Author Archives: Larisa

Registration to the XLV RSACS International conference is open

We are glad to announce “Immigration and American Culture”  as the theme of the XLV International conference of the Russian Society for American Culture Studies at Journalism Department of Lomonosov Moscow State Universityin the hope that it will allow looking in more detail at the changing cultural landscape of the USA due to historical waves of immigration on the one hand, and at the complex influence of the present-day immigration policies on American culture, on the other.

The dates of the conference will be December 4-7, 2019.

Planned sections:

  • – Journalism,
  • – American Culture of the 17-19th Centuries, with a Round Table Discussion on Bicentenary of Herman Melville

Round Table: Herman Melville’s Bicentenary (01.08.1819 – 28.09.1891)

Coordinators: Louisa P. Bashmakova, Prof. Emerita, KubSU, Krasnodar, Russia (888lpb@gmail.com), Prof. Andrew Wiget, Lomonosov MSU, and Prof. Emeritus, New Mexico State University, USA (andrew.wiget@gmail.com).

Melville’s contribution to the cultural and literary heritage of America and the world constitutes an immeasurable legacy.  Themes for papers and conversations may vary from biographical issues to historical and theoretical arguments, literary interpretations, or the critical reception or artistic transformation of the writer’s works in the USA and abroad. Presentations of teaching Melville to students are especially welcome.   

  • – Contemporary Literature and Culture, with a Round Table Discussion on American Drama
  • – Ethnic Aspects,
  • – Gender Studies,
  •  Fantastic in the Arts,
  •  Canadian perspectives, 
  • – Geography of the US and Spatial Aspects of American Culture  

Coordinator: Ruslan Dokhov, MSU,  Geography Department

Topics for discussion:

  • US cities: spatial structure and dynamics.
  • Geography of migrations in the US: internal and external flows. Geography of stayers.
  • Ethnic and confessional geography of the US.
  • Political geography of the US: electoral mosaics and regional patterns.
  • Economic geography, the geography of transportation and energy.
  • US regions, regional identity, locality at the age of globalism.


 A traditional Round Table discussion: Imprints – Image of America and Image of Russia will also be held.

Registration form

Annual Conference of the Gesellschaft für Fantastikforschung: Das Romantisch-Fantastische – The Romantic Fantastic

September 18th–23rd, 2019 at the Free University of Berlin, Cinepoetics – Center for Advanced Film Studies and Department of Film Studies

Romanticism again and again! In autumn 1979, Michael Ende’s novel The Neverending Story was published in the Federal Republic of Germany. Even to Ende’s contemporaries, Bastian’s journey to Fantastica and back seemed to be the beginning of a revitalization of romantic longings and ideas within popular culture. Almost at the same time, US-American cinema discovers the genre of fantasy film. The motif of Campbell’s hero’s journey, a world that needs healing and the interconnectedness of all things becomes a constitutive trait of these films’ poetics. On the one hand, the corresponding novels and films emerged in answer to the uncertainty of a bipolar world – fear of the atomic bomb and nuclear fallout as ultima ratio of the Cold War – and the nascent awareness of environmental vulnerability. On the other hand, they, like their famous predecessors, have been accused of a penchant for escapism and ill-conceived inwardness.

A similar area of tension can be observed in the fantasic today. Once again, the potential of recent speculative fiction as well as its critique seem to be indicating a core collection of romantic notions. Like at the end of the 18th century, romanticism and the fantastic provide a corrective to the frigid, mercantile rationality of a world that no longer knows any secrets. In light of contemporary political, economic and ecological distortions, speculative fiction is looking for ways of rethinking the world – and man’s place in it. And once again, the fantastic is accused of turning its back on hard facts and necessities to take refuge in sentimentalized other-worlds.

Based on these findings, the conference will pursue two goals: First, it intends to take a critical look into the relationship of romantic ideas, poetics, and images to possible genealogies of the fantastic. What is to be gained by locating fantastic works in a romantic tradition? Does this dialogue facilitate a deeper understanding of the continued effect of romanticism or poetics of the fantastic? Second, the resilience of speculative fiction’s inherent capability for critique is to be scrutinized in reference to its romantic origins. Can the relation between fantastic worlds and everyday reality be conceptualized in a way that forgoes the dichotomy of critical realism and ahistorical escapism? Would it be possible to illustrate, using its stories, images, and audiovisual presentations, the untenability of accusations which label the fantastic as being politically reactionary and aesthetically conservative – or do the subversive moments in its poetics remain marginal?

All contributions are welcome which examine the complex relationship between romanticism and specific implementations/ of the fantastic, its types and genres, protagonists, and media, on a theoretical, historical, and analytical level.
Possible Topics:

  • • Universal poetry and worldmaking (atmosphere, synesthesia, science and art as modes of knowing and experiencing)
  • • Media of the supernatural: romantic concepts of media and their influence on the mediality of the fantastic
  • • Romantic conceptions of history and the faculty of historic imagination as driving forces of the fantastic (recourse to the Middle Ages)
  • • Fairy tales, myths, and legends as genres and modalities of fantastic narratives
  • • Traditions of gothic fiction in modern fantasy
  • • Updating gothic topoi in contemporary horror cinema (for instance ghosts, living dolls and possessed clerics in the Conjuring-franchise, or witches and religious mania in folk horror)
  • • The beautiful and the sublime, the gruesome and the grotesque as models for poetics of affect in horror and fantasy
  • • Romantic imagery and its influence on visual forms of the fantastic (art, comic, film, series, computer game etc.)
  • • Forms, practices and theories of the fantastic in the era of romanticism (ghost and witch lore, demonology, phantasmagoria etc.)
  • • Soundscapes which establish a quasi-natural stance beyond the human (as in Dark Ambient or Drone Metal)
  • • Poetics of fantasy as modes of magical thinking
  • • Romantic poetics and the becoming-fantastic of the ordinary
  • • Forms of romantic love in fantasy
  • • Fantasy as a form of political romanticism

As usual at GFF conferences, there will be an open track for all lectures which are not directly related to the topic of the conference. Hence, we are open to further proposals.

The GFF offers two scholarships of 250 euros each to students to help cover their travel expenses to the conference. Please indicate if you would like to be considered when submitting your abstract.

Deadline for abstracts and short biographies (max. 2000 characters): January 1st-February 28th, 2019. 
Submission of constituted panels (3-4 speakers) is encouraged.
Submission form and further information available at: www.gff2019.cinepoetics.fu-berlin.de.

For additional inquiries, mail to: gff2019@fu-berlin.de.

Conference Board: Jun.-Prof. Dr. Jan-Hendrik Bakels, Regina Brückner, Jun.-Prof. Dr. Matthias Grotkopp, Dr. Tobias Haupts, Dr. Daniel Illger, Cilli Pogodda, Prof. Dr. Michael Wedel

Program of the XLIV International RSACS Conference “America and Europe: Forms of Cultural Interaction” December 5-8, 2018

December 5, Wednesday, 6 pm  Room 103

Plenary Opening Session 

  1. Professor Yassen Zassoursky

RSACS President, President of the Journalism Department,

Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russia

American Language: A Project of the 18th Century by Jonathan Edwards 

 

Section 1: Journalism

Coordinator Professor Yassen Zassoursky

 (Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russia)

December 6, Thursday, 10 am – 12 am  room 217

 

1.Nikolai Zykov

Journalism Department,

Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russia

American-European Cultural Links in the Programs of the Voice of America

 

The topic of cultural relations has been and remains one of the main subject in the programs of the oldest international radio station in the United States, rising throughout the history of the work of the broadcaster. It is about the deep interrelation of cultures of the former colony and the countries of Europe, contacts of cultural figures and ordinary citizens. Such contacts contribute to the establishment of mutual understanding in the international arena. These programs have long been remembered by listeners.

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XLIV International Conference Schedule

DaySectionRoom
December 5, Wednesday
10.00-17.30Registration217
18. 00 - 19.00Opening Plenary session103
19.00 - 20.00Tea and Pirozhki217
December 6, Thursday
10.00-12.00Section 1. Journalism
Round Table on Midterm Elections
217
13.00-14.00Excursion to Maxim Gorky museum
16.00-19.00Section 3. Contemporary American Culture217
16.30-18.30Section 2. American Culture of the 17-19 Centuries333
December 7, Friday
10.00 – 12.00Round Table Discussion
Imprints: Image of America and Image of Russia
103
12.00 - 15.00Lunch break
15.00 - 18.00Section 6. Fantastic in the Arts217
December 8, Friday
10.00 – 13.30Section 4. Ethnic Aspects of American Culture103
13.30 - 14.00Lunch break
14.00 - 18.00Section 5. Gender Aspects of American Culture103
18.00 - 19.30Closing session103
20.00 - 21.00Farewell dinnerCafe Paul Bakery

Call for Submissions: Terra Foundation for American Art International Essay Prize

The Terra Foundation for American Art International Essay Prize recognizes excellent scholarship by a non-U.S. citizen working in the field of historical American art. Manuscripts should advance the understanding of American art by demonstrating new findings and original perspectives. The prize winner will be given the opportunity to work toward publication in American Art, the peer-reviewed journal copublished by the Smithsonian American Art Museum and the University of Chicago Press. The winner will receive a $1,000 cash award and a travel stipend of up to $3,500 to give a presentation in Washington, D.C., and meet with museum staff and research fellows.

Eligibility Requirements: Authors must be non-U.S. citizens who have achieved doctoral candidacy or completed a doctoral degree (or the equivalent), and have not previously had a manuscript accepted for publication in American Art. Essays may focus on any aspect of historical (pre-1980) American art and visual culture; however, architecture and film studies are not eligible. Essays may be submitted in any language; abstracts must be submitted in English.

Submissions for the 2019 prize must be sent to TerraEssayPrize@si.edu by January 15, 2019. For information on the prize, available in Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, and Spanish, please consult AmericanArt.si.edu/research/awards/terra.

Doctoral Grants GSNAS Freie Universität Berlin

Since the deadline for applications is November 30, 2018, we would like to remind you that the Graduate School of North American Studies (GSNAS) at Freie Universität Berlin will award

six three-year doctoral grants (1,350 EUR/month) and additional doc­toral memberships (starting date: October 1, 2019) to students pursuing a doctoral project related to North America in Cultural Studies, History, Liter­ary Studies, Economics, Political Science or Sociology.

Further details on our application platform and the deadline can be found on the attached posters and our website at gsnas.fu-berlin.de/en

CfA_GSNAS_2019

Journalism Section at the 43rd RSACS Conference

Modern media culture is comprehensive, responding to the basic mass audience need in entertainment. The entertainment component is actively being introduced into the different spheres of media space, transforming traditional media formats. American journalism provides a lot of materials for analyzing various manifestations of comic forms. We could mention the musical and humorous program “Saturday Night Live” on the NBC channel, parodying political elite and received a TV Emmy award this year.

In the “Journalism” section 7 reports were made (out of 9 applications). Several reports were devoted to the genre peculiarity of the embodiment of the comic. Karine Chobanyan turned to the satiric rubric “RedicuList” of the information program “Anderson Cooper 360” on the CNN channel and defined it as an “informational feuilleton”. Svetlana Kanashina settled on the genre nature of popular Internet memes. She stressed the syncretic: textual and graphic components that outplaying the cliches of the American mass consciousness.

In the center of the next two reports was the figure of the USA President Donald Trump. Elena Pavlova emphasized the following important point: Trump appearance on the political arena marked a departure from the discourse of political correctness prevailing over the past decades. Annihilating irony and sarcasm were played a special role in departing from this established practice of public internal political polemics. In the Valery Terin message there was a thought that through Twitter Trump proposed a new type of electronic communication, different from the linear sequence of typographic culture.

The Nikolai Zykov report filled the usually vacant niche. It was dedicated to the “The Voice of America” broadcasting, combining literary and political humor.

Finally, two more reports were devoted to the print press. It is noteworthy that the appeal to the press was brought to the historical context. Yekaterina Zagvozdkina spoke about the ironic coverage in the late 1950s and early 1960s press the image of the “broken generation”, who had denied traditions and social norms.

In Yuliya Balashova report were determined the main stages of the American almanacs evolution, with their satirical variety accentuation. American almanacs developed mainly within the framework of popular and mass culture, invariably retaining their calendar prototype. Such diverse presidents of the United States, like Franklin Roosevelt, and then Richard Nixon, addressed the satirical almanac-calendar form, for the purpose of political PR.

Galina Lapshina summed up a certain result, drawing attention to the points of convergence of American and Russian culture.

Yulia Balashova