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Socialism and Hope

SOTS-SPEAK: REGIMES OF LANGUAGE UNDER SOCIALISM

From: Serguei A. Oushakine

[mailto:oushakin@princeton.edu

Conference Program

Sots-Speak: Regimes of Language under Socialism
May 20-22, 2011
219 Aaron Burr Hall
Princeton University
Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures

Friday, May 20

12.30     Welcome Address

12.45 – 2.45         Panel 1:   Linguistic Anatomies

Konstantin Bogdanov [Russian Academy of  Sciences, St. Petersburg] — “Soviet Language Culture in the Light of Ethnolinguistics”
Anastasia Smirnova [Ohio State U] — “Aligning Language to Ideology: A Socio-Semantic Analysis of Communist and Democratic Discourse in Bulgaria”
Calin Morar Vulcu [Babeş-Bolyai University, Cluj] — “From Subject to Object of Description: Classes in Romanian State-Socialist Discourse”

Chair: Olga Hasty [Princeton U]
Discussant: Mirjam Fried [Czech Academy of Sciences]

3.00 – 5.15           Panel 2: Making Things with Words 

Choi Chatterjee [California State U, Los Angeles] — “Lady in Red: Bolshevik Feminism in the American Imagination, 1917-1939”
Samantha Sherry [U of Edinburgh] — “‘Bird Watchers of the World, Unite!’ The Language of Ideology in Soviet Translation”
Jessie Labov [Ohio State U] — “The Puzzle of the Yugoslav Nationalist/ Dissident from Helsinki to Dayton”
Alyssa DeBlasio [Dickinson College] — “Philosophical Rhetoric and Istoriia russkoi filosofii”
Chair: David Bellos [Princeton U]
Discussant: Irena Grudzinska Gross [Princeton U]

5.30 – 6.45    Keynote address: Jochen Hellbeck (Rutgers U), “The Language of Soviet Experience and Its Meanings” 

7.00        Reception    

Saturday, May 21

9.00 – 11.00   Panel 3:   Speaking Stalinese

Carol AnyTrinity College] — “Public and Private Speech Genres in the Soviet Writers’ Union under Stalin”
Ilya Venyavkin [Russian State University for the Humanities] — “Mystical Insight under Socialism: The Language of Political Confessions in the late 1930-s”
Anastasia Ryabchuk [National U of Kyiv Mohyla Academy] — “Parasites, Asocials, and Work-Shy: Discursive Construction of Homelessness and Vagrancy in the USSR”
Chair: Petre Petrov [Princeton U]
Discussant: Jochen Hellbeck [Rutgers U]

11.15 – 1.15  Panel 4:   Figures of Rhetoric

Elena Gapova [Western Michigan U / European Humanities U] — “The Party Solemnly Proclaims: the Present Generation of Soviet People Shall Live in Communism”: The Rhetoric of Utopia in Krushchev Era”
Karen Petrone [U of Kentucky] — “Afghanistan and the New Discourse of War in the Late Soviet Era”
Yulia Minkova [Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State] — “Our Man in Chile, or Victor Jara’s Posthumous Life in Soviet Media and Popular Culture”
Chair: Ellen Chances [Princeton U]
Discussant: Eliot Borenstein [New York U]

Lunch

2.30 – 4.45    Panel 5:   On the Literary Front

Maria Kisel [Lawrence U] — “Satirical and Philosophical Dimensions of Sots-speak in Andrei Platonov’s Fiction”
Natalia Skradol [Hebrew U / Ben Gurion University of the Negev] — “The Evolution of the Soviet Bestiary: Satirical Fables from Bednyi to Mikhalkov”
Eva Cermanova [U of Aberdeen] — “The Diktat of Language: Bureaucratic Paranoia in Havel’s Memorandum”
Baktyul Aliev [McGill U] — “Visuality in V. Narbikova’s Okolo ekolo”
Chair: Emily Van Buskirk [Rutgers U]
Discussant: Helena Goscilo (Ohio State U)

5.00 – 6.15    Media Presentation: Vitaly Komar, “Word and Image: The Duality of Sots-Art”

6.30     Dinner [Prospect House]

Sunday, May 22

9.00 – 11.15   Panel 6: Practices of Language

Jonathan Larson [U of Iowa] — “Sentimental Kritika: Hazardous Dialectics and Deictics in Socialist Criticism”
James RobertsonNew York U] — “Speaking Titoism: Non-Alignment and the Language Regime of Yugoslav Socialism”
Suzanne Cohen [Temple U] — “In and Out of Frame: The Soviet Training as Sots-Speak”
Julia Lerner and Claudia Zbenovich [Ben Gurion University of the Negev / Hadassah College of Jerusalem] —  “Talk and Dress: Adapting the Therapeutic Paradigm to Post-Soviet Speak”
Chair: Margaret Beissinger [Princeton U]
Discussant: Anna Katsnelson [Princeton U]

11.30 – 1.30    Panel 7: Discursive Remnants

Maria Rives [Yale U] — “Authoritative Discourse in Post-Authoritarian Russia”
Lara Ryazanova-Clarke [U of Edinburgh] — “Stalinism as an Auteur Project: Meta Sots-Speak in Contemporary Russian Public Discourse”
Gasan Gusejnov [Moscow State U] — “On the Vitality of Artificial, or Stalin’s Rhetoric Revisited”
Chair: Rossen Djagalov [Yale U]
Discussant: Caryl Emerson [Princeton U]

The Kremlinaires, the best in Soviet swing: http://www.kremlinaires.com/

—END—

‘I believe in the afterlife.

It starts tomorrow,

When I go to work’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Human Herbs’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2h7tUq0HjIk (live)

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

All that is Solid for Glenn Rikowski: https://rikowski.wordpress.com

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

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Rikowski Point: http://rikowskipoint.blogspot.com

Alternative Culture

ALTERNATIVE CULTURE NOW: THE POLITICS OF CULTURE AT THE PRESENT CONJUNCTURE

 

Call for Proposals:

‘Alternative Culture Now: The Politics of Culture at the Present Conjuncture’
Conference and Event
Budapest, Hungary
April 8-10, 2010

Proposal Deadline: January 25, 2010

How do things stand with respect to the fate of the alternative? Branded and normativized, incorporated into a whole ensemble of mainstream discourses, and no longer the threat it once posed to capitalist and communist states alike, the political and social force of the alternative seems to have faded away. And yet the dream of the alternative continues to inspire political and social movements, artists, theorists, and all kinds of creative practices. How might we begin to situate and think alternativity as a global phenomenon at this precise conjuncture in world history? What is alternative about culture today? And what might or can it become?

The alternative, of course, has always been phraseable in the singular and the plural. On the one hand, it is a phenomenon locked into local configurations, a multi-polar and non-totalizable practice of myriad deviation. Here, its ambit can be that of a family drama or workplace, a national concatenation, or the homogenizing logic of a dominant cultural medium or genre. The dreams it holds in reserve are vitally minor: the fissuring of a regime with a joke or dissidence, the freedom mobilized in small, almost imperceptible defections or reversals. The production of the alternative is in this sense the aggregate, spontaneous effort of innumerable cultural agents to resist every species of stasis and capture, every grammar and vernacular, every gestural hierarchy and total system.

At the same time, this molecular vision of the alternative, of a plurality of fissions and margins, has always been accompanied by attempts to think what it is in the tendency of a moment which suppresses cultural possibilities on a global level. This is a dream of a communication or inter-mediation between margins, a system of deviances which comprehensively address the conditions which negatively hypostatize the life of the virtual. Global patriarchy, violent state expansionisms, the inhibiting logics of capital, and the globalization of the English language can be envisioned as transnational, systematized normativities that threaten cultural specificity or possibility in a way that is never exhausted by its expression on the register of the local. Is there, in this sense, only one alternative: an alternative to which there is no alternative? This notion of a single alternative-a universal difference necessary to shelter the future lives of difference–immediately sets into motion its own paradoxical dialectics of alternativity, itself appearing to erase the thing it promises. How do we escape this vortex, or at least make its impasses productive?

Is one alternative more important than another? Can alternatives be exhausted or rendered obsolete? What kind of method could we develop to test the valences of alternatives? Can or should alternative culture polemically charge the space of its own marginality, or would this degenerate into an infinite sectarianism?

We understand “alternative culture” to include diverse forms of cultural expression and activity, which are connected by their shared goal of creating just, humane, and equitable human relations by means of their opposition to existing cultural, social, and political forms.

This conference encourages contributions from scholars, educators, artists, cultural workers, policy makers, journalists, and others involved in alternative culture and international cultural policies. We are especially interested in contributions addressing alternative culture in Central/Eastern Europe and countries/regions of the former Soviet Union.

Areas of inquiry for submissions may include, but are not limited to, the following general topics in relation to the politics of alternative culture today:

Aesthetics – Collectivity – post-Communist Culture – Creativity – Cultural Studies – Eastern Europe – Geography -Globalization – Higher Education – Media – Memory/Nostalgia – Music – New Media – ex-Socialist History – ex-Soviet Urban Spaces – Visual Culture

The “Alternative Culture Now: The Politics of Culture at the Present Conjuncture” conference will take place at the OSA Archivum in Budapest, Hungary, April 8-10, 2010. It is organized and sponsored by the International Alternative Culture Center, with the support of the Department of Sociology and Social Anthropology (Central European University) and the Canada Research Chair in Cultural Studies (University of Alberta). The conference format will be diverse, including paper presentations, panels, round-table exchanges, artistic performances, and exhibitions. We encourage individual and collaborative paper and panel proposals from across the disciplines and from artists and community members.

Paper Submissions should include: (1) contact information; (2) a 300-500 word abstract; and (3) a one page curriculum vitae or a brief bio.

Panel Proposals should include: (1) a cover sheet with contact information for chair and each panelist; (2) a one-page rationale explaining the relevance of the panel to the theme of the conference; (3) a 300 word abstract for each proposed paper; and (4) a one page curriculum vitae for each presenter.

Please submit individual paper proposals or full panel proposals via e-mail attachment by January 25, 2010 to 
alternativeculturenow@gmail.com with the subject line “Alternative Culture Now.” Attachments should be in .doc or .rtf formats. Submissions should be one document (i.e. include all required information in one attached document).

Website: http://www.alternativeculture.org

Conference Organizing Team: Sarah Blacker (University of Alberta, Canada), Jessie Labov (Ohio State, USA), Andrew Pendakis (University of Bonn, Germany), Justin Sully (McMaster University, Canada), Imre Szeman (University of Alberta, Canada), Maria Whiteman (University of Alberta, Canada), and Olga Zaslavskaya (OSA, Hungary)

Sarah Blacker
Department of English and Film Studies
3-5 Humanities Centre
University of Alberta
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
T6G 2E5

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

The Flow of Ideas: http://www.flowideas.co.uk