CfP: The Aesthetics of Politics and the Politics of Aesthetics in Contemporary Venezuela

Venue: University of Cambridge, UK
Deadline for abstracts: 30th June 2014
Date: 19-20th September 2014
Keynote: George Yúdice

This two-day conference aims to engender interdisciplinary discussion of the aesthetic manifestations that emerge with, against, or alongside the State apparatus in contemporary Venezuela. The premise for this conference draws on Deleuze and Guattari’s proposition that: ‘Thought as such is already in conformity with a model that it borrows from the State apparatus, and which defines for it goals and paths, conduits, channels, organs, an entire organon’ (1997). This ‘image of thought’ as a mirror of the State apparatus informs the aim to examine the relationship between political engagement and aesthetic manifestations in diverse realms, such as everyday cultural practices, official propaganda, digital technologies, literary production and the visual arts.

We ask: Can attempts to think culture outside of the State apparatus succeed in narrating identities beyond officialised discourse? Are cultural movements that resist the image of the State able to escape state logic through the innovation of artistic technique and theory? What effect does cultural policy have on aesthetic production?

We welcome proposals from a range of fields, including but not limited to, History, Anthropology, Sociology, Cultural Studies, Urban Studies, Architecture, Communication Studies, Visual Cultures, Literary Studies, Political Theory, Social Sciences, Latin American Studies, Cultural Policy, and Development Studies.

Possible lines of inquiry include:

  *   cultural policy and capitalism
  *   national narratives and postmodernity
  *   revolutionary identities
  *   indigenous movements
  *   decolonial aesthetics
  *   alternative literary practices
  *   communicational warfare
  *   cinematic propaganda
  *   socialist branding
  *   migration and exile
  *   social media and digital technologies
  *   urban imaginaries
  *   violence and alienation
  *   marginality and subalternity
  *   Latin American populism
The conference will primarily be held in the medium of English, though proposals in Spanish will be considered.

A 250-word abstract should be submitted to: vzlaconf2014@gmail.com<mailto:vzlaconf2014@gmail.com>
Deadline for abstract submission: June 30th
Please include: author, affiliation, email address, 150-word bio, paper title, abstract.

Organising committee
Venezuela Research Network<http://venezuela-research-network.net/>
Rebecca Jarman (Centre of Latin American Studies, University of Cambridge)
Lisa Blackmore (University of Leeds)
Penélope Plaza (City University)