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Shanghai

Shanghai

ANALYZING URBAN NETWORKS

CALL FOR PAPERS

Social Network Analysis (SNA), a quantitative structuralist methodology largely developed by sociologists in the 1970s that has grown into a sizeable international and inter-disciplinary research field, has – following the work of Alderson and Beckfield (2004) – begun to attract interest among those engaged in research on both world cities and urban networks per se (e.g. Alderson and Beckfield, 2007, 2010, 2012; Green, 2007; Taylor, 2006; Mould & Joel, 2010). In addition, two textbooks have been recently published to bring some of the more commonly used SNA software packages to the undergraduate urban studies classroom (Giuffre, 2013; Neal, 2013). Papers are invited which utilise a social network perspective to seek to better understand the relations, connections, networks, and co-production within and between the world’s cities. Papers could report empirical findings, theoretical and/or methodological advances, including critiques of either, specific SNA methods and results, or the inherent structuralism of SNA as a tool for researching the urban.

Please send abstracts of no more than 200 words by February 14th to r.g.smith@swan.ac.uk

Annual International Conference 2014:http://www.rgs.org/WhatsOn/ConferencesAndSeminars/Annual+International+Conference/Annual+international+conference.htm
*******************************************
Dr Richard G. Smith, PhD (Bristol)
Co-Director of the Centre for Urban Theory, Department of Geography, College of Science, Swansea University, Singleton Park, Swansea SA2 8PP, UK Tel. +44(0)1792 602558 Fax +44(0)1792 295955
E-mail: r.g.smith@Swansea.ac.uk
Web: http://www.swansea.ac.uk/staff/science/geography/r.g.smith/
Skype: dr.richard.g.smith

A few recent publications:

Richard G. Smith (2013) The ordinary city trap snaps back. Environment and Planning A doi:10.1068/a46284

Richard G. Smith (2013) The Ordinary City Trap. Environment and Planning A doi:10.1068/a45516

Richard G. Smith (2013) Beyond the Global City Concept and the Myth of ‘Command and Control’. International Journal of Urban and Regional Research  doi:10.1111/1468-2427.12024 [ Featured in IJURR Latest News: http://www.ijurr.org/details/news/5639821/Focus-on-political-economy-in-the-January-2014-issue-___-Let-the-debate-begin___.html ]

 

**END**

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Stagnant’ at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YkP_Mi5ideo  

‘Cheerful Sin’ – a song by Victor Rikowski: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIbX5aKUjO8

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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

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

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

Online Publications at: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

Fear of a Blank Planet

Fear of a Blank Planet

DISTRIBUTED INTIMACIES

Banff Research in Culture 2014

Summer Research Residency

Program Dates: May 26, 2014 – June 13, 2014

Application Deadline: December 2, 2013

Application and Program Info: http://www.banffcentre.ca/programs/program.aspx?id=1394

Faculty: Lauren BerlantFrancisco CamachoWendy Hui Kyong Chun

Intimacy describes our relations with those people, places, creatures, and things to which we feel the deepest, most powerful or most abiding connections. The multiple ways in which we experience intimacy today draw attention to the complex patterning of closeness and distance that has always unconsciously structured our cultural, social and political practices. There have long been forms of distant intimacy—staying ‘in touch’ via the drama of epistolary exchanges or through sound waves emanating from a telephone—but recent technological developments, increased travel, the expansion of migration and immigration, and instantaneous virtual communication are fundamentally reshaping our understanding and experience of the proximity of bodies, sentiments, and ideas. Social networking and the democratization of modes of communication and media have had a profound significance for the experience of community, collectivity, and affinities; at every level, from the family to the nation, our sense of belonging is being redefined in ways that affect our daily experience but remain difficult to comprehend. 

One can see evidence of the new distribution of intimacy everywhere: in the immediacy of a rock concert, one witnesses people en masse recording the spectacle for friends not present; on public transit around the world, passengers make connections to different elsewheres via newspapers, music, text messages, and mobile phone calls; and in political protests (as evidenced by the Arab Spring and recent dissent in Turkey), which have been reshaped by the use of technologies that are, for a new generation, part and parcel of everyday life. Intimacies of friendship, collectivity, love and belonging are being substantially redefined through the devices in our hands and a global infrastructure that supports instantaneous sharing.

Banff Research in Culture (BRiC) 2014 will investigate the cultural, social, and political repercussions of “distributed intimacies”—the processes and outcomes of new forms of mediation that have reshaped how we relate to one another, imagine ourselves as parts of groups, and constitute communities. Given the fractal character of our subjectivity—the ways in which we are necessarily the outcome of networks of intersubjective relations, experiences, and concepts—how are our intimacies constituted by the ways we live? What are the modes and machines by which intimacies are distributed, and what determines their intensities? How does the global distribution of goods, ideas and affects across oceans and continents shape forms of intimacy, belonging and community? What forms of intimacy feel inescapable? What impedes intimacy from flourishing? Are local scenes and forms of collectivity (e.g., non-traditional families, polyamory, activist movements, alternative forms of political practice) enabled by new forms of distributed intimacies? In what ways do contemporary cultural and art practices participate in the distribution of intimacy? To what extent are our intimacies segmented, remote-controlled, and apportioned, and can we redefine these distributions without lapsing into a nostalgic primitivism? Finally, what does distributed intimacy imply for social change as well as for the politics of shaping one’s own self in relation to others?

We look forward to receiving compelling and original project proposals from thinkers and creators working on a wide range of projects.

Imre Szeman

Canada Research Chair in Cultural Studies

Killam Annual Professor

Professor of English, Film Studies and Sociology

University of Alberta

www.crcculturalstudies.ca

 

**END**

 

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Stagnant’ at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YkP_Mi5ideo (new remix, and new video, 2012)  

‘Cheerful Sin’ – a song by Victor Rikowski: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIbX5aKUjO8

 

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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

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

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

Online Publications at: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

Information Society

CRITIQUE, DEMOCARCY, AND PHILOSOPHY IN THE 21st CENTURY INFORMATION SOCIETY

Call for Contributions/Abstracts

Critique, Democracy, and Philosophy in 21st Century information Society. Towards Critical Theories of Social Media

The Fourth ICTs and Society-Conference
UppsalaUniversity

May 2nd-4th, 2012

http://www.icts-and-society.net/events/uppsala2012/
http://fuchs.uti.at/wp-content/CfA.pdf

A unique event for networking, presentation of critical ideas, critical engagement, and featuring leading critical scholars in the area of Critical Internet Studies and Critical Studies of Media & Society.

Confirmed Keynote Speakers:

* Andrew Feenberg (Simon Fraser University, Canada): Great Refusal and Long March: How to Use Critical Theory to Think About the Internet.
* Charles Ess (Aarhus University, Denmark): Digital Media Ethics and Philosophy in 21st Century Information Society
* Christian Christensen (Uppsala University, Sweden): WikiLeaks: Mainstreaming Transparency?
* Christian Fuchs (Uppsala University, Sweden): Critique of the Political Economy of Social Media and Informational Capitalism
* Graham Murdock (Loughborough University, UK): The Peculiarities of Media Commodities: Consumer Labour, Ideology, and Exploitation Today
* Gunilla Bradley (KTH, Sweden): Social Informatics and Ethics: Towards a Good Information Society
* Mark Andrejevic (University of Queensland, Australia): Social Media: Surveillance and Exploitation 2.0
* Nick Dyer-Witheford (University of Western Ontario, Canada): Cybermarxism Today: Cycles and Circuits of Struggle in 21st Century Capitalism
* Peter Dahlgren (Lund University, Sweden): Social Media and the Civic Sphere: Perspectives for the Future of Democracy
* Tobias Olsson (Jönköping University, Sweden): Social Media Participation and the Organized Production of Net Culture
* Trebor Scholz (New School, USA): The Internet as Playground and Factory
* Ursula Huws (University of Hertfordshire, UK): Virtual Work and the Cybertariat in Contemporary Capitalism
* Vincent Mosco (Queen’s University, Canada): Marx is Back, but Will Knowledge Workers of the World Unite? On the Critical Study of Labour, Media, and Communication Today
* Wolfgang Hofkirchner (Vienna University of Technology, Austria): Potentials and Risks for Creating a Global Sustainable Information Society

Conference Topic

This conference provides a forum for the discussion of how to critically study social media and their relevance for critique, democracy, politics and philosophy in 21st century information society.

We are living in times of global capitalist crisis. In this situation, we are witnessing a return of critique in the form of a surging interest in critical theories (such as the critical political economy of Karl Marx, critical theory, etc) and revolutions, rebellions, and political movements against neoliberalism that are reactions to the commodification and instrumentalization of everything. On the one hand there are overdrawn claims that social media (Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, mobile Internet, etc) have caused rebellions and uproars in countries like Tunisia and Egypt, which brings up the question to which extent these are claims are ideological or not. On the other hand, the question arises what actual role social media play in contemporary capitalism, power structures, crisis, rebellions, uproar, revolutions, the strengthening of the commons, and the potential creation of participatory democracy. The commodification of everything has resulted also in a commodification of the communication commons, including Internet communication that is today largely commercial in character. The question is how to make sense of a world in crisis, how a different future can look like, and how we can create Internet commons and a commons-based participatory democracy.

This conference deals with the question of what kind of society and what kind of Internet are desirable, what steps need to be taken for advancing a good Internet in a sustainable information society, how capitalism, power structures and social media are connected, what the main problems, risks, opportunities and challenges are for the current and future development of Internet and society, how struggles are connected to social media, what the role, problems and opportunities of social media, web 2.0, the mobile Internet and the ubiquitous Internet are today and in the future, what current developments of the Internet and society tell us about potential futures, how an alternative Internet can look like, and how a participatory, commons-based Internet and a co-operative, participatory, sustainable information society can be achieved.

Questions to be addressed include, but are not limited to:

* What does it mean to study the Internet, social media and society in a critical way? What are Critical Internet Studies and Critical Theories of Social Media? What does it mean to study the media and communication critically?
* What is the role of the Internet and social media in contemporary capitalism?
* How do power structures, exploitation, domination, class, digital labour, commodification of the communication commons, ideology, and audience/user commodification, and surveillance shape the Internet and social media?
* How do these phenomena shape concrete platforms such as Google, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc?
* How does contemporary capitalism look like? What is the role of the Internet and social media in contemporary capitalism?
* In what society do we live? What is the actual role of information, ICTs, and knowledge in contemporary society? Are concepts like network society, information society, informational capitalism, etc adequate characterizations of contemporary society or overdrawn claims? What are the fundamental characteristics of contemporary society and which concept(s) should be used for describing this society?
* What is digital labour and how do exploitation and surplus value generation work on the Internet? Which forms of exploitation and class structuration do we find on the Internet, how do they work, what are their commonalities and differences? How does the relation between toil and play change in a digital world? How do classes and class struggles look like in 21st century informational capitalism?
* What are ideologies of the Internet, web 2.0, and social media? How can they be deconstructed and criticized? How does ideology critique work as an empirical method and theory that is applied to the Internet and social media?
* Which philosophies, ethics and which philosophers are needed today in order to understand the Internet, democracy and society and to achieve a global sustainable information society and a participatory Internet? What are perspectives for political philosophy and social theory in 21st century information society?
* What contradictions, conflicts, ambiguities, and dialectics shape 21st century information society and social media?
* What theories are needed for studying the Internet, social media, web 2.0, or certain platforms or applications in a critical way?
* What is the role of counter-power, resistance, struggles, social movements, civil society, rebellions, uproars, riots, revolutions, and political transformations in 21st century information society and how (if at all) are they connected to social media?
* What is the actual role of social media and social networking sites in political revolutions, uproars, and rebellions (like the recent Maghrebian revolutions, contemporary protests in Europe and the world, the Occupy movement, etc)?
* What can an alternative Internet look like and what are the conditions for creating such an Internet? What are the opportunities and challenges posed by projects like Wikipedia, WikiLeaks, Diaspora, IndyMedia, Democracy Now! and other alternative media? What is a commons-based Internet and how can it be created?
* What is the role of ethics, politics, and activism for Critical Internet Studies?
* What is the role of critical theories in studying the information society, social media, and the Internet?
* What is a critical methodology in Critical Internet Studies? Which research methods are needed on how need existing research methods be adapted for studying the Internet and society in a critical way?
* What are ethical problems, opportunities, and challenges of social media? How are they framed by the complex contradictions of contemporary capitalism?
* Who and what and where are we in 21st century capitalist information society? How have different identities changed in the global world, what conflicts relate to it, and what is the role of class and class identity in informational capitalism?
* What is democracy? What is the future of democracy in the global information society? And what is or should democracy be today? What is the relation of democracy and social media? How do the public sphere and the colonization of the public sphere look like today? What is the role of social media in the public sphere and its colonization?

The conference is the fourth in the ICTs and Society-Conference Series (http://www.icts-and-society.net). The ICTs and Society-Network is an international forum that networks scholars in the interdisciplinary areas of Critical Internet Studies, digital media studies, Internet & society studies and information society studies. The ICTs and Society Conference series was in previous years organized at the University of Salzburg (Austria, June 2008), the University of Trento (Italy, June 2009) and the Internet Interdisciplinary Institute (Spain, July 2010).

About Uppsala, Uppsala University and the Department of Informatics and Media:

Uppsala University (http://www.uu.se) was founded in 1477 and is the oldest university in the Nordic countries. Every year 45 000 undergraduate and graduate students enroll for classes. Uppsala is an academic and students-oriented city with old academic tradition. The Department of Informatics and Media (http://www.im.uu.se) is a newly established institution at Uppsala University. Its research focuses on understanding and designing digital media in the information society. Among its educational programmes is a new master’s programme in Digital Media & Society that will start in August 2012.

Early May is a particularly nice time to come and visit Uppsala. It is the time of spring festivities and the awakening of nature and the city. The end of April has since medieval times been a time of celebrating the spring, especially in Eastern Sweden. Uppsala and especially Uppsala’s students have participated in this tradition, especially on the last of April (“sista april”, Valborg, http://www.valborgiuppsala.se/en) that features various celebrations and special activities all over the town.

Time Plan:
February 29th, 2012, 17:00, Central European Time (CET): Abstract Submission Deadline
Until March 11th, 2012: information about acceptance or rejection of presentations
March 30th, 2012, 17:00, CET: registration deadline
May 2nd-4th, 2012: Conference, Ekonomikum, University of Uppsala, Kyrkogårdsgatan 10, Uppsala

Abstract Submission:
a) For submission, please first register your profile on the ICTs and Society platform:
http://www.icts-and-society.net/register/
b) Please download the abstract submission form:
http://fuchs.uti.at/wp-content/uploads/ASF.doc ,
insert your presentation title, contact data, and an abstract of 200-500 words. The abstract should clearly set out goals, questions, the way taken for answering the questions, main results, the importance of the topic for critically studying the information society and/or social media and for the conference.
Please submit your abstract until February 29th, 2012, per e-mail to Marisol Sandoval: marisol.sandoval@uti.at

Organizer:
Uppsala University, Department of Informatics and Media, Kyrkogårdsgatan 10, Box 513, 751 20 Uppsala, Sweden http://www.im.uu.se
Contact for academic questions in respect to the conference:
Prof. Christian Fuchs, christian.fuchs@im.uu.se , Tel +46 18 471 1019
Contact for questions concerning conference organization and administration:
Marisol Sandoval, marisol.sandoval@uti.at

Co-organizers:
* ICTs and Society Network
* European Sociological Association – Research Network 18: Sociology of Communications and Media Research
* tripleC – Open Access Journal for a Global Sustainable Information Society
* Unified Theory of Information Research Group (UTI), Austria
* Department of Information and Media Studies, Aarhus University, Denmark
* Institute for Design & Assessment of Technology, Vienna University of Technology, Austria
* Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, Sweden

Conference Board and Organization Committee:
Charles Ess, Aarhus University
Christian Christensen, Uppsala University
Christian Fuchs, Uppsala University + UTI Research Group
Göran Svensson, Uppsala University
Marisol Sandoval, Unified Theory of Information Research Group
Sebastian Sevignani, Unified Theory of Information Research Group
Sylvain Firer-Blaess, Uppsala University
Thomas Allmer, Unified Theory of Information (UTI) Research Group
Tobias Olsson, Jönköping University
Verena Kreilinger, Unified Theory of Information Research Group
Wolfgang Hofkirchner, Vienna University of Technology + UTI Research Group

Welcome to Uppsala in Spring 2012!

***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)

‘Maximum levels of boredom

Disguised as maximum fun’

Cold Hands & Quarter Moon, ‘Stagnant’ at: http://www.myspace.com/coldhandsmusic (recording) and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLjxeHvvhJQ (live, at the Belle View pub, Bangor, north Wales)  

‘Cheerful Sin’ – a new song by Victor Rikowski: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIbX5aKUjO8

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

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

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

Online Publications at: http://www.flowideas.co.uk/?page=pub&sub=Online%20Publications%20Glenn%20Rikowski

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

Sociology

NEW COMMUNICATIONS AND DEMONSTRATIONS

How are demonstrations represented in the mass media?  How do activists use new media to organise and communicate protest? What benefits do Social Media provide? 

The BSA Media Study Group and the University of Leicester are proud to announce a symposium called ‘New Communications and Demonstrations’. This event will showcase a plethora of valuable research in this field and invite discussions and comments on this topic.

A full programme for the day and online registration are now available at: http://www.britsoc.co.uk/specialisms/Media.htm

 

‘New Communications and Demonstrations’

Wednesday 13th July 2011, 10.30am – 4.30pm

Attenborough Building, University of Leicester

Directions: http://www2.le.ac.uk/maps

 

Symposium fees (Places are limited, so sign up early!)

£25 BSA members and Postgraduates

£35 for non-members

 

For more details about the study group please visit: http://www.britsoc.co.uk/specialisms/Media.htm

Please direct any administrative enquiries to the BSA office at events@britsoc.org.uk and any academic enquires to Dr. Julian Matthews jpm29@leicester.ac.uk  

 

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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

Archive

BEYOND 2.0: NEW MODELS OF INFORMATION

A Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) in Sussex Event

Thursday 19th May, 4-6pm – University of Brighton

As the web matures and Web 2.0 and social media services become embedded in our everyday lives the information world is entering a new phase. The vast quantities of data being generated by these new services, the challenges posed to traditional publishers and the plethora of new devices such as iPads and smart phones will change the work of information professionals over the coming decade.

This talk, by Dr Martin De Saulles of the University of Brighton, will outline some of the challenges as well as the opportunities for those who work with information. It will be followed by an opportunity for questions and discussion. 

Venue: Watts Building, University of Brighton, Lewes Rd, Brighton BN2 4GJ

Cost: £5 for CILIP members, £10 for non-members

Light refreshments will be available.

To book your place, contact Audrey Marshall by email: a.m.marshall@brighton.ac.uk

—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

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

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

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

Mute

NEW BLOG ON SOCIAL NETWORK UNIONISM

Social Network Unionism Blog: http://snuproject.wordpress.com/

About the SNU Project

Social Network Unionism Project is not only about the rise in the recent developments in P2P technology, the phenomenon called Web 2.0, and conceptualising the transformatory impact of these technical developments on unions at national and international levels, and labour movement in general. Besides defining the concept of SNU, by looking closely to the existing practices within and without established unions and labour organisations, the project also aims at promoting a new type of working class organisation that takes online and real world social, peer to peer networking principles into the core of its existence.

The idea is based on the premise that the development in the mentioned communication and media technology since 2004 onwards has created new organisational capacities for networks. There are already astonishing experiments taking place in the field, from whose successes and failures we can learn and upon them we can build new models; not only to grow in members and fight back stronger but also to form wider alliances and start building new social, economic and political norms and cultures bottom up.

Based on these insights our objective is to explore further on the potential of SNU concept, in terms of reaching out the unorganisible, activating organised rank and file, making direct democracy a reality, and bridging as much transformatory social forces as possible through this blog. We hope to such concept and effort would contribute to the global process of union revitalization and may be further to the general emancipation of labour from ‘work’, as feed for the greed for private profit and power.

Posted here by Glenn Rikowski

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

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

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

Glenn Rikowski on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/glenn.rikowski

Volumizer: http://glennrikowski.blogspot.com

We Are the Crisis

SPRINGTIME: THE NEW STUDENT REBELLIONS

Edited by Clare Solomon and Tania Palmieri
OUT NOW in the UK; Published September 2011, USA

Book launch and party on: Thursday 7 April, 2011, 6.30pm – 11pm
At The Venue & Gallery bar @ ULU, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HY
Free entry / All ages / All proceeds to PalestineConnect http://www.palestineconnect.org
Come early for drinks reception
Books available for purchase at discounted price of £7

With talks and readings from:

Clare Solomon, (President of ULU)

Jody McIntyre, (Equality Movement)

Dr Nina Power, (Roehampton)

Jo Casserly, (UCL)

Ashok Kumar, (LSE SU)

Kanja Sesay, (NUS Black Students Officer)

James Meadway, (SOAS)

& more tbc

And open mic, poetry, live graffiti wall, music and projections by: Noel Douglas, (Globalise Resistance), Tyler Perkin, (Havering Sixth  Form College), DJ Steaz, Logic MC, (The Peoples Army & We are Dubist), Zain (Words Apart poetry group)

The autumn and winter of 2010 saw an unprecedented wave of student protests across the UK in response to the coalition government’s savage cuts in state funding for higher education, cuts which formed the basis for an ideological attack on the nature of education itself. Middle-class students, teenagers from diverse backgrounds and older activists took part in marches, teach-ins and occupations, and also creative new forms: flashmobs, YouTube dance-offs, and the literal literary resistance of colourful book blocs.

The protests spread with wildfire speed, mainly organised through the unprecedented use of social media such as facebook and twitter. Web-savvy, media-literate students developed Sukey, the anti-kettling phone app, publicise their demands through online and traditional media outlets and continue to build ever-denser international networks of solidarity.

The winter of discontent now gives rise to the new spirit of rebellion this spring with a broader, stronger resistance to austerity measures. We have already seen the astonishing events in the Arab world, trade union rallies in Wisconsin on a scale not seen in America since the Vietnam protests, direct-action by tax-justice campaigners UK Uncut – and 26 March will see ‘March for the Alternative’ the largest national anti-cuts demonstration yet. SPRINGTIME is both an inspiring chronicle of and companion to this movement: “the formulation of an experience” of a generation.

Rather than considering them a series of isolated incidents, this new book locates the student protests in the movement spreading across the entire western world: ever since the financial crash of 2008 there has been growing social and political turbulence in the heartlands of capital and beyond. From Athens to Rome, San Francisco to London – and the stunning events in Tunisia and Egypt that captured the world’s imagination – students are playing a key role in developing a strong, coherent social and political movement.

*****

CLARE SOLOMON is President of the University of London Union and has been centrally involved in the student protests.

—————————————————————-
ISBN: 978 1 84467 740 5/ $14.95 / £9.99 / Paperback / 296 pages
—————————————————————-
For more information or to buy the book visit: http://www.versobooks.com/books/799-springtime
———————————–
Become a fan of Verso on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Verso-Books-UK/122064538789
And get updates on Twitter too! http://twitter.com/VersoBooksUK

—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

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

MySpace Profile: http://www.myspace.com/glennrikowski

The Ockress: http://www.theockress.com

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

Dissent

VOICES OF DISSENT – INTERFACE

Interface: a journal for and about social movements

Volume Two, Issue Two

Voices of dissent: activists’ engagements in the creation of alternative, autonomous, radical and independent media

Volume two, issue two of Interface, a peer-reviewed e-journal produced and refereed by social movement practitioners and engaged movement researchers, is now out, on the special theme “Voices of dissent: activists’ engagements in the creation of alternative, autonomous, radical and independent media”.

Interface is open-access (free), global and programmatically multilingual. Our overall aim is to “learn from each other’s struggles”: to develop a dialogue between practitioners and researchers, but also between different social movements, intellectual traditions and national contexts.

This new issue also marks the launch of our new website, which we hope will make the site more accessible and support multilingual material and translations in particular. The site is currently at http://interfacejournal.nuim.ie but will be accessible through the existing address of http://www.interfacejournal.net shortly. (The delay is due to the intervention of the IMF and more substantially weather-related problems in Ireland.)

This issue of Interface includes 26 pieces in 4 languages by authors from Austria, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, the Netherlands, Palestine, Russia, South Korea, Sweden, the UK and the US, including:

Theme-related articles:
    • Tina Askanius and Nils Gustafsson, Mainstreaming the alternative: the changing media practices of protest movements
    • Patrick McCurdy, Breaking the spiral of silence: the “media debate” within global justice movements. A case study of Dissent! and the Gleneagles G8 summit
    • Tatiana Bazzichelli, Towards a critique of social networking: practices of networking in grassroots communities from mail art to the case of Anna Adamolo
    • Clemens Apprich, Upload dissident culture: Public Netbase’s intervention into digital and urban space
    • Dongwon Jo, Real-time networked media activism in the 2008 Chotbul protest
    • Brigitte Geiger and Margit Hauser, Medien der neuen Frauenbewegung in Archiv / Archiving feminist grassroots media
    • Margaret Gillan, Class and voice: challenges for grassroots community activists using media in 21st century Ireland Other articles:
    • Philippe Lucas, Patient-centred strategies to counter stigma, oppression and forced incarceration in the CSX and medical cannabis  movements
    • William K Carroll, Crisis, movements, counter-hegemony: in search of the new
    • Raphael Schlembach, Towards a critique of anti-German “communism” Action notes from:
    • Cristina Guimarães Oliveira and Odalisca Moraes, Comunicação: Indicadores históricos e culturais do Pina
    • Lívia Moreira de Alcântara and Elder Gomes Barbosa, Extensão ou comunicação? O audiovisual como um instrumento facilitador da comunicação no assentamento do MST Olga Benário
    • Iyad Burnat, The Bil’in model of wall resistance

A special section is devoted to alternative international labour communications, with contributions from Peter Waterman, Eric Lee and Dave Hollis

Key documents: Chto Delat? A declaration on politics, knowledge and art (Russian and English versions)

Response by Peter Waterman to Colin Barker’s piece on Solidarnosc in issue 2/1, and response from Barker to Waterman

Advance piece for issue 3/1 (repression and social movements): Tomas Mac Sheoin, Policing and repression of anti-globalization protests and movements: a bibliography of English-language material

This issue’s reviews includes the following titles:
    • Clifford Bob, The marketing of rebellion: insurgents, media and international activism
    • John Charlton, Don’t you hear the H-Bomb’s thunder? Youth and politics on Tyneside in the late ‘fifties and early ‘sixties
    • Jo Reger et al (eds), Identity work in social movements
    • Clemencia Rodriguez et al (eds), Making our media: global initiatives towards a democratic public sphere.

A call for papers for volume 3 issue 2 of Interface is now open, on the theme of “Feminism, women’s movements and women in movement” (submissions deadline May 1 2011). We can review and publish articles in Afrikaans, Catalan, Croatian, Danish, Dutch, English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Maltese, Norwegian, Portuguese, Romanian, Russian, Serbian, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish and Zulu.

The website has full details on how to submit articles for this issue.

Volume 3, issue 2 on “Repression and social movements” is due to be published in May 2011.

Interface is always looking for translators to help with our multilingual project and website editors who can help with WordPress. We are also looking for activists or academics interested in helping out, particularly but not only with our African, South Asian, Spanish-speaking Latin American, East and Central European, and Oceania / SE Asian groups. More details on our website.

Please forward this to anyone you think may be interested.

Elizabeth Humphrys
Sydney, Australia
email: lizhumphrys@me.com

Interface: a journal for and about social movements: http://www.interfacejournal.net

Interface is also on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/home.php?sk=group_134658609918257&ap=1

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Archive

LIBRARIES IN THE DIGITAL AGE

The Association of Independent Libraries

Libraries in a Digital Age 

A one-day conference on the problems and opportunities facing libraries in the age of the Internet 

To be held at the Royal Astronomical Society, 

Burlington House, Piccadilly, London W1J 0BQ 

Thursday 14 October 2010 

10.30 a.m. – 4.30 p.m. 

Programme 

10.30 Coffee and Welcome 

10.45 Social networking: just a lot of twittering?  Gwyneth Price

Gwyneth Price is Head of Collection Development Services at the Institute of Education (London) and is particularly interested in information literacy and the use of social networking software in libraries.  Her presentation will focus on some examples of Web 2.0 technologies and how they impact on libraries in the digital age. 

11.30 A plan for the future of our public library service.  Tim Coates 

Tim Coates is an author and was head of Waterstone’s bookshops in its early years. For the last decade he has become widely known for his pursuit of the improvement of the public library service. For his address to the conference on libraries in the digital age Tim has indicated his intention to use this opportunity to make a major statement on the state of libraries in England and what needs to be done for them to survive and fill a role for future generations.

12.15 The Oxford-Google Book Digitization Partnership.  Michael Popham

Michael Popham is Head of the Oxford Digital Library, a core service of the Bodleian Libraries, serving the University of Oxford. Michael has been working in the fields of digitization and electronic text creation for more than two decades, and co-ordinates Oxford’s collaboration with Google Books. The Bodleian Library was one of the first five libraries to began collaboration with the Google Books Library Project (see http://books.google.com/googlebooks/partners.html). This presentation will outline the Partnership’s efforts to digitize the Bodleian’s entire holdings of out-of-copyright C19th material, and the lessons we have learned from this challenging endeavour.

13.00 Lunch

14.00 Merchants of Culture: the publishing industry in the 21st century. Professor John B Thompson 

John B. Thompson is Professor of Sociology at the University of Cambridge and Fellow of Jesus College, Cambridge. His publications include Books in the Digital Age (2005) and Merchants of Culture: The Publishing Business in the Twenty-First Century (2010). The book publishing industry today is facing some of the greatest challenges it has known since Gutenberg. Caught in the pincer of an economic downturn and a digital revolution, everyone involved in the book business – publishers, agents and booksellers – is being forced to rethink what they do. Based on ten years of in-depth research on the publishing industry, Thompson analyses some of the key changes that have transformed the industry in recent years and shows how publishers are seeking to rethink their practices in the face of an uncertain future. 

14.45 Copyright and the Knowledge Commons.  Martyn Everett

Martyn Everett, writer, historian, former librarian and Chairman of Saffron Walden Town Library Society. The internet and digitisation provide the opportunity to create a knowledge and information Commons in which libraries could play a key role.  Yet the combination of new technology, commercialisation, and changes in the nature of ‘copyright’ threaten to constrict and regulate access to information as never before. Which side are you on?

15.30 Tour of the Royal Astronomical Society Library including a short talk about the Library’s digitisation programme by Librarian Peter Hingley. 

16.30 Concluding remarks 

Timings are approximate and the organisers reserve the right to change the programme without notification 

Cost £40 per person including lunch. 

Please make cheques payable to “The Association of Independent Libraries’ and send to: 

The Association of Independent Libraries, c/o The Leeds Library, 18 Commercial Street, Leeds LS1 6AL 

Tel: 0113-245-3071 

enquiries@theleedslibrary.org.uk

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Uncertainty in Higher Education

UNIVERSITIES AS KNOWLEDGE INSTITUTIONS IN THE NETWORKED AGE

CALL FOR PAPERS FOR SPECIAL ISSUE

Universities as Knowledge Institutions in the Networked Age

Guest Editors: PHILIPPE AIGRAIN, JUAN CARLOS DE MARTIN & URS GASSER

The journal Policy Futures in Education (PFIE) – available online at www.wwwords.co.uk/PFIE – will publish a special issue on the impact of information technology and the Internet on universities: to keep and develop their role as knowledge institutions, how should universities reshape in this new environment? Sub-topics, such as open access to scientific literature and distance learning, have an established track of studies and proposals. However, it has not been common so far to aim at an integrated analysis of how universities will and should change to accommodate the changes brought by cyberspace in their specific role of knowledge user, processor, producer and disseminator.

One topic to be addressed is how the process of learning within universities will change because of the Internet and digital devices. For centuries, college student were educated by listening to their professor read aloud selected books taken from the university library (‘lesson’ comes, in fact, from ‘lectio’, Latin for ‘reading session’). Gutenberg changed that by making books cheaper and therefore more amenable to individual ownership and private reading, but the typical university lesson ended up not changing much anyway. Thanks to technology, we are now experiencing, at least potentially, a Renaissance of learning methods: from e-books to podcasts, from virtual worlds classrooms to streaming, from computer-assisted learning to videogames, the avenues of learning have increased dramatically. Are we heading towards purely technology-mediated learning strategies? Is the old Socratic professor-student direct approach completely obsolete? Doesn’t the wider spectrum of approaches offer the opportunity to educate those students who have always been uncomfortable with the traditional approach? What about the impact on lifelong learning?

A second topic is how research will be affected by the Internet. A major potential impact will be on the way research results will be communicated in the future. The scientific paper as a rhetorical device is increasingly under pressure in favour of more flexible, digitally-enabled forms of communication, mostly based on semantic web technologies. How would the decline of the scientific paper affect science? What about the role of search engines in the future of research? Will the Internet enable new forms of evaluation of scientific results? How would that change the centuries-old mechanism of recognition and promotion within the scientific community? Moreover, the transition towards digital knowledge seem to affect trends towards commercialization of knowledge at universities and knowledge institutions, and the impact those trends have on knowledge generation. Additionally, the Internet seem to be increasing the tension between the growing specialization of research activities and the aspiration towards increased interdisciplinarity.

The third topic regards how should universities use cyberspace to best implement their mission with respect to society. In recent years society has been asking universities to do more than simply – albeit crucially – educate students and produce new academic knowledge. The list of new demands include life-long education, open access to scientific papers and educational resources, and encouragement and support for spin-offs and start-ups. But is that it? Of course not. Public education, at all levels, was born with a clear mandate to educate citizens and to increase social mobility, not simply provide students with marketable skills and bookshelves with new scientific journals. Moreover, in our age the increasingly complex problems that we are facing as society, from global warming to water supplies, from the environment to energy issues, from the challenges (and opportunities) presented by bio-genetics and nanotechnology, don’t call for a renewal of the concept of University as Public Institution? In other words, don’t universities – as institutions as well as through their individual researchers – have a duty to engage more frequently in the public sphere, placing their super skills and knowledge at the service of citizens – and their representatives – to allow them to properly deliberate? If so, how? What would be appropriate and what would, instead, constitute a deontological breach of professorial decorum and integrity? If it is indeed important, shouldn’t universities allow/favour internal organizational changes to better implement such social role? How is that social role linked to freedom of research? Is the growing need of universities in many countries to court potential private investors (or governments) affecting it? If so, what could the consequences be for our societies? Doesn’t the Internet offer extraordinary tools to empower the public sphere presence of universities, professors and students, and to help to reduce social and cultural divides?

The special issue builds upon the COMMUNIA 2010 Conference on University and Cyberspace – Reshaping Knowledge Institutions for the Networked Age, held at Turin, 28-30 June 2010.

Submitters can visit the conference site and access material originating from the conference at http://www.communia2010.org

Possible issues relating to the above topics include:

– Digital Natives: how will the characteristics of the new generations of students, faculty and staff shape the future of universities?
– The Spatial Infrastructure: physical and virtual spaces for higher education
– The Use of Digital Technology in the Classroom
– Open Access to Scientific Results (papers, data, software)
– Open Educational Resources
– Educational Videogames
– Digital Devices as Platform for Learning
– Non-formal Education via the Internet
– Digital Divide and Higher Education
– Long-term Knowledge Preservation in a Digital Age
– Academic Production and the Knowledge Commons
– Digital and Physical Social Networks
– Intellectual Property and Academic Production
– Physical and Digital Library
– Semantic Web Technologies Applied to Scientific Results and Educational Resources

Papers should be sent as email attachments: pfie-specialissue@nexa.polito.it

Deadline for submissions: 15 January 2011

All papers submitted will be evaluated using the PFIE’s normal peer review process. Please also see the Journal’s information for authors: www.wwwords.co.uk/pfie/howtocontribute.asp

EDITORIAL CONTACTS

Dr Philippe Aigrain
CEO, Sopinspace
4, passage de la Main d’Or
F-75011 Paris
France
philippe.aigrain@sopinspace.com

Professor Juan Carlos De Martin
Co-Director, NEXA Center for Internet & Society
Politecnico di Torino – DAUIN
Corso Duca degli Abruzzi, 24
I-10129 TORINO
Italy
demartin@polito.it

Urs Gasser
Executive Director
Berkman Center for Internet & Society
23 Everett Street, 2nd Floor
Cambridge, MA 02138
USA
ugasser@cyber.law.harvard.edu

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Alternative Culture

 

COMMONALITIES CONFERENCE

Please join us for “Commonalities: Theorizing the Common in Contemporary Italian Thought,” a conference sponsored by the journal diacritics. The event, to be held at Cornell University on September 24-25, 2010, will bring together a number of leading thinkers around the theme and question of the common. Participants will include Kevin Attell, Franco “Bifo” Berardi, Remo Bodei, Bruno Bosteels, Cesare Casarino, Roberto Esposito, Ida Dominijanni, Michael Hardt, Antonio Negri (by video conference), and Karen Pinkus. More information can be found at the conference website (www.commonconf.com) or by contacting Professor Timothy Campbell (tcc9@cornell.edu)

Il manifesto
For the better part of a decade the position of Italian thought in the Anglo-American academy has increasingly grown in importance. From issues as far ranging as bioethics and bioengineering, to euthanasia, to globalization, to theorizing gender, to the war on terror, works originating in Italy have played a significant, perhaps even the dominant, role in setting the terms and conditions of these debates. Indeed it might well be that no contemporary thought more than Italian enjoys greater success today in the United States. If twenty years of postmodernism and poststructuralism were in large measure the result of French exports to the United States — Derrida, Lacan, Deleuze, and Foucault — today a number of Italian philosophical exports are giving rise to a theoretical dispositif that goes under a variety of names: post-Marxist, posthuman, or most often biopolitical. Yet the fact that Italian thought enjoys such enormous success in the United States and elsewhere begs an important question, one put to me polemically recently by a prominent Italian philosopher. Is there really such a thing as contemporary Italian thought? And if there is what in the world do its proponents have in common?

By way of responding, it might be useful to recall some details about the recent reception of Italian thought in the American academy. In the aftermath of the end of the postmodern — which a number of American observers savored as spelling the end of the use and abuse of philosophy by large numbers of literary critics — two works appeared in English within a span of three years: Giorgio Agamben’s ‘Homo Sacer’ and Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri’s ‘Empire’. Stepping into the void left by the departure of what in the United States was known as “theory,” these works made a number of bold theoretical claims about the relation between political power and individual life (Agamben) and globalization and collective life (Hardt and Negri), claims that uncannily – sometimes almost prophetically – addressed some of the most pressing issues in our current state of affairs. Equally a number of important works of Italian feminism appeared over roughly the same period. Works by Adriana Cavarero and Rosi Braidotti, among others, deeply influenced a whole generation of American theorists in fields like gender studies, political philosophy, and law. Looking back it’s difficult to overestimate the influence of all these figures when accounting for the intellectual success of Italian thought today. Certainly it became possible for other voices to be heard, Paolo Virno, and more recently Franco Berardi, Roberto Esposito, and Maurizio Lazzarato among others.

But to take up again the question at hand: what do authors as seemingly different as Agamben and Negri, Berardi and Esposito, Braidotti and Bodei, or Cavarero and Virno have in common outside of the mere fact of writing in Italian? Beyond a common language, is there, for example, such a thing as a common Italian philosophical tradition of which they are all a part? Some, most notably, Mario Perniola, would say yes, one found in the elements of repetition, transmission, mixture, and body that together forged an Italian philosophical culture over the last 300 years. Deleuze and Guattari would have said no, arguing that Italy has historically “lacked a milieu” for philosophy. For them the reason for this lack could be found in Italy’s proximity to the Holy See, which continually aborted philosophy across the peninsula, reducing Italian thought to mere rhetoric, philosophy’s shadow, and allowing only for the occasional “comet” to briefly light up the philosophical sky. Yet what if Italian thought today does in fact enjoy a milieu? What “event” or “events” in the recent past might have fashioned a milieu for the emergence of Italian thought? What would the features of that milieu look like?

Undoubtedly, the decade-long Italian 1968 would have played the decisive role. The votes on abortion, the emergence of counterculture and student and feminist movements, and changes in labor and production all deeply changed the space in which politics — as well as philosophy – was practiced. Indeed one of the central features of the Italian 1968 was precisely the emphasis on politics as philosophy and philosophy as a form (among others) of politics. We can see this in the place 1968 and 1977 awarded political militancy; in the increasing prominence given to questions of subjectivization; and more broadly in the birth of new forms of social and political life separated from those that had previously dominated.

Yet Italy’s long 1968 wasn’t enough on its own. It was only with 1989 and the fall of the Berlin Wall that politics and philosophy truly begin to pass intensely into each other, to stay with the language of Deleuze and Guattari. Although it may seem less the case for those writing in Italy, when seen from the outside 1989 was experienced as trauma more in Italy than in the rest of Europe. The result forced a number of thinkers to re-examine the fundamental political and philosophical categories that had underpinned decades if not centuries of thought: what meaning would the end of a certain form of common life have for politics, for philosophy, for culture? Such a calling into question of the previous understanding of the common had the effect of reterritorializing politics and philosophy under new terms and new problematics, one of which will be “life,” broadly speaking. It is only when 1968 is considered as the motor for deterritorialization of the common in political theory and philosophy and 1989 as the turn toward its reterritorialization as newly mapped by (among other things) biopolitical theory that something like a milieu is constructed for contemporary Italian thought.

This is not to say that proponents of Italian thought share the same understanding of the common or even celebrate it. Clearly they do not. Yet the centrality of the common raises a number of questions about Italian thought and Italian public life today. What does it mean to be or have in common in 2010? What are the effects of questioning the weight of shared life and what possible futures are there for the common? How might singularities be thought together so as to create new forms of life and what kinds of co-habitations or contaminations might reinforce these new forms of life? These kinds of questions are ones Italian thought, in all its diversity, has placed at the forefront of contemporary theory, questions that in turn raise fundamental questions about the nature of relationality and of a politics that would seek to strengthen relations and to extend them in order to create yet further relationality. Such is the force of Hardt and Negri’s discussion of the capacity for love near the end of Commonwealth, though one can well imagine others, including a capacity for play, for attention, and for compassion too.

Yet the relationality implicit in these new forms of shared life doesn’t only lead to greater and more positive capacities for relationality among singularities. The deterritorialization of the common as biopolitics, the posthuman or even insurrection by no means conjures away the specter of power; thus with greater capacity on the one hand comes the possibility of more intense and invasive forms of power on the other. The question then becomes: how are new forms of the common that are being forged today — shared singularities, mirror neurons, impersonality – also being reterritorialized and recontained, and by whom? Is it possible that more intense forms of relationality might signal a return to the very terms that earlier critiques of the common had attempted to uncover? On the one hand the recent success of social networking sites like Facebook suggests that new forms of virtual relations involving vast numbers of “friends” are not only possible but involve ever greater exposure to others. On the other hand such exchanges continue to be premised on the notion that my body and my opinions belong to me, what the Invisible Committee unforgetably characterized as treating “our Self like a boring box office,” using whatever prosthesis is at hand “to hold onto an I.” In such a neo-liberal scenario, the circulation of information, of goods, of persons, of persons as goods is taken to mean a return to a common mode of being-together. It’s a film we’ve seen countless times before: the common’s reinscription in contexts less open to affect that are continually based upon a conflation of connnectivity with more open modes of relating.

These questions among others will be the foundation for a two-day conference sponsored by the journal Diacritics to be held on the campus of Cornell University on September 24-25, 2010. The conference, titled “Commonalities: Theorizing the Common in Italian Thought,” will bring together a number of Italian voices so as to think together not only the relation between Italy and the common but to consider emerging forms of the common and common life today as well as consider the efficacy of a term like the common for a progressive (bio)politics. Equally, the event, the first of its kind of recent memory in the United States, is an occasion to register the state of Italian thought today. When seen from the other side of the Atlantic, no other contemporary thought more than Italian seems better suited today to offer what Foucault called an ontology of the present. At a minimum, and pace my doubting Italian philosopher, the editorial and intellectual success of Italian thought merits a closer look.

Featured at the conference will be some of the leading philosophical figures from Italy today, including Franco Berardi, Remo Bodei, Cesare Casarino, Ida Dominjanni, Roberto Esposito, Michael Hardt, and Antonio Negri. The conference will be transmitted over the internet at http://www.commonconf.com. A number of Cornell students will be blogging the conference live over the two days.

Antonio Negri

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