50 Shades of Popular Culture International Conference

Country: Poland

City: Krakow

Abstr. due: 30.11.2015

Dates: 18.02.16 — 21.02.16

Area Of Sciences: Cultural science;

Organizing comittee e-mail: 50shadesofpopculture@gmail.com

Organizers: Jagiellonian University


Contrary to common belief popular culture is not that much coherent a phenomenon to be so easily isolated from cultural flow and defined in such splendid isolation. The persevering existence of the division between so called “high” and “low” is, as seems, fuelled primarily by a need of juxtaposing esteemed and engaging texts of culture. Today such a division is no longer intellectually acceptable since it clearly imposes a paradigmatic systematisation and introduces, once again, philosophically compromised binary oppositions. Meanwhile, in the past few decades, a new critical discourse have managed to emerge, a discourse pivoted around interdisciplinary popculture studies, and diverse at least as much as the research subject itself. One cannot use the same language while studying melodramas and speculative SF, or heavy metal and Marvel’s filmography, J. K. Rowling and first-person shooters in video games. The purpose of organising International Conference 50 Shades of Popular Culture would be, therefore, to see all the eponymous shades of this discourse and to encourage interdisciplinary re­flexion on:

  • genology in popular culture (blurring genre boundaries, proliferation of purely aesthetic conventions like steampunk, dieselpunk, noir, post-apo, bizarro, and so on);
  • ephemeral trends and fashions in popular literature, film, TV shows, video games, comic books etc. (e. g. Twilight saga, retro crime fiction or young adult dystopia);
  • major tendencies in the evolution of popular culture (literature, video games, movies, TV shows, music, transmedia, internet);
  • artists-celebrities and new ways of promoting artistic ventures;
  • fan contributions to the development of popular culture (fan fiction, cosplay, e-zins, convents, festivals, fan and aca-fan movement, self- and vanity publishing);
  • dichotomy of mainstream and underground, occurring both between so called high and low culture, and within each of them (e. g. marginalising horror in fantasy & SF fandom or ennobling vanguard realist novels in mainstream fiction);
  • convergence culture and franchised universes, in storytelling and world-building alike;
  • philosophy of popular art and culture and new theoretical approaches in the each of them;
  • development of alternative literary criticism (blogosphere, e-zins, fandom awards e. g. World Fantasy Award, MTV Fandom Awards, Bram Stoker Award etc., open access publishing, pop-culture blogs,etc.);
  • global, local and “glocal” manifestations of popular culture.

Please note that all those topics only briefly outline the conference scope and authors of abstracts are strongly encouraged to develop their papers further on. We are interested in general analyses of popular culture theory, philosophy and practice as well as in specific case studies.

Conference Web-Site: https://50shadesofpopculture.wordpress.com/