Marxist Literary Group Conference: Energy, Env., Culture – June 13 – 17

Posted by on Mar 5, 2014
Marxist Literary Group Conference: Energy, Env., Culture – June 13 – 17

The Marxist Literary Group Institute on Culture and Society: The Banff Centre for the Arts—June 13-17, 2014

The Marxist Literary Group Institute on Culture and Society (ICS) invites the submission of papers on topics related to Marxism, critical theory, and Marxist views of literature. Submissions are welcome from all humanities and social scientific perspectives. Full submission details can be found at the end of this call.

Supplementing an ongoing engagement with Marxism, ICS 2014 welcomes submissions on this year’s special topic: “Energy, Environment, Culture” (EEC). This topic aims to facilitate discussion that moves beyond standard disputes over energy politics in Canada in order to develop sophisticated knowledge about the global relations, ecological realities, social reproduction, and community impacts of energy.

From debates on harnessing wind and solar power to the environmental effects of the tar sands, energy and power have a complex and under theorized connection to culture, politics, and society. Energy is understood in economic terms as the name for an input into market activity that can take a variety of forms and which is necessary for steady-state growth. In environmental thought, too, energy serves as a placeholder for a range of activities, practices and objects with inconsistent theoretical and scientific content. In both cases, energy is seen as fundamental to social life, even if the depth of its significance to the operations of society, and its role in implementing and maintaining particular sets of relationships across diverse communities, is poorly understood. What insights can Marxism lend ecology? Further, what insights can a Marxist-Feminist political economy develop in ecological thought? Approaching these problematics from a humanities perspective, we suggest innovative workshop, panel, and paper proposals on any of the following:

Energy and Globalization
– regional economies, energy distribution, and the political climate of international markets
– the transnational and global relationship between eastern, western and northern economies in Canada vis-à-vis Pacific and Southern American partners and cultures
– cultural symptoms of energy and globalization or internationalism
– cultural and environmental interactions in energy intensive regions
– the interregional and provincial flows created by energy infrastructures and cultural development

Energy and Ecology
– updates to the established approach to energetics
– “New Materialisms” and the renewed interest in non-human agency in ecological research
– redirections of familiar environment vs. economy binary
– the diverse materialisms that link economics, energy, and ecology

Ecology and Marxist Feminism
– practical, community- driven knowledges about energy systems and sustainability
– primitive accumulation (as an ongoing process coterminous with capital accumulation), gender, and the environment
– the work of Mariarosa Dalla Costa, Maria Mies and Silvia Federici
– capitalism, gender, and ecology
– social reproduction and/as energy
– the new work on gender and reproduction coming out in the journals Endnotes and Lies

ICS is run in consecutive sessions to encourage a developing conversation and increase potential research outputs and collaboration. Toward this end, participants are strongly encouraged to stay for the entirety of the conference. Significant subsidies will be available to graduate students and the underemployed.

We welcome submissions of papers, panels, pecha kucha presentations, roundtables, reading groups, and more. Please submit proposals of no more than 400 words in length, including title and affiliation, to Panel or roundtable proposals should be introduced by a 100 word rational. If geared towards a specific stream, submissions should indicate which stream it most strongly relates to. Submission received by the 28th of February, 2014 will be given full consideration. All submissions must be received by the 14th of March, 2014.

Please let us know if you would be interested in having childcare arranged.

The Banff Centre is a world-renowned facility supporting the creation and performance of new works of visual art, music, dance, theatre, and writing.

ICS 2014 is sponsored by the Canada Research Chair in Cultural StudiesARIELMediationsReviews in Cultural Theorythe Marxist Literary Group, The University of Alberta (U of A) Faculty of Arts, U of A English and Film Studies, U of A Kule Institute for Advanced Study, Concordia University, St. Francis Xavier, York University, and the Banff Centre.