[MGSA-L] Fwd: Call for Papers/Special Issue
np255 at columbia.edu
Fri Sep 26 06:14:58 PDT 2014
*The /International Journal of Media and Cultural Politics/ (MCP)
*'Studies in Cultural Memory'*
Guest-edited by Eleftheria Rania Kosmidou (University of Salford) and
Christos Dermentzopoulos (UOI)
31 March 2015 deadline for submission of proposals (300 words)
(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
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 essay?
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 <mailto:kosmidourania at gmail.com> and
cdermen at uoi.gr <mailto:cdermen at uoi.gr>**on or before 30^th 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.
Rania Kosmidou and Christos Dermentzopoulos
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