06thFeb2017

International conference CULTURAL MOBILIZATION

Amsterdam, 19-22 September 2018 – Call for Papers

A major international conference on Cultural mobilization: Cultural consciousness-raising and national movements in Europe and the world will be held in Amsterdam between 19 and 22 September 2018. The conference is organized by SPIN in association with NISE (Antwerp) and ASEN (London). Proposals for papers or panels can be submitted until 30 November 2017.

Nationalism relies intensely on cultural consciousness-raising. Post-1789 states increasingly invoke the national culture they claim to incorporate; national movements assert their rights within or against the state by defining their identity in cultural terms (language, ethnicity, collective memory); cultural production (literature, the arts, music) and knowledge production (philology, folklore, history-writing) invoke, indeed often construct, the nation’s cultural identity.
That state institutions or political activists instrumentalize cultural notions of collective identity for propaganda purposes, is well known; but the “cultivation of culture” is more than a passive propaganda tool: it is a broadly-based social praxis, involving both cultural production and knowledge production, carried by artists and intellectuals, with its own inner dynamics, social agency and mobilizing power.
The artistic and intellectual undercurrents of cultural nationalism, its intermedial entanglements and transnational diffusion, have been studied as part of the modernizing dynamics of, specifically, 19th-century Europe. On that basis, the conference proposed here aims to broaden the scope in two directions:
[1] How did cultural nationalism exercise its agency for social or political mobilization? How to analyse the relationship between political and cultural nationalism if we trace causality and agency from cultural practices into politics?
[2] To what extent is this cultural mobilization peculiar to Europe? What parallels, interactions or differences were there with nationalism and national movements in the wider world?

Possible fields of attention:
Historical cases of culturally triggered or motivated activism; cultural producers and knowledge producers as a conduit between ‘elites’ and ‘masses’; the European and global networks of cultural producers and knowledge producers; colonial nationalism ; cultural activism in anti-imperialism and anticolonialism; (non-)European empires and their multi-ethnicity; theory of culture-political relations; Bengal Renaissance; Pan-Africanism; Meiji Japan; Turanism; indigenous rights movements.
Papers/panels with a comparative/transnational scope will be particularly welcome.

Please address proposals for papers or panels to SPIN (SPIN@uva.nl) before 31 October.

Latest Blog Posts

03rdOct2017

Book version of the Encyclopedia in production

The book version of the Encyclopedia of Romantic Nationalism in Europe is in production now with Amsetrdam University Press.

The 1400 articles will be presenetd in a two-volume format with an extensive introduction on Romantic Nationalism, and accompanied by ca. 150 illustrations and indexes. Innovative design captures the intricate cross-referencing structure from the hyperlnks on the web version, while the book fomat affords an instant overview and browsable, haptic access to the complete Europe-wide coverage of cultural currents and nodal personalities.[....]

Continue reading
27thSep2017

"The Rhine: National tensions, Romantic visions" now out

Edited by Manfred Beller and Joep Leerssen, and the fruit of a series of SPIN workshops, the book has appeared in Brill’s European Studies series. One of the first English-langage historical surveys of the transnational, especially German-French entanglements and confrontations over this European geographical and cultural core region, brings together eminent literary and cultural specialists and present materials and analyses from various perspectives – literature, tourism, heritage, geopolitics.

Of all European landscapes and regions, the Rhine is one of the most heavily overlaid with cultural and political meaning. Cradle of Romanticism, tourism, and the picturesque, bone of contention between the German and French spheres of cultural and geopolitical influence, the Rhine has attracted armies, artists, activists and tourists for centuries and has featured prominently the key writings of Europe’s literary and intellectual history from Byron to Lucien Febvre.[....]

Continue reading