The Fourth Global Forum of Critical Studies
Asking Big Questions Again

13 - 14 November 2015, Lucca, Italy
Palazzo Bernardini

Deadline for Paper Proposals: 5th of October 2015

The Fourth Euroacademia Global Forum of Critical Studies aims to bring
into an open floor the reflexive and questioning interaction among
academics, intellectuals, practitioners and activists profoundly
concerned with evaluative understandings of the world we’re living in.
The focus of the forum is to initiate an arena where no question is
misplaced and irrelevant as long as we acknowledge that evaluation,
critical thinking and contestation are accessible trajectories to
better understand our past, present and alternative scenarios for the

Conference Description:
Some say that the 21st Century or modernity altogether made humans
more concerned with doing rather than being. As the classical Greek
civilization valued the most reflexive thinking as a form of freedom
from natural necessities, contemporary times profoundly involve
individuals and the imaginary accompanying social practices in a
restless logic of consumption, competition and engagement that
profoundly - or some would say, radically – suspends or indefinitely
postpones the autonomous capacity of human beings to question and
reflect upon the social order and the meaning of social practices. The
fast advancement of the logic of post-industrial societies, the
gradual dissolution of alternative models to the capitalist logic and
a multitude of other alerting factors pushed ahead a global spread
culture of one-dimensional productions of meaning that advances a
closure rather than a constant reflexive re-evaluation of
cultural/social practices.

Many alternatives at hand are often condemned to marginality or lost
in the plural practices where everything goes as long as it’s part of
an intellectual market. The ‘fatal strategies’ of post-industrial
societies to keep individuals captive, busy and seduced by contingent
social arrangements and economic practices minimized the questioning
detachment required to evaluate and give meaning through reflexive
criticism and unlimited interrogation. Various labels were given to
our unfolding times from apocalyptic ones to some more comforting yet
not by chance lacking some vital optimism. Despite a wide-spread
discontent and suspicion towards the daily realities of our current
societies, most of the big questions are often left outside by the
self-involved active pursuit of an imagined well-being that is no
longer transgressed by harsh critical evaluation of its meaning. The
academic arena itself also advances, supports, integrates and promotes
limited particular methodologies that generate an effect of
mainstreaming and often keeps researchers or practitioners out of the
battle-ground for big questions.

The ongoing economic crisis made reality even harsher and pushed ahead
the need for more thinking as many habitual categories lost their
meaning or relevance. New ways of thinking could transgress some
inappropriate conceptions or misconceptions that preserve their
centrality due to the mechanics of habits. This is a time when a call
to thinking is well-placed. This is a call to arms for critical
studies that promotes alternative, questioning and multi-dimensional

When it’s about critical thinking and critical studies there is
intrinsically an unending open list of topics to be included. The
Fourth Euroacademia Forum on Critical Studies proposes the 5 sections
(that are by no means exclusive):

~ Theory/Philosophy
~ Politics
~ Cultural Studies
~ Political Economy
~ Arts and Performance

Papers on the following topics (and not only) are welcomed:
Diagnostics of Our Times: Where Is the 21st Century Heading? ~ Our
Societies Are As Good As It Gets: How to Escape the Closure of
Meaning? ~ Consumerist Societies and the Captivity of Thinking ~ The
Being/Doing Nexus ~ Assessing Models of Capitalism ~ Markets, Capital
and Inequalities ~ The Remains of Individual Autonomy ~ How Plural Our
Societies Truly Are? ~ Debating Ideal vs. Real Multiculturalism ~
Social Narcissism and Consumerism ~ The Role of Critical Thinking:
Proposing Alternative Methodologies ~ Are There Any Alternatives to
Capitalism Left? ~ Social Causes and the Pursuit of Social Beliefs ~
Protest and Social Change ~ Re-Thinking Revolutions ~ Hegemony and the
Remaining Possibilities for Social Criticism ~ Loneliness and
Isolation in the Era of Mass Communication ~ Living Low Cost: Values,
Meaning and Market Exchange ~ Ideology and Other Dominant Narratives ~
Critical Economics ~ Post-Modernism and the Critique of Modernity ~
Marx and the 21st Century ~ Debating the End of Communism ~
Non-Oppositional Societies ~ Consolation, Complicity and Passivity
Today ~ Who Still Waits For A Revolution? ~ C. Castoriadis and the
Project of Autonomy ~ French Thinking and Alternatives for Thought ~
Eastern Europe and the Enrollment to the School of Capitalism ~ China
and the Logic of Growth ~ Crises of Culture ~ Left and Right:
Political Spectrums and Pluralism Re-Discussed ~ Art as an Exchange
Value ~ Originality and Complacency ~ Literatures and Authors ~ Heroes
and Heroines in Electronic Literature ~ Fiction and the
Fictionalization of the Contemporary World ~ Film and the Persisting
Hunger for Heroic Imagination ~ The Illusory Charity and Imagined
forms of Contemporary Humanisms ~ The Growing Social Irrelevance of
Philosophy ~ Replacement of the Logic of Becoming by the Logic of
Earning ~ How Do We Look Back at Tradition? ~ Just Wars or Unjust
Thinking? ~ The Myth of Cosmopolitanism ~ Facing the Self ~
Communication, Media and Simulacrum ~ Science, Pragmatics and
Vocation: Who Pays What We Can’t Sell? ~ Is There Still a Postmodern
or Any Other Kind of Condition? ~ Post-Marxist Way of Looking at Facts
~ The School of Suspicion and Evaluative Thinking ~ Feminist Readings
of Our Contemporary World ~ Post-Colonialism and the Refurbished
Other(s) ~ Theory and Power ~ Queer Theory and Living After the Sexual
Revolution ~ Subaltern Theory

For more information see full details of the conference at:

You can apply on-line by completing the Application Form on the
conference website or by sending a 300 words abstract together with
the details of contact and affiliation until 5th of October 2015 at
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The German Studies Call for Papers List
Editor: Sean Franzel
Assistant Editor:  Olaf Schmidt
Sponsored by the University of Missouri
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