[Oberlist] WEB# cfp: Cities in turmoil
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Subject: [balkans] CfP: Cities in turmoil
From: "pavlos hatzopoulos" <phatzopoulos la re-public.gr>
Date: Tue, November 10, 2009 13:26
To: balkans la yahoogroups.com
Online journal Re-public <http://www.re-public.gr/en> invites contributions
for a special issue dedicated to *Cities in Turmoil*. Cities matter
politically, not merely as sites where the political occurs, but as part of
the political itself, participating in the reconfiguration of citizenship.
This is the space in which local topographies are interconnected and
re-divided, the container and stage of political conflict, where formal
institutions and non-state movements develop agendas, often aimed at
releasing and mobilizing affect, such as ridicule, anger, apathy and
indifference. Within this context, urban turmoil is at the same time
perceived as a threat and as an opportunity and its legacy equally demonised
Inhabitants of Athens are as familiar with the poetics of paralysis as they
are accustomed to the violence that often accompanies it; inertia and
upheaval seem to take turns as protagonists in the urban life, feeding into
the collective imagination. Reactions to paralysis range from voices of
confusion to resignation, to protest and anger. Such was the case last
December, when residents of Athens, Greeks and immigrants alike, with
diverse socio-economic and ethnic backgrounds took to the streets to protest
against state violence after the murder of a teenager by a policeman in the
centre of Athens. In the following weeks, the city was shaken by a wave of
violent rallies, during which agents and symbols of government, nationalism
and capitalism were targeted and public space reclaimed by those previously
excluded from it. The events were preceded by a long period of silence, when
inhabitants of the capital were portrayed by the mainstream media as
disaffected with formal politics, refusing to engage with the state and
retrieving instead to their own private spheres. The interchangeable
discourses of apathy and anger employed by the media became prevalent and
were subsequently adopted and reformulated by a large part of the citizens
themselves, but also state institutions and representatives.
The conditions and processes that led to the December events, may have
brought Athens to the fore, but are not specific to Greece. Indeed, rapid
urbanisation across the world has forced new relationships between citizen
and state, mediated and articulated by rapidly growing and changing cities.
The city acts both as the seat of government and as site of resistance but
rapid growth and a changing population reconfigures the very notion of
citizenship, challenges what is the public and the private and calls for
other modes of participation in its political affairs.
Submissions may deal with the theme from various disciplinary perspectives
and may be about (but not restricted to) the following:
- The contestation of urban public space;
- Negotiation between the urban margins and the centre, between the
formal and the informal, between local residents with recognised rights
those excluded from the right to the city;
- Politics of apathy and anger in the city: processes of radicalisation
and the generation of multiple articulations of violence;
- The inscription of memory, the traces of uprisings on the city.
Essays should be approximately *1,500 1,800 words *.
Please submit contributions in any electronic format to guest editors of the
special issue Gia Galati and Kostantis Kastrissianakis
e-mail: < giagalati AT hotmail.com > and < kostak7 AT gmail.com >
Deadline for submissions: *Friday, 15 January 2010*
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