Cultural Analysis Summer Academy (CASA): Acting & Spectating
July 2-5, 2004
The CASA meeting invites a discussion of the relationship between academia and society, between theory and practice, and of the policies that shape the conditions of research, teaching, and the role of academia within society. The meeting invites views and perspectives from academia, society and social movements.
Since the early 1990s, a number of international developments have made it increasingly obvious that citizens' opinions, their critical thinking and application of knowledge, have not been taken into account by those who make political decisions. Global opposition against the recent war in Iraq is the newest instance to prove the presence of a world-wide discontent. Simultaneously, we are witnessing, on an economic and social level, the imposition of a system that is based on an exploitation of the many by the few, one that removes by way of privatization citizens' influence on, and responsibility for, public life. Common to all these developments is the feature that those in power seek to "objectify" people by depriving them of the very agency that a democratic system strives to implement. At the same time, these overall changes on international and national levels show once again that agency is a problematic: people find themselves confronted with an unresolved tension between what they see/think and what they do/want to do. After all, decisions are not only susceptible to mistakes, but necessarily always have to be made from within a particular perspective, be it that of a white Western Christian male or a black Eastern Hindu female. Thus, any alternative to the present situation leads us eventually to choose between two wrongs: for in righting a wrong, we might end up doing a new wrong - how, then, should and do we act? In the quest for alternatives to a system that favors the few over the many, this "dilemma of agency" has become ever visible. How can we remain agents and act on individual and collective levels in today's culturally diverse world and pressurized societies?
The Cultural Analysis Summer Academy seeks to provide a space in which these issues can be discussed from different viewpoints:
How does the privatization of education systems affect the conditions of research and teaching? On what philosophies is it based and what are the consequences of its implementation?
What is the place of academics in today's society? Which responsibilities can or should they assume? How can the communication between academia, social movements and society be improved?
Under the headline of the concepts Acting - Spectating CASA seeks contributions that address the aforementioned "dilemma of agency".
CASA is inviting submissions for papers and workshops on the above and related issues to be discussed at the CASA meeting which will take place from July 2-5, 2004, in Amsterdam. The meeting will be organized in a workshop format. Contributions can thus come in the form of workshops, papers, presentations or other projects. For the sake of coherence, contributions should engage with the meeting's topics and can integrate several key texts, which will be put up on the website as a reader.
Please submit a one-page synopsis of your intended contribution, accompanied by some biographical information, by May 24, 2004, to email@example.com , or the address below. Contributions in languages other than English are not excluded per se, and will be taken into cosideration individually, depending on the meeting's expected attendants.
For more details, please see our webpage, or contact the address below.
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