Friday, October 23, 2009

Conference_ Tales of Transit (Belgium 10-12 June 2010)

Another interesting international conference on the topic of migration called "Tales of Transit: Narrative Migrant Spaces in Transatlantic Perspective, 1830-1954" will take place in Antwerp (Belgium) in June 2010. A very informative website is already available.
A call for paper is open!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Conference_Language, Space and Otherness in Italy since 1861, Rome 24-25 June 2010

I am glad to announce an interesting conference that will take place in Rome the 24th and 25th of June 2010 at the British School. The organizer is prof. David Forgacs and confirmed speakers include John Agnew, Ruth Ben-Ghiat, Charles Burdett, Derek Duncan, John Foot, Mia Fuller, Robert Gordon, and Alessandro Portelli.

"The aim of the conference is to identify and investigate the main rhetorical strategies and devices used in Italy since Unification to define ‘others’ and those used to resist such definitions. How have different types of discourse and media produced certain ‘marked’ categories of people – for example the poor, sexual deviants, prostitutes, colonized subjects, gypsies, illegal immigrants, persons with disability or with mental illness? What happens when some of these people react with their own discourses, counter-definitions and actions?
How do definitions of difference and otherness work across space, for instance by drawing boundaries or constructing oppositions: core/periphery, metropolitan centre/colony, straight/bent, inside/outside, high/low, clean/dirty? Why have maps, borders and coastline acquired such strong significance at certain historical moments? Participants are invited to examine these processes in written and printed texts, oral life stories, songs, photographs, radio and moving image media".


At this confrence, I will also present a paper on "Redefing Italian Spaces: Piazza Vittorio and Transcultural Aesthetics". An abstract follows:

In 2002 the Italian musician Mario Tronco and the film director Agostino Ferrente decided to create an orchestra in the multicultural area of Rome, known as the Esquilino quarter. This project came out of their desire to put together the multi-ethnical variety of musicians who were dwelling in that part of Rome. The result was truly extraordinary: a large group, constituted by almost twenty musicians from many different countries, formed the so-called “Orchestra di Piazza Vittorio” and was directed by Mario Tronco. The Orchestra is now internationally known and is currently on tour all over the world. In 2006 Agostino Ferrente made a documentary about the Orchestra telling the story of its constitution. This film received many awards and has been screened all over the world.
The same year, 2006, saw the publication of a novel by the “Italophone” Algerian writer Amara Lakhous entitled Scontro di civiltà per un ascensore a P.zza Vittorio (“Clash of civilizations for an elevator in Piazza Vittorio”), which is again a story about the multicultural reality of Piazza Vittorio, an example, in fact, of the transformation of the Italian society and of the importance that Italian migrant literature is gradually gaining. Lakhous’ book reflects ironically and provocatively on the stereotypes and common places related to the idea of “otherness” within an Italian context.
Starting from these musical, cinematic and narrative examples, this paper aims at analysing how immigration in Italy is beginning to produce cultural performances that enter the larger context of popular culture, and to what extend these performances, as forms of aesthetic and cultural contributions, have been able to redefine Italian spaces.

Book_Visions of Struggle in Women’s Filmmaking in the Mediterranean

Another interesting book on migration and cinema will be published by Palgrave next February 2010. The editor is Flavia Laviosa. The preface is by Laura Mulvey.
Looking forward to getting a copy!

"Focusing on countries in the Mediterranean rim, as the unifying geo-cultural location for a contemporary discussion on women’s human, civil and social rights, this book elaborates a trans-cultural definition of being a woman in struggle. This provocative collection situates feminist arguments on questions of women’s identity, roles, psychology and sexuality. Such issues are examined through the films of women directors from Mediterranean countries, whose cinema is relevant to the discourse of women’s studies. Although their methodologies are diverse, these artists are united in their use of cinema as a means of
intervention, taking on the role as outspoken and leading advocates for women’s problems. Their cinematic art reproduces and structures the discourses of realism, recreating prototypical characters and figurations and magnifying the complex and unambiguous truths about women’s political, class, war and gender struggles. Contributors examine
representations of women’s unresolved issues and violated rights in films that are expressions of cultural challenges and socio-political commitment for Mediterranean women’s collective experience of struggle".

This book is the result of a symposium that took place at the Davis Museum
and Cultural Center November 2-3 2007.

Book_Translated People, Translated Texts Language and Migration in Contemporary African Literature

A new book on the relationship between translation and migration has been recently published by St. Jerome publishing house. The title is "Translated People, Translated Texts Language and Migration in Contemporary African Literature". The author is Tina Steiner.

"Translated People, Translated Texts makes a significant contribution to our understanding of migration as a common condition of the postcolonial world and offers a welcome insight into particular travellers and their unique translations".

All information here.

Call for Paper: The Mediterranean in Italian Culture_Conference 3-4 May 2010

Dear all,
a very interesting conference will be held in Venice and Udine on May 3 and 4, 2010. The topic is the Mediterranean and its cultural implications in the Italian horizon. More information about the call for paper here.

Call for article_Crossings: Journal of Migration and Culture

Dear all,
a new journal has just been created. The title is very pomising "Crossings: Journal of Migration and Culture". This journal "situates itself at the interface of Migration Studies and Cultural Studies".
There is a call for article for its first issue. The deadline is 1st of December 2009.
I'm planning to send an abstract for an article on film and migration. I'm sure this post might be of interest to the readers of this blog.
You can find all the information about it here.