[URBANTH-L]CFP: Enclosure, Emancipatory Communication and the Global City

Angela Jancius jancius at ohio.edu
Tue Nov 21 18:37:23 EST 2006



* *

*     Hosted by the School of Communication, Simon Fraser University  *

*    October 25-28, 2007  *


The field of culture and communication manifests struggles between contradictory tendencies.  On the one hand, pressures from capital and state sometimes promote various forms of /enclosure/ -- the private appropriation, suppression or marginalization of socially-produced public expression.  Enclosure comes in many guises: the commodification of information; concentration and hyper-commercialism in media industries; the corporatization of universities; restrictive "intellectual property" regimes; or market authoritarianism as a mode of governance.

On the other hand, progressive forces, from artists and academics to broad social movements, are not only resisting  such enclosure, but developing practices and policies that prefigure/ emancipation/ -- new ways of re-organizing culture and communication democratically.  These include struggles over alternative media, state cultural policies, communication rights, reform of media and cultural institutions, audience empowerment, urban public space, and much else.

At the nexus of changing national cultures and policies, of transnational migrations and markets, of media flows and audiences, of consumption and surveillance, the /global city/ is emerging as a key site for such contestation.

The Union for Democratic Communications invites proposals, from artists, activists and media scholars, for presentations, roundtables, workshops and panels that examine and critique the relationship between forces of enclosure and emancipation, especially in the context of the global city (broadly defined).  Other topics relevant to democratic communication are also very welcome.

The keynote address will be delivered by Mike Davis, author of /City of Quartz/, /Ecology of Fear/ and, most recently, /Planet of Slums/.  Other featured speakers, including Dan Schiller, Nick Dyer-Witheford and Dee Dee Halleck (UDC Smythe Award recipient), will be complemented by presenters on a wide range of topics, video and other media presentations, and interaction with local activist and artistic groups concerned with democratizing communication.  The conference coincides with Vancouver's annual Media Democracy Day, featuring an Independent Media Fair at the city's architecturally acclaimed public library.

For the first time, the UDC conference will be held in downtown Vancouver, Canada, hosted by Simon Fraser University's School of Communication; co-sponsors include the SFU Institute for the Humanities and the British Columbia Libraries Association.  Vancouver is about 120 miles north of Seattle, and offers direct flight connections to many cities in Canada and the US.  Vancouver is surely a 'global city': Canada's "gateway to the Pacific" and host to the upcoming 2010 Winter Olympics, perched amidst spectacular mountain and coastal scenery and recreation, but also home of Canada's poorest urban district and historically an incubator of influential social movements.

Proposals are invited for both individual papers and panel or workshop sessions.  Individual paper proposals should include a title, a brief (maximum 250 word) abstract of the presentation, and contact information including name, title, institution, mailing address, telephone, fax and email address.  Panel session proposals should include titles, contact information, and a brief (maximum 250 word) abstract for /each/ panel member; they should also include a short (maximum 100 word) description of the overall panel theme and contact information for the panel chair.  Proposals from artists for individual presentations or panel sessions should also include samples of the work to be presented.  Please identify any audio-visual needs in your proposal as we may not be able to accommodate later requests.

All proposals should be submitted by email to udc2007 at sfu.ca in the form of a Word or PDF attachment. Hard copies may also be sent to:

UDC 2007 Conference
School of Communication
Simon Fraser University
Burnaby BC V5A 1S6

Conference presenters are expected to pay registration fees and should be current members of the Union for Democratic Communication (please visit www.udc.org <http://www.udc.org> to join the UDC).

/Limited conference travel funding assistance for student and low-income presenters will be available.  Please send a request with your proposal./

Please visit www.sfu.ca/conferences/udc2007 <http://www.sfu.ca/udc2007> (estimated launch date: Nov. 20) for more details about the conference.

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