Activism in 2016: Art, Land and Technology



Invited speaker: Dr Jenny Hughes, University of Manchester 

This one-day conference sponsored by the Humanities Research Centre will explore contemporary forms of political activism and their relationship to the arts. We will explore the world of social media, not only as a means to inform and organise real-life demonstrations, but also as a discrete arena of discussion and activism. We will analyse the practice of demonstration and occupation from a multidisciplinary approach, including sociological, geographical and political analysis. We will also investigate the aesthetic and political value of performance, drawing connections between arts practice and political protest. Activism is a very wide topic and offers many opportunities to think about the role of groups in our society and in the space surrounding us, the way we stand for our political beliefs and how we create, disseminate and express values. This conference will maintain an interdisciplinary perspective, hoping to attract staff and students from various academic fields, including Geography, Theatre Studies, Sociology, Politics and International Relations to name but a few, as well as creative professionals.

Research questions include, but are not limited to:

  • What challenges and opportunities does technology present to extra-parliamentary political activity?
  • What is the role of traditional forms of activism in the contemporary political landscape?
  • What is the connection between territory and activism?
  • How do contemporary artists engage with politics?
  • What are the connections between protest and artistic performance?

We welcome proposals for 15 minutes presentations. Please send a 250-word abstract and a 150-word biography to by January 17th 2016.

We also welcome contributions from artists and creative professionals of all disciplines, including:

  • Provocations on the topics listed above (max. 15 minutes).
  • Visual artworks to be exhibited in the foyer of Millburn House, University of Warwick, on the day of the conference.
  • Performances (max. 15 minutes).

Please send a 250-word proposal (including technical details and photographs in the case of artworks and performances) and a 150-word biography to by January 17th 2016.

Categories: Committing Sociology

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