflect upon such questions and the methodological nuances, theoretical
consequences, and political implications that arise when we interrogate (trans)national
theories, disciplines, and contested object(s).
With its double meaning, to express and to connect, articulation(s) highlights the
contingency of the unities of meaning and of discourse(s) that we ascribe to our object(s)
in question. Articulation(s) is a generative concept that has been prominent in shaping
theory for decades. Working (inter)disciplinarily in the humanities, articulation(s), as a
travelling concept, refers to the engaging of objects, concepts, and theories and the
(im)possibilities of interrogation.
In this workshop articulation(s) is presented in relation to four distinct themes that we
will (re)articulate and/or interrogate to see whether they help us express the
relationships between theories, discipline, and object(s) from our various fields.
These issues will be discussed in four panels:
This panel will focus on concrete analyses utilizing articulation as a tool or strategy for
shaping interventions within a particular social formation, conjuncture, or context. As L.
Grossberg puts it, "articulation is the production of identity on top of differences, of
unities out of fragments, of structures across practices" (1992). When articulation
becomes "a practice of thinking of ‘unity and difference,' of ‘difference in complex unity,'
without becoming a hostage to the privileging of difference as such" (Jennifer Daryl
Slack, 1996), how then, can a social formation like a nation (which is of course inherently
infused with difference), be analyzed in terms of articulation (without overdetermining
and essentializing)? This panel seeks to address questions of national identity and
concrete analyses of articulations of such, but also related issues including articulations of
global phenomena in national contexts.
How can we articulate the aesthetic dimension of migration? The term "migratory
aesthetics" as coined by cultural theorist Mieke Bal (2007) "refers to the migratory - not
to actual migration, but to the cultural inspiration that migration, if encountered on its
own terms, can yield." As migratory aesthetics seeks to explore the transformative
effect on culture, we will also articulate (inter)disciplinarily the effect of migration on
politics, aesthetics, economics, and discourses of the migrant and vice versa. Some of
the questions to be addressed are: How can we articulate the subjective dimensions of
movement and arrival, memory and loss, colonization and decolonization, difference and
sameness? What are the ramifications of migration as a social phenomenon on cultural
Ever since Gaston Bachelard's Poetics of Space (1957) and Henri Lefebvre's Production of
Space (1974), space has become a much-articulated topic in the humanities. Spatial
concepts such as globalism identify contemporary modes of (cultural) production, while
virtual space enables encounters between all kinds of personal and public spaces. In-
between spaces of signification such as borders, bridges, and interstices have become
key terms in defining identity. Space has been a focus in terms of re-defining urban
space, understood as non-spaces such as noise, chaos, and mist. More recently, Jacques
Ranciere's articulation of politics as aesthetics (2004, 2007) opened up discussions on
space onto a wide range of topics, from poetics to politics. This panel then, invites papers
that are engaged with the above themes through responding to the following questions:
How does an emphasis on space contribute to our idea of identity(ies)? Why is it
important to define space? How are the spaces we describe transformed by our
Politics of Mourning
In Precarious Life (2004) Judith Butler writes, "A life that is not supposed to be grieved is
also a life that is not supposed to have existed at all, whose ‘negation' is built into its
very public definition." In this panel we offer a space to reflect upon lives and situations
deemed ungrievable by government, religious, and media agencies in order to investigate
current global, national, and local situations where mourning is politically suppressed or
otherwise regulated. Questions this panel seeks to address are: How is grief intertwined
with articulations of identity? What sorts of grievous activity are inflicted upon us based
on our own articulation(s) of identity, whether we self-identify as of a certain nationality,
gender, or body? As Alison Kooistra (2008) writes, "Identity politics works to articulate
the ‘body personal' within the ‘body politic' [...] This anatomical articulation-the
‘membering' of distinct parts to form a larger whole-is accomplished through a verbal
articulation-speaking out, claiming a label or banner, or constructing a coherent
narrative." All scholars interested in interrogating established systems of what is (not)
grievable, and the implications of that choice are welcome to participate in this panel.
In keeping with the spirit of tradition, this workshop has been inspired by the 2008-2009
ASCA Theory Seminar entitled "Articulations": Theoretically Speaking.
The deadline for proposals is: September 30, 2009.
Participants are welcome to submit proposals from any discipline and will be subjected to
peer review. Please submit a short autobiographical sketch (150 words) and your
proposal (300 words) to Dr. Eloe Kingma, Managing Director of ASCA (Amsterdam School
for Cultural Analysis) via email or post. Please indicate which of the four themes you
would like to participate in, and if your presentation will include video, projection, or
Those selected to participate will be asked to provide a 3000 word paper (excluding
bibliography) by January 4, 2010, so that the papers can be distributed in advance of the
workshop. In order to allow for a sufficient amount of discussion time, papers will not be
read. Instead, participants will be asked to provide a short summary of their argument or
to respond to another panelist(s)'s paper for a maximum of 10 minutes.
Proposals should be sent to:
Dr. Eloe Kingma (Managing Director)
Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis
Email: [log in to unmask]
Visit the website at http://www.hum.uva.nl/asca
The German Studies Call for Papers List
Editor: Stefani Engelstein
Acting Assistant Editor: Olaf Schmidt
Sponsored by the University of Missouri
Info available at: http://www.missouri.edu/~graswww/resources/gerlistserv.html