Search

ENTANGLED MILIEUS:

Co-Constituting a Shared Futurity


(slow, un-disciplined conference)



CALL FOR PARTICIPATION


EXTENDED DEADLINE: MAY 01, 2022



October 22 - 30, 2022 in Cyprus



The milieu emerges from an onto-epistemological entanglement where meaning and matter, or discursive and material practices, co-constitute the shared, living environments of human subjects and more-than-human entities alike. In these entanglements differentiation is the norm, and thus conflict and tensions are unavoidable, particularly in zones in which anthropocentric action accounts for radically asymmetrical environmental transformation. The striation of landscapes through the imposition of large-scale infrastructures; the devastation of ecosystems through resource extraction; rampant sprawl at the hand of real estate industries; the exhaustion of soil quality through agro-industrial monocultures; and the pollution and contamination of entire habitats are but a few examples of the detrimental actions over the environment typical of global neoliberal capitalist interests, and their blind advance toward the dead-end of ‘progress, growth and profit’. The growing awareness of the -often irreversible- impact of these actions upon the landscape triggers a host of responses and reactions, from environmental and social struggles and resistance, to incommensurable attempts to ameliorate the damage through a discourse set in techno-deterministic ‘solutionism’, a myopic managerial approach that time and again fails in its futile pursuit of so-called ‘least resistance paths’.

What this attitude occludes and ignores is the significance of politicized material territories, everyday resistances and minor practices through which another milieu is generated: one that emerges from the entanglement of discourse (meaning) and materiality (space-matter). This milieu unfolds through human interventions on the territory, and is co-constituted by material, spatial and political conditions that transform the meaning of the ground, the land, the soil, the earth on the one hand, and on the other, of other critical elementary components and substances constitutive of the environment such as air and water. What these conditions reveal is not only that the trans-scalar spatial implementation and the desire for geo-political capture and control have deep implications for our understanding of the lived environments, of the middle, of the milieu. They also evidence the limits of their own instrumentalization: where political potentiality wavers, other, undisciplined material-discursive practices emerge, perhaps offering alternatives to re-imagine shared futurities.

In this light, the conference broadens the scope of territorial considerations through an understanding of material-discursive engagements, entanglements and practices through which the milieu is constituted. It incorporates the instrumentalization of critical elementary ‘substance-spaces’ of soil, water and air and extends them into the investigation of the thick surfaces and critical zones of our living environment. To produce and generate futurity-oriented imaginaries that address rising and raising frictions, as well as conflicting and conflictual conditions, an undisciplined perspective, that is, an approach that takes distance from any sort of binarism, and/or (mono)disciplinary specificity is paramount.




CALL FOR PARTICIPATION

Deadline: May 01, 2022


a. Call for reports from the field

In an attempt to radically rethink the conventional idea of the academic conference, the organizers enrich the call for paper proposals, with a call for participation to share individual and collective cross-media works. Under the heading ‘reports from the field’, the organizers invite researchers, scholars, activists, practitioners and artists to formulate and develop inquiries into entangled milieus in Cyprus, in any format and modality they feel appropriate: journalistic reports, drawings, films, archival work, photographs, photographic essays, research reports, etc.


b. Call for papers

In addition to the call for ‘reports from the field’, the organizers invite scholars and participants who are interested in presenting an academic paper at the conference, to submit paper proposals that address the questions of ‘entangled milieus’ through a discussion of shared futurities. The nature of this ‘undisciplined’ conference specifically asks for contributions stemming from an abundance of different points of view, in an attempt to initiate a debate across disciplines, while also relating examples of practice with scholarly positions.


Format of statements of intent

The participants should send their statements of intent for both genre of contribution. The statements of intent should not exceed 300 words and they should be accompanied by a short biographical note (100-200 words). They should be sent by 01 May 2022 to the conference organizers’ email: entangledmilieus@gmail.com


For more information visit www.entangledmilieus.com



Conference organizers:

dr. Armina Pilav; dr. Marc Schoonderbeek; dr. Heidi Sohn; dr. Aleksandar Staničić,

dr. Socrates Stratis and Grazia Tona