[MGSA-L] Call for Papers, Journal of Media and Cultural Politics - Special Issue 'Studies in Cultural Memory' - Dermentzopoulos / Kosmidou

June Samaras june.samaras at gmail.com
Wed Sep 24 13:28:44 PDT 2014

*The International Journal of Media and Cultural Politics (MCP) Special
Issue: *

*'Studies in Cultural Memory'*

Guest-edited by Eleftheria Rania Kosmidou and Christos Dermentzopoulos

31 March 2015 deadline for submission of proposals.

(For accepted proposals the deadline for completed 6,000-7,000 words essays
is 30 June 2015).

 Call for Papers

 In 1925 Maurice Halbwachs placed memory in a social context when he argued
that collective memories are socially constructed while his research and
study have set the boundaries of the notion of collective memory ever
since. Jan Assmann disagrees with this notion and constructed cultural
memory as an analytical and methodological category, a category
exceptionally closely related to politics. In his 1988 essay ‘Collective
Memory and Cultural Identity’, translated in 1995 by John Czaplicka, Assmann
separated collective memory (which he calls communicative memory) and its
social basis from cultural memory and its cultural basis. Cultural memory
differs from collective memory in two ways: first, it focuses on cultural
characteristics that ‘communicative’ or ‘everyday memory’ lack. Second, it
is different from history, which does not have the characteristics of
memory. Assmann’s focus on the first distinction, namely the distinction
between collective/communicative memory and cultural memory, has its
grounds on the fact that communicative/collective memory is characterized
by its proximity to the everyday. When we move from the everyday, we have
cultural memory. For Assmann, cultural memory is based on fateful events of
the past, on fixed points which he calls ‘figures of memory’ whose ‘memory
is maintained through cultural formation (texts, rites, monuments) and
institutional communication (recitation, practice, observance)’ (Assman
1995: 129). Cultural memory’s function is to unify and stabilize a common
identity that spans many generations and it is not easy to change, as
opposed to collective memory that has a three-generation cycle. Hence the
representation of history through institutions and the arts becomes a
matter of *praxis*, of transformation of the solidified narrative for the
sake of society’s stability.

Since Assmann’s seminal essay, the interrelationship between culture and
memory has come forth as an essential and central issue of
interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary research, involving fields such as
history, literary studies, film and media studies, digital humanities,
memory studies, archaeology, sociology, cultural studies, trauma studies,
philosophy as well as neurosciences, psychology and psychiatry. The
importance of the notion of cultural memory is not only documented by the
recent growth, since the late 1980s, of publications, but also by the more
recent trend to integrate different research methods of this emerging
field, that assert to the need to bring focus to this debate and to examine
the theoretical and methodological challenges of this field. With this
special issue of Studies in Cultural Memory we wish to offer a space for
scholarly debate and dialogue on  cultural memory, in a European context
and internationally (mainly the USA) that assumes a distinctly cultural and
social perspective.

This special issue welcomes research across disciplines in the humanities
and social sciences and seeks to provide a critical forum for dialogue and
debate on the theoretical, methodological, and empirical issues central to
an understanding of cultural memory today. Papers should address the ways
in which cultural memory is formed, used, presented and represented,
appropriated, and changed while being committed to the broad understanding
of cultural memory as the interplay of past and present in socio-cultural
and historical contexts. In particular, the volume encourages papers that
examine questions of cultural memory, its manipulation and its
understanding as a methodological and epistemological tool as well as
papers that investigate the relation between cultural memory and new media
(including the Internet, social media etc) as well as old media
(photography, cinema, TV etc).

Topics might address, but are not limited to, the following:

1)      What can scholars, theorists and artists learn through Assmann’s

2)      What role does cultural memory play today?

3)      What is being done to critique it?

4)   How is cultural memory embedded/constructed in film, television,
literature, comic books and graphic novels, visual art, and theatre?

5)      Can cultural memory be manipulated?

6)      What issues does post-memory raise?

7)      How are memories used to mobilize groups and form identities?

8)      What is the role of social media and the Internet?

9)      How is nostalgia related to cultural memory? What is the role of
nostalgia in the formation of cultural memory?

10)  What is the role of location in the construction of cultural memory?

MCP invites interested contributors to send (6,000-7,000 word) essays incl.
references, short commentaries (2,500-3,000), and book reviews
(1,000-2,500) on Cultural Memory to the Guest Editors at the following
addresses: kosmidourania at gmail.com and cdermen at uoi.gr on or before 30th
June 2015. Contributors should also include their affiliation, contact
details and a short biographical note of approximately 200 words.

*The International Journal of Media and Cultural Politics (Intellect)*


*Abstracting and Indexing*


Please feel free to forward to others who may be interested in contributing.

 Best regards,

Rania Kosmidou and Christos Dermentzopoulos

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