The 10th International Conference of Baltic Literary Scholars in 2014 will be focused on cultural change and cultural diversity within a comparative approach. The conference will take place in Riga, Latvia on September 28-30, 2014.
Conference of Baltic Literary Scholars has established itself as a continuing tradition in the Baltic academic space since 1995. During this time, many new insights have been developed by bringing together Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian scholars and discussing topics both current for the whole literary space and distinctive for each country. The emphasis on theoretical approach has proved itself to be a productive one as studies in the Baltic memory show. In the 2014 conference, the organizers have decided to develop the previous tradition further, by turning attention to the Baltic experience as an example not only for theoretical reflections on topics such as memory, identity and cultural translation, but for the comparative approach as well.
The primary interest of the conference is focused on the phenomenon of cultural diversity, on the growing awareness that culture has existed and exists in plural. The main focus of the conference will be to develop a broader and more general view on cultural change that challenges the tendency of singularizing culture and social reality.
Over the last decades, the Baltic example has been mentioned as a vibrant site of both merging and conflicting cultural identities. Reflecting upon the Baltic experience prompts asking what lies behind the repeatedly non-problematically used denominations: "national culture", "national society", "national literature", or even further: "modern art", "Western modernity", etc. To what extent can we observe the Baltic example as a unique situation or does it rather mirror larger patterns of cultural change as well as awareness of those changes and their capacity to produce new meanings?
Answers to these questions could be sought by developing the so called border thinking and by looking for diverse cultural representation forms, be it the relationship between ones own and the unfamiliar (different), the dominant and the subdued, the central and the peripheral, the global and the local, the collective and the individual, the official and the unofficial, the accepted and the rejected, etc.
Processes occurring in socio-cultural border areas negotiations, inclusion/exclusion, usurpation, borrowing, interpreting and resulting in mixed or hybrid cultural forms are not exclusively characteristic for the Baltics, however the Baltics provide a specific example of the growing sense of an in-betweenness that can serve as a starting point for further discussions on the role literature and art plays in responding to global and postmodern challenges.
We are inviting proposals for paper presentations, focusing on these topics not only in literary representations, but in a broader context of cultural production as well.
In order to develop a broader view on cultural diversity, the organizers encourage submissions that approach this theme from the comparative perspective by juxtaposing or comparing the Baltic experience with other European regions thus creating new insights into exploring travelling ideas in European intellectual space.
Interdisciplinary perspectives are particularly welcome since all these topics in themselves stretch across several disciplines: history, literary studies, political sciences, folkloristics, ethnology, gender/queer studies, anthropology, sociology.
Please submit your 300-word abstracts by November 15th, 2013.
In addition prepare the following info:
a short biographical note
Your participation in the conference will be confirmed by December 16th 2013.
Papers should be delivered in English.
Until May 30th 2014
Early-bird registration fee 60 EUR
Student fee 40 EUR
From May 31st to August 31 2014
Regular participation fee 80 EUR
Student fee 50 EUR
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