International Conference in Science and Humanities at the Mudra Institute of Communication (MICA), Ahmedabad, India
Jointly being organised by Kogakuin University (Tokyo Urban Tech) and the University of Limerick, Ireland
Postmodernism, Globalisation and the Media
To be held at MICA, Ahmedabad, India between March 5th to 7th, 2005.
How does one view contemporary times? There are many discourses about the different ways of looking at the world. Ideological frameworks remain the key. However, what is imperative is to engage in discourses that attempts to bring out some sort of a perspective about the world. At a larger level, these might be discourses which synthesize sciences as a whole. One of the dominant frameworks in operation today is postmodernism.
As far as the concept of post-modernism is concerned, there are different perspectives to the same. Moreover the term itself has been used to a wide range of economic social and cultural phenomena. Philosophically, postmodernism may be seen to demonstrate a suspicion to all embracing systems of thought thanks to what Lyotard called ‘les grans recits’ or meta-narratives of western thought. Lyotard’s work may be linked to more general strains of post – structuralist thinking (Hill, 1998) but as mentioned earlier these may be seen to include a suspicion of ‘totalising theories’; an anti foundationalism that rejects all claims to ‘absolute’ or ‘universal’ foundations of knowledge. Postmodernism also stresses on the heterogeneity and fragmented character of social and cultural ‘realities’. It also questions any attempts of any unified account of them.
Sociologically speaking, postmodernism has also been used to identify to a new economic and social order. Here too ideas such as ‘post industrialism’ or post modernity crop up. The reference here is to a period that follows modernity. To be noted is that the periodisation itself is not always agreed upon. Apart from that there are criticisms to it. The debates in globalisation are an indicator in this regard. For example, the argument of a globalised world is also carried repeatedly to enforce the inevitability of globalisation. However as Tabb states, this idea of inevitability is in itself an ideological construct and it is the product of political forces acting through the powerful lobbies of government and media. This inevitability represents a new phase and hence as Meiksins Wood (1998) says there is an emphasis on cultural, ideological and psychological shifts, the dissolution of old certainties, the disintegration of all political foundations, the fluidity of “identities” and the “de-centred subject”. It has to be added here that while there has been a retreat from all grand narratives, “this historic rupture, however, did not usher in the post-modern epoch” (Meiksins Wood, 1998).
Science studies are also crucial. As Ziauddin Sardar states, its importance lies solely as a vehicle for surveying, criticising and transforming our knowledge practices more generally. Further more, it aims to introduce a discourse of values in the practice and operation of science and open the practice of science to democratic accountability; especially its decision-making processes and power structures.
About the MICA conference
Even though the terrain of this conference is vast, the basic purpose of this seminar is to engage in a dialogue to touch upon all sides to this phenomenon. The purpose is to bring in scholars from science and humanities for an interface. The other need for this conference is in its context. There is a need to get into such inquiries primarily because of its potential to bring in a range of scholars for a dialogue. The idea of holding this conference is also to forge stronger academic links with the participant universities for joint research.
The first International conference on Postmodernism was held at the Kogakuin University, Tokyo, Japan in March 2004. The University of Limerick (Ireland) was also an active participant in the conference. It was at this conference that it was proposed that the follow up conference be held in India. This proposal was accepted by the Mudra Institute of Communication (MICA), Ahmedabad, India. It is now proposed that the conference be held between March 5th -7th, 2005 at MICA.
The Tokyo conference was an overview of postmodernism with respect to science and humanities. The MICA conference would be an extension to the same with a focus on the arts and the media in the context of globalization. Papers are also invited from related areas. Given the global scenario today and the interplay of postmodernism in academic discourses, it is necessary to delve deeper into the realm of social sciences. The underlying themes of the India conference would be:
An enquiry into postmodernism in the realm of science and humanities in the context of globalisation.
How the various dimensions of arts, cinema and the media are linked to the process and,
It is also proposed that there be a one day focus on the south Asia region; as the conference is being held in this region.
Research Papers are invited from scholars, academic and doctoral students. Even though there is a specific focus with the keywords being postmodernism, globalisation and media, papers with related focus in the realm of social sciences are also invited. For instance the list could include the areas of:
Modern European Languages
Philosophy and Art
All papers will be refereed. Please send abstracts and subsequently the papers to the following address which in turn will be send to the area chairs. The contact address is as follows:
Ahmedabad, India 380058
Papers can also be emailed to:
The last date for submission of abstracts is January 15th, 2005. Full papers have to be submitted by February 15th, 2005.
All international participants would have to register for the conference.
The registration fee for the conference is 500 US dollars.
For Scholars from the Developing countries, the registration is 250 US dollars.
The registration fee for doctoral and other students is 150 US dollars. Evidence of students’ status is requested.
The registration fee covers boarding, lodging and transport on the days of the conference. Apart from all meals, this also includes a trip to a local site of historical importance.
For those who register before December 31st, 2004, there would be a 10% less fee.
The registration fees can be paid by bankers’ draft/cheque in the name of “Mudra Institute of Communication” payable at Ahmedabad, India. Assistance regarding this would be accorded.
An edited book from the papers presented by the scholars would be the outcome of this conference.
Speakers for the Inaugural Session and the First Session (as of now):
Prof. Philip Scheslinger, University of Sterling, England
Prof. Atul Tandan, Director, MICA
Dr. Somnath Zutshi, Director, Seagull Arts and Media Centre, Calcutta, India
Prof Brian Coates, Department of Languages and Culture Studies, University of Limerick
Dr. Sato / Prof. Setsuko, Department of Languages, Kogakuin University
Prof. Nandita Haksar, Former Professor of Law, Bangalore Law School, India
Area Chairs (as on 2nd October 2004)
Architecture: Prof. Tomoaki Nakashima, Kogakuin University
Literature: Dr. Eugene O’Brien, Mary Immaculate College, Ireland
Feminism: Kim Arnold
Physics: Prof. Takayoshi Komura, Kogakuin University
Politics: Dr. Matthew Canon, University of Limerick
Post modern Music: Prof. Mikael Fernstorm, University of Limerick
Robotics: Prof. Ishii, Kogakuin University
Sociology: Dr. Eoin Devereux, Professor of Sociology, University of Limerick
Artificial Intelligence: Prof. Eiji Yodogawa, Japanese Space agency
Philosophy and Art: Kieran Cashell
Send comments and questions to H-Net
Webstaff. H-Net reproduces announcements that have been submitted to us as a
free service to the academic community. If you are interested in an announcement
listed here, please contact the organizers or patrons directly. Though we strive
to provide accurate information, H-Net cannot accept responsibility for the text of
announcements appearing in this service. (Administration)