While the images of war are unfolding on our screens and a war of images is taking place with the invasion of Ukraine, we realize again how important it is to take popular culture seriously. How certain ideas that make war possible, such as militarized masculinity, are being crafted, but also resisted. Luckily, there are also many examples that show the importance of the power of the popular as a tool for resistance to an oppressive order, whether it is the Black Lives Matter street art or collages denouncing feminicide and transphobic violence. Indeed, popular culture should not only be recognized as source of comfort in difficult and confined times. Popular culture is a powerful tool of contestation and emancipation.
PCWP10 was aimed at transcending disciplinary boundaries; PCWP11 asked us to explore new agendas and PCWP12 celebrated the work achieved. After a long break, this conference wishes to pursue on this line and to look for new (a)venues. We will continue to explore films, videogames, fashion, comics (and the list goes on) as a site of power, but also celebrate the emancipatory potential of the popular, look for changes and potentialities, emancipatory dynamics and resistance. At its 13th edition, the conference is for the first time hosted in Germany and wishes therefore to represent the valuable work that has been developed outside of Anglo-Saxons countries. Magdeburg, a city of the former East Germany, one of the oldest cities hosting one of the youngest universities, is an ideal place for (re)thinking the politics of the popular. Together with scholars from various disciplines and countries we will reflect on topics we are passionate about and support each other in the high and lows of the academic life. Indeed, this conference wishes to remain playful and welcoming in the line of the past conferences. It is also a perfect opportunity to get together again after a long break, to continue interrupted discussions and to widen the pop-cultural fan club
Although many of us grew tired of the often distanced, cold and impersonal character of virtual conferencing and are looking forward to being back in presence again, we believe that a hybrid format remains a good way to engage with environmentally friendly forms of exchange. We are also aware that it may not be easy or safe for everyone to travel, whether it is for health, security or financial reasons. Therefore, we welcome participants who cannot travel to Magdeburg to join us online.
Submissions tackling a wide range of themes within PCWP are encouraged. Paper, panels and roundtable proposals on, but not limited to, the following themes are welcome.
- Popular and visual representations of war
- Popular visualization of crisis and pandemic
- Popular culture and populism
- Memory, history and popular culture
- Postcolonial, Feminist, Queer perspectives on popular culture
- Class, race, gender and sexuality in popular culture
- Digitalization, social media and popular culture
A central concern of the conference is to empower researchers across disciplines and to foster dialogues across disciplinary and methodological boundaries. Thus, we aim to offer a supportive and developmental environment for researchers from all career stages, institutional homes, theoretical backgrounds, and methodological orientations.
We look forward to seeing you in Magdeburg
Your PCWP Conference Team
Morgane Desoutter, Daniel Beck & Alexander Spencer