Cultural Studies Association Annual Conference

CFP: 2015 Cultural Studies Association (CSA) Conference Call for Proposals
Thirteenth Annual Meeting of the Cultural Studies Association (US)

The Cultural Studies Association (CSA) invites proposals from its current and future members for participation in its thirteenth annual meeting in the Riverside Convention Center, Riverside, Greater Los Angeles Area, California.

Proposals from all areas and on all topics of relevance to cultural studies are welcome, and are not limited to proposals that critically and creatively engage this year's highlighted problematic.

This year’s theme, “Another University is Possible: Praxis, Activism, and the Promise of Critical Pedagogy,” plays on the World Social Forum’s motto, “Another World is Possible.” It expresses a commitment to the intellectual and political project of a radically different university. Moving beyond policy and pundit-driven discussions of the state and the future of higher education, we seek proposals that highlight socially-engaged scholarship and activism, and projects that explore the transformative possibilities embedded in the present. What forms and formations of research, pedagogy, praxis, and activism have emerged from the struggles being waged in, around, through, and in spite of institutions of higher education? What roles can culture, theory, imagination, and technology play in these struggles? Taking up cultural studies' historical commitment to the interrogation of the relations among knowledge, power, and social transformation, the 2015 Cultural Studies Association conference seeks to provide an insurgent intellectual space for imagining, enacting, and mapping new forms of knowledge production and scholarly communication and community.

We are particularly interested in work that links the global neo-liberal conjuncture of higher education to local acts of collective resistance and action, and back again. We want to know more about how students, staff, faculty, administrators, and community partners are responding to the current social, legal, economic, financial, political, cultural, institutional, and intellectual challenges and possibilities: student debt as a means of financing higher education institutions; court cases that attack the history and practice of affirmative action; the rise in union activity on campuses; the re-entrenchment of the "humanities" as a division under "crisis"; the emergent emphasis on MOOCs and other online forms of education that extend the already dominant casualization of academic labor; the emergence of public and digital pedagogy and scholarship; the ambivalent politics of academic freedom; the reduction of education to vocational training and degrees to commodified credentials; the role of universities in reproducing or amplifying (rather than reducing) the social inequalities of contemporary capitalism; and the university as a site of capital accumulation and dispossession, among many other trends and tendencies.

As at previous CSA conferences, this year's conference aims to provide multiple spaces for the cross-pollination of art, activism, pedagogy, design, and research by bringing together participants from a variety of positions inside and outside the university. While we welcome traditional academic papers and panels, we strongly encourage contributions that experiment with alternative formats and challenge the traditional disciplinary formations and exclusionary conceptions and practices of the academic. We are particularly interested in proposals for sessions designed to document and advance existing forms of collective action or catalyze new collaborations. We also encourage submissions from individuals working beyond the boundaries of the university: artists, activists, independent scholars, professionals, community organizers, and community college educators.

Proposals from all areas and on all topics of relevance to cultural studies are welcome, and are not limited to proposals that critically and creatively engage this year's highlighted problematic. We welcome proposals from a range of disciplinary and topical positions, including literature, history, sociology, geography, politics, anthropology, communication(s), popular culture, cultural theory, queer studies, critical race studies, feminist studies, post-colonial studies, legal studies, science studies, media and film studies, material cultural studies, platform studies, visual art and performance studies.