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Revolution in Psychology – by Ian Parker

SUSPENSION OF IAN PARKER – INTERNATIONAL PROTEST!

Dearest friends:

Something incredibly shocking has happened. Ian Parker has been suspended from Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU). It has happened suddenly and unexpectedly, and students and staff at the University have been given little to no explanation as to why.

Ian was suspended from work after having been unable to arrange, with barely 18 hours notice, for a union official to come with him to hear a charge that the university said amounted to ‘gross professional misconduct’. What this seems to mean is that Ian raised concerns within the University about the problem of secrecy and control in the department in which he works, and was suspended for doing so. Ian has had to leave his office and key, been told not to contact University staff and students, and his access to his email has been suspended.

For his students Ian has simply ‘disappeared’ overnight, and while he is keen to continue supervising and teaching, he is not allowed to.

I could never fully express what effect Ian’s sudden, shocking and completely unjustified suspension might mean for students at MMU and for the wider international academic community. Ian’s suspension is happening against a wider backdrop in the UK where while universities are now charging students £9000 a year (and much more for international students), and they are also cutting essential resources, often meaning staff have to work harder and complain less. This means that those staff who defend University as a space for open and democratic deliberation are often put under pressure to remain silent.

In fact another member of staff at MMU (and another member of the University and College Union – the UCU), Christine Vié, is also being victimised, and has been made compulsorily redundant (and there is an ongoing campaign to defend her). We are in shock, but only if we speak openly together will we be in a position to challenge and change what is happening to all of us.

Openness and democratic debate are the hallmarks of good education. Yet secrecy and silencing are key issues here.Ian has been silenced but his work continues to speak.

Yesterday I looked at the principle aims of ‘Psychology, Politics, Resistance’, which Ian helped to set up in 1994 as a network of people who were prepared to oppose the abusive uses and oppressive consequences of psychology, to support individuals to challenge exploitation, to develop a collective active opposition to oppression, and to make this a key element in the education of all psychologists.

So, let’s act together, and follow Ian’s example, and speak out – tell as many people as we can, and come together collectively as an international critical community to call upon the management of MMU to come to a resolution of this problem and to reinstate Ian.

Messages of protest can be sent to the Vice-Chancellor John Brooks (j.brooks) and the Head of the Department of Psychology Christine Horrocks (c.horrocks). These messages can be copied as messages of solidarity to the MMU UCU chair Pura Ariza (p.ariza) and it is imperative that, at the same time, support should be stepped up to support Christine Vié (c.vie).

The postgraduate students at MMU are sending a letter to the Vice Chancellor, and there will be flyers and posters put up on campus, and call outs in lectures all next week. Please do send letters and emails, and tell as many people as you can.

We will keep you posted about further action, and do let us know if you have any ideas for how we can fight this together (because we can fight this together). Please feel free to email me china.t.mills.

In solidarity,
China Mills (alongside many of the students at MMU)

From: http://criticalpsygreece.org/2012/10/06/suspention-of-ian-parker-international-protest/

Messages of protest can be sent to the Vice-Chancellor John Brooks (j.brooks@mmu.ac.uk) and the Head of the Department of Psychology Christine Horrocks (c.horrocks@mmu.ac.uk). These messages can be copied as messages of solidarity to the MMU UCU chair Pura Ariza (p.ariza@mmu.ac.uk) and it is imperative that, at the same time, support should be stepped up to support Christine Vié (c.vie@mmu.ac.uk).

 

**END**

 

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The Lighthouse

CULTURES OF SURVEILLANCE

Call for Papers:

“Cultures of Surveillance”: An Interdisciplinary Conference,

Sponsored by The Film Studies Space: The Centre for the Cultural History of the Moving Image,

UCL (University College London), 29 September – 1 October 2011

We are being watched. The amazing part is that we are no longer even surprised by this. The culture of surveillance increasingly surrounds us in Europe where omnipresent CCTV cameras remind us that nothing escapes the invisible gaze of those behind the lens. At UCL, we have long been surveyed by our founder, Jeremy Bentham, who sits in a wooden case in the lobby and peers from glass eyes and a wax head: his own ‘icon’ body signals that he not only knew what surveillance meant but named it through his invention of the Panopticon. That imaginary device, which Bentham proposed would “help reform morals, preserve health, invigorate industry, diffuse instruction, and lighten public burdens,” continues to be a resonant touchstone for questions about the way governments and private agencies keep watch over our interests – and theirs. This conference, held where Bentham goes on watching both literally and metaphorically, proposes to explore, broadly, the interdisciplinary frameworks for understanding modern surveillance and, particularly, how surveillance practices intersect with visual technologies and histories of culture.

Our conference project emerges from an eagerness to think in new ways about surveillance practices as they intersect with culture, visual culture, and moving image studies. We start from the vantage point that there are many frameworks through which surveillance might be imagined today, ranging from the kinds of surveillance that entail keeping a friendly watch over each other to those represented by policing practices, government monitoring, and undercover investigations.

Our call for papers likewise assumes that questions about surveillance have become central to today’s world, as states and cultures grapple with the complex dynamics of security and liberty and as corporations demand ever more precise data about the world’s populations. As a modern panoptical city, Londonstands at the centre of the shift away from a Cold War culture of surveillance toward the post-9/11 order of things. It has long been one of the centres for the development and deployment of surveillance practices ranging from census taking to identification methods (such as fingerprinting, photography, passports, and DNA typing). It has also served over the past two centuries as a crucial nexus for practices of culture that perpetuate – and often question – the work of both social surveillance and self-surveillance: for example, the novel, detective fiction, museums, and the BBC. Visual recording and representations have historically played a central role in surveillance practices throughout the industrialising world: printmaking, photography, the cinema, and televisual moving images have accompanied the rise of the modern police force and the development of security systems in public as well as private spaces. “Cultures of Surveillance” hopes to address these intertwined histories of surveillance, practices of governance, visual technologies, and cultural forms.

This conference is sponsored by UCL’s Film Studies Space, an interdisciplinary centre for the study of the cultural history of moving images. It derives from two ongoing research projects, The Work of Film, investigating the ways moving images have been utilised by states and corporations to guide the conduct of populations; and The Autopsies Project, examining the afterlife of material objects in relation to the history of consumer culture and cinematic memory. We hope that conference presenters will discuss a range of issues in the long history of surveillance practices, from photography to digital media.

We anticipate contributions that analyse the myriad ways that visual culture has been enmeshed with political rationalities. We are keen to expand our frameworks far beyond the sphere of Londonand to look outside the Panopticon. We especially hope that contributions will find new ways of asking what it means to watch and to be watched, and to police and to be policed. We look forward to discussing ways that scholars of the humanities can interrogate the networks of surveillance that both protect and transform our world.

Following an opening lecture by Professor Tom Gunning, The University of Chicago, on Thursday, 29 Sept. 2011, the Conference will take place on Friday and Saturday, 30 Sept. and 1 Oct. 2011.

Topics might include but are not limited to:

* Histories of surveillance technologies and their applications

* The geo-politics of surveillance (in the 19th century? in Cold War culture? After 9/11?)

* Architectures of surveillance – visibility and urban space

* Film and television representations of surveillance / Film and the construction of public space

* Photography and the police

* Constructions of identity and surveillance methods (fingerprinting, passports, census taking)

* The hidden objects of surveillance (cameras, tape recorders, transmitters, interceptors, tracking systems)

* Histories and representations of objects associated with the collection, storage, and retrieval of personal data: from filing cabinets, paper shredders, computers …. (etc.)

* The Obsolete Objects of Surveillance (i.e., objects of surveillance that have fallen out of use)

* How do objects make visible personal data that is otherwise invisible?

* Self-policing: how do we watch them watch us?

* Technologies of the self and new media / Technologies of the self and dead media

* Systems of meaning and truth under surveillance/ imaginary and real inventions for policing and detecting such as lie detectors, truth serums, mind reading

* War-time surveillance: rationing and ration books, black market trading (representations and history)

* Governmental efforts to educate citizens (e.g. road safety campaigns, anti-littering campaigns, anti-smoking campaigns, etc.), both in filmic representation or through tv and press media.

* The gadgets of surveillance in spy films

* The art of CCTV cameras / Cultural plays with CCTV

* Watching cultures and Reality TV

* The relationship of bodies to surveillance technologies.

* The arts of documentary photography

* Prison plans and texts

* Watching you watching me: photography OF the police

* Under-cover policing in Film Noir / Policing practices in TV crime series

* Police procedurals (novelistic, cinematic, televisual)

* Forensic science and the invention of modern vision

* Panopticism and cinematic surveillance: theories, practices, and representations

* The relationship between voyeurism and surveillance

* New visibilities of surveillance / Changing temporalities and spaces of surveillance

* Documentary (as) surveillance

* Self-registration (tattoos, dog-tags) and rights

* Neighbourhood watch, curtain twitchers, vigilante work: putting the everyday under surveillance

* ‘Take back the night’ and women’s relationship to surveillance

* The political economy of visual technology and surveillance

* Advanced capitalism and (visual) cultures of surveillance

* Surveillance regimes in comparative historical, national, and political contexts

* Watching out for the future: surveillance technologies in science fiction

* ‘They have me under surveillance’: Paranoia and modernity

* Design technologies and panopticism / anti-panopticism

* The aesthetics of surveillance

* What can humanities scholars bring to current debates about surveillance?

* How can film studies contribute to debates about surveillance culture?

Individual papers are invited from scholars and researchers in any discipline of the humanities, arts, social sciences, and sciences. Scholars from postgraduate to permanent senior academics are welcome to submit papers. Presentations would equally be welcomed from artists and filmmakers.

One-page abstracts for 20-minute presentations and a brief c.v. should be sent by Wed., 15 June to:

The Culture of Surveillance Conference Organisers

(Lee Grieveson, Rebecca Harrison, Jann Matlock, and Simon Rothon) at deadobjects@gmail.com

Participants will be notified by 30 June 2011

A conference publication is projected.

For more information on our projects, see http://www.autopsiesgroup.com and http://twitter.com/autopsiesgroup

—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)

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Awkward Digressions

NATIONAL CRITICAL LAWYERS’ GROUP CONFERENCE 2011

The State We’re In

University of Kent, Canterbury
5th – 6th March 2011

http://www.nclg.org.uk/Conference%202010/Conference%202011%20index.htm

The National Critical Lawyers’ Group is proud to present the National Critical Lawyers Conference 2011, hosted in Woolf College at the University of Kent at Canterbury by the UKC Critical Lawyers’ Group.

The conference is sponsored by Kent Law School, Social & Legal Studies.and the Haldane Society This year’s conference, entitled ‘The State We’re In’, will provide space for critical discussion of a wide range of issues including the Financial Crisis and Funding Cuts; Israel and Palestine; the war in Iraq; Disability Rights; Equality Issues; Law, Gender and Sexuality; EU & Sovereignty; Environmental Issues; Justice within Asylum and Immigration Law; Ethics of Medical Law; Corporate Governance and Capitalism; Comparative Law; Critical Legal Education; Privacy & Censorship; Housing Law and many others.

Plenary speakers include:

Courtenay Griffiths QC;

Michael Mansfield QC; 

Liz Davies;

Vera Baird MP;

Phil Shiner;

Roger Smith;

Professor Bill Bowring;

Professor Alex Callinicos;

Sir Burton Hall; and

Professor Paddy Ireland 

We encourage students, academic, practitioners, activists and anyone else with an interest in the law to attend as a means of stimulating critical legal thought and action.

We hope to provide Continuing Professional Development hours accredited by both the Bar Council and the Law Society for both speakers and attendees.

There will also be subsidised accommodation available to students. As this accommodation is limited in number, it will be allocated on a first-come first-served basis.

Provisional Timetable

Saturday 5th March 2011

0900-1045: Arrivals & Registration (Woolf College, University of Kent)

1045-1100: Welcome address

1100-1300: Plenary Session

11300-1400pm: Lunch

1400-1530pm: Panel Session 1

1530-1600: Coffee Break

1600-1800pm: Plenary Session 2

There will be a Drinks Reception kindly sponsored by the Vice-Chancellor of The University of Kent during the evening.

Sunday 6th March 2011

0930-1100: Panel Session 2

1100-1130: Coffee Break

1130-1300: Panel Session 3

1300-1400: Lunch

1400-1600: Plenary Session 3

Panel Sessions

This year’s panel sessions include:

   · The War on Terror

   · Inequality and Property

   · EU and Sovereignty

   · Access to Justice

   · Piracy

   · Can law protect the planet ‘Aarhus Convention’

   · Ethics of Medical Law

   · International War and Law

   · Human Rights

   · Justice within Asylum and Immigration Law

   · Criminal Justice

   · Corporate Governance/Capitalism

   · Critical Look at Comparative Law

   · Legal Education/Pro-Bono

   · Equality Bill

   · Disability Rights

   · Privacy/Censorship – ‘Where are we with Article 10’

   · Housing

   · Surveillance

   · Law, Gender and Sexuality

   · Race and the Law

   · The Financial and Economic Crisis

   · World Trade and Finance

   · Israel and Palestine

   · Critical Legal Education

The National Critical Lawyers’ Group local organising committee: nclg2011@kent.ac.uk

Ian Grigg-Spall
Academic Chair
National Critical Lawyers Group
Kent Law School
University
Canterbury
CT2 7NS
Tele 01227 766233

Website http://www.nclg.org.uk ||| to subscribe go to site

‘the point is not merely to interpret the world but to change it’

‘for injustice to prevail all it takes is for good persons to do nothing’

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THE GLOBALISATION OF SURVEILLANCE

The Origin of the Securitarian Order
Armand Mattelart
Translated by Susan Gruenheck Taponier and James A. Cohen

Globalization

Video surveillance, public records, fingerprints, hidden microphones, radio frequency chips: in contemporary societies the use of intrusive techniques of surveillance in daily life has increased dramatically. The ‘war against terror’ has only exacerbated this trend, creating a world that is closer than one might imagine to the one envisaged by George Orwell in 1984.

How did we reach this point? Why have democratic societies allowed their rights and freedoms to be taken away, little by little, through increasingly sophisticated surveillance mechanisms?

From the anthropometry of the nineteenth century to the Patriot Act, via an analysis of military theory and the Echelon project, Armand Mattelart constructs a genealogy of this new power of control and examines its globalizing dynamic.

This book provides an essential wake-up call at a time when democratic societies are becoming less and less vigilant against the dangers of proliferating systems of surveillance.

A tightly packed and critical history of the global rise of security, surveillance and suspicion.’— David Lyon, Queens University

This book cuts through the clutter of post-9/11 political rhetoric to reveal the contours of a global capitalist surveillance economy in which the logics of policing and marketing converge. Mattelart counters the urgent injunction to ignore history in the face of the contemporary threat (because “everything has changed”) by exploring the long marriage between capitalism and surveillance. The book shows us how the mobilization of the promise of security has been used to undermine freedom, and suggests what it might mean to think the two together. This is an indispensable work that explores the sometimes invisible atmosphere in which we move: that of ubiquitous surveillance, tracking, and targeting – and the interests which these serve.’— Mark Andrejevic, University of Iowa

Printed in Great Britain, August 2010

Polity Books: http://www.politybooks.com

 

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Just Space

SPACES OF ALTERITY

Conference: Call for Papers

Spaces of Alterity: Conceptualising Counter-Hegemonic Sites, Practices and Narratives

University of Nottingham, UK
28th-29th April 2011

Confirmed Plenary Speakers:

China Miéville and Dr. Alberto Toscano

This two day international conference for postgraduate and early career researchers explores interdisciplinary conceptions and representations of radical, counter-hegemonic space.

As concerns grow over such issues as spatial privatisation, commodification and homogenisation, surveillance, extra-legal spaces, social and political ‘non-spaces’, and the loss of common or public spaces, so too a plethora of interventions—across genre and disciplinary boundaries—have been launched in opposition to these trends. Examples are diverse, and can be found, for example, in literary studies of estranging narratives in contemporary fiction; spatial representations in film, TV and new media; the creation of critical spaces of alterity in political activism (such as semi-autonomous zones); psychogeographical spatial strategies, and philosophical and theoretical conceptions of counter-hegemonic space.

We invite proposals for papers of 20 minutes from candidates across the arts and humanities, welcoming individual papers as well as group panels that respond to these and other conceptions of counter-hegemonic “Spaces of Alterity”. Possible research questions include, but are not limited to:

    • What estranging utopian, dystopian, post-apocalyptic and science fiction spaces of alterity are being utilised in contemporary aesthetic and cultural productions, e.g. film, literature, TV, art, computer games?
    • How do these narratives travel across media and what changes occur when they are adapted, reworked and transformed? What research questions are raised by such collaborations, transmissions and intermedial dialogues?
    • How can we approach traditionally-understood print and audio-visual texts in relation to virtual spaces of alterity, such as fan-based communities, social networking sites and other sites developed through user-generated content (UGC)?
    • What are the relationships between textual spaces of alterity and non-textual forums, communities and dialogues?
    • What physical spaces of alterity are being constructed in contemporary urban environments?
    • How are such spaces critical, oppositional or subversive and how do they draw on the contributions of local communities and organisations?
    • How do spaces of alterity which are informed by traditionally-understood “texts” function on the Internet and how can they inform our understanding of filmic, visual and literary textual methodologies and approaches?
    • What forms can counter-hegemonic, avant-garde, or ‘subtractive’ spaces—which can be spatial, but also temporal or conceptual—take?
    • What political, artistic, or scientific practices can such spaces foster? How does distance from institutions help form alternative political, literary and artistic practices?

Abstracts of 250-300 words should be sent by email as a Word attachment to spacesofalterity@gmail.com by Wednesday 3rd November 2010 and should include name, affiliation, e-mail address, title of paper and 4 keywords.

Conference website: http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/cultural-studies/research/conferences.aspx

Speakers:

China Miéville is a distinguished “Weird Fiction” novelist, activist, and lecturer in creative writing at the University of Warwick. His publications include King Rat (1998), Perido Street Station (2000), and Iron Council (2004). In 2010 he won the Arthur C. Clarke Award for an unprecedented second time with his latest novel, The City and the City (2009).

Alberto Toscano is senior lecturer in Philosophy at Goldsmiths, University of London. He has published extensively on social and political subjectivity, biopolitics, and the philosophy of Alain Badiou. His most recent work is Fanaticism (2010, Verso)

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Queen Mary College

COUNTER/MAPPING QUEEN MARY UNIVERSITY: THE UNIVERSITY AND BORDER TECHNOLOGIES

\\\\///\\ Counter/Mapping QMary ////

////////////////\\\////////The university and border technologies

To begin by asking ‘what is the university’ requires an investigation of the function of the university not only as a knowledge factory but also as a border. Our investigation of what the university produces as knowledge, hierarchies and power exposes the border/s that operate in, on and around the university. That ‘the university is a border’ is made possible by the operation of a filter mechanism. The counting of bodies, money in and money out, who can and can not enter, what are we when we leave, the limits of what is and is not knowledge and the complicity with national and global border regimes – who and what is stopped at the border?

A group of students, staff and researchers at Queen Mary University have set out to map the ways in which migration, border technologies, surveillance and monetary flows intersect with the university as our place of work and study. Joining us in the project are the <Counter-Cartographies Collective from the University of North Carolina>, who will help to explore the dynamics and possibilities of mapping as method and action.

From Thursday 13 May – Monday 24 May we will gather to discuss, research and take action to produce a counter map of Queen Mary University. As part of our practice we will be facilitating <three public workshops> to expand the participation and possibilities of the project. These workshops as well as the counter mapping production process are open to all who are interested and are free to attend – please see below for the programme and contact details. The venue for all events will be room 4.08 in the Francis Bancroft Building of Queen Mary Campus and is accessible.

//////Thursday 13 May, 2pm
\\\\\\\\\\Imaginaries of the university

<Opening event of the Counter/Mapping QMary project>

The Counter-Cartographies Collective will present their work on the neo-liberal university and discuss their maps, methodologies and actions. This session will address our imaginaries of the university – current and potential – and will conclude with a drift around QM campus.

\\\\\\\\Thursday 20 May, 2pm
//////////How to make a counter-map

<Workshop: mapping as method, practice and action>

The Counter-Cartographies Collective will facilitate a workshop on radical collaborative mapping skills using available open source mapping software and web-based data-mining techniques. Free and open to all, email us to register.

///////Monday 24 May, 4pm  
\\\\\\\\\\\The politics and potential of counter-mapping

<Presentation and open discussion>

In this event, Counter/Mapping QMary project will present their map of Queen Mary. This presentation will be followed by an open discussion of the methods and politics of mapping the university as a site of migration, education and labour struggles. Invited interlocutors: The Students not Suspects Campaign (Goldsmiths), No Cuts at Queen Mary Campaign, Jane Wills, David Pinder, Ishani Chandrasekara, Miguel Mellino, John Hutnyk, Alberto Toscano

///Contact\\\
Counter/Mapping QMary
countermapping.qmary@googlemail.com
Facebook: countermapping qmary

\\\The Counter///Mapping QMary Project is generously supported by the School of Business and Management and the Geography Department at Queen Mary University.

Map: http://www.qmul.ac.uk/about/campus/mileend/index.html#map

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