CFP Difference & Globalization

Call for papers
Visual Communication Journal
Co-edited by GIORGIA AIELLO (University of Leeds) and LUC PAUWELS (University of Antwerp)

This special issue investigates the nexus of globalization and visual communication through a rich discussion of the significance of national, racial, gendered, classed, countercultural, embodied and emplaced identities-among others. It will interrogate a variety of visual communication texts and contexts, including but not limited to those found in popular and consumer culture, web design, social media, advertising, photography, branding and public communication, tourism and urban place-making.

The visual is an especially privileged and in fact crucial mode of communication in contexts of globalization thanks to its perceptual availability and cross-cultural potential. The rise of global capitalism has been overwhelmingly associated with the increasing ‘loss’ of difference in cultural production. As a central issue in global interconnectivity, the key tension between homogenization and heterogenization has generated interest and apprehension over the preservation and disappearance of difference across cultures. Less attention has been given to how cultural and social difference may be mobilized for symbolic and material profit in global(izing) communication contexts, while also being a significant factor in the production and reception of texts. Although a critique of globalization as a homogenizing process is important and based on compelling evidence, it is therefore necessary to account for the increasingly complex, powerful and indeed heterogeneous ways in which contemporary communication is realized in everyday life.

We invite both article and visual essay submissions that address one or more of the following questions:

= What do theoretical, critical and/or empirical approaches to social or cultural difference and diversity contribute to visual communication scholarship on key processes of globalization?

= How can contemporary discussions of key articulations of difference and globalization (e.g. transnationalism, postcolonialism, cosmopolitanism) be enhanced by visual communication scholarship?

= What are some of the major ways in which global visual communication texts integrate, mobilize and/or exploit fundamental dimensions of social and cultural difference (such as race, gender, sexuality, class, nationality, political and religious beliefs, etc.)?

= What processes, forms of understanding, and practices are typical or required of designers’ work in the planning and production of visuals that aim to communicate generic meanings or, on the other hand, key forms of social and cultural difference to either global/cross-cultural or local/ specific publics?

= What are viewers’ culturally or socially specific experiences of global or cross-cultural visual communication and how do their unique ‘ways of seeing’ impact the ‘reading’ of globalization?

Please send an extended 1,000 word abstract of your proposed article or visual essay describing the focus and content of the proposed contribution to GIORGIA AIELLO, G.Aiello AT, by 31 March 2013.

Proposals will undergo a review process, and a selection will be shortlisted for development into full-length articles or visual essays. Shortlisted authors must commit to a timeline for revision, resubmission and publication, with full manuscripts to be submitted by 1 October 2013.

Author: Center for Intercultural Dialogue

Wendy Leeds-Hurwitz, the Director of the Center for Intercultural Dialogue, manages this website.

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