[URBANTH-L] CFP: Roads Less Travelled: The Culture of Shared Air, Marine, and Land Mobility

Angela Jancius jancius at ohio.edu
Fri Nov 30 09:16:09 EST 2007


Roads less travelled: The culture of shared air, marine, and land mobility 

A series of important contributions to the international and interdisciplinary study of mobility over the past decade have shown the centrality of automobility in Western societies and cultures. Automobility stands as an icon of individualized freedom of movement, late modern lifestyle, reliance on transportation technology for daily living, as well as the advent and downward-spiralling of pollution, (sub)urbanization, and consumerism. The study of automobility also stands as an exception to the generalized paucity of knowledge on the cultures of other practices of mobility. In contrast, little do we know, for example, about the sociological, media-ecological, and anthropological significance of non-individual (hence, shared) land, air, and marine mobility. Acquiring additional knowledge about these forms of mobility seems necessary if we wish to comprehend the cultural meaningfulness of alternatives to the patently unsustainable dominant medium of transportation of the day, 
 the car.

As fuel prices rise, as petrol becomes less easily available worldwide, and as the reflexive feeling of citizen responsibility for sustainable mobility grows, it behoves scholars to understand the symbolic significance of car-less lifestyles and countercultures of immobility. 

The proposed book will collect 12 original ethnographic studies written from a wide variety of social scientific fields and interdisciplinary social sciences. Submissions of proposals for papers dealing with the culture of marine mobility, air mobility, shared land mobility, and immobility are invited.

Ideal proposals for ethnographic studies would look at the role played by the mentioned modes of mobility in the everyday life of individuals living in precise geographical contexts. Essays would focus on the logic, experience, and practice of alternative mobility and its shaping of the senses of space, time, identity, and community. 

Essay topics would include, but are not limited to, ferry-boat transportation, the culture of year-round sailboat travellers, the mobility options and movement practices of remote island communities, the experience of regional, national, and international airline travel, the practice of bush pilot air travel, train and subway commuting, urban bus transit, long-range coach travel, and also the experiences and lifestyle of immobile individuals--those who wish to "maroon" themselves within the confines of a unique space.

The deadline for proposals is March 1, 2008. Proposals should consist of 200 word abstracts emailed to the editor, Phillip Vannini: phillip.vannini at royalroads.ca Expressions of interest, preliminary inquiries, and requests for further information are welcomed at any time. Preliminary interest in the project from an international publisher of academic titles has already been expressed. 

Phillip Vannini, PhD
Assistant Professor
School of Communication and Culture
2005 Sooke Road
Royal Roads University
Victoria BC V9B 5Y2
Phone: (250) 391-2600 ext. 4477 (no voice mail)
Fax: (250) 391-2694


EASA Media Anthropology Network

For further information please contact:
Dr John Postill
Sheffield Hallam University, UK
jpostill at usa.net

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