CfP: “Punk NOW!!” (Birmingham City University)

Punk Scholars Network 2nd Annual Conference and Postgraduate Symposium:
“Punk NOW!!”
End of October 2015 / beginning of November 2015 – Birmingham City University
Deadline: 31st June 2015

Punk Scholars Network 2nd Annual Conference and Postgraduate Symposium in Association with Birmingham City University, The Birmingham Centre for Media and Cultural Research and the London College of Communication. The conference is scheduled to take place at Birmingham City University either the end of October 2015 or the beginning of November 2015. Exact dates will be confirmed later.

Following the dynamic emergence of punk in the UK, USA and Europe in the 1970s, the subculture spread widely. As punk and new wave gained commercial and critical success, together with an attractive notoriety, it soon began an ongoing journey around the globe – both as a product and as an ideology. Punk, then, despite its omnipresence in contemporary underground and popular cultures, is clearly more than legacy music. More than forty years after the proto-punk progenitors of Detroit and New York unconsciously launched an underground revolution, to continue what some of the 60’s and 70’s anarchic counter culture propagated, and after untold premature obituaries, it appears that punk – in terms of music, philosophy, and identity – remains in rude health.

Punk scenes continue to thrive as far afield as Russia, South America, India, Pakistan, China, Japan, Eastern Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Indonesia – 2011 saw the first official record release from a Saudi Arabian punk band, Sound of Ruby, while other scenes have established their mark in Madagascar, Algeria, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, even Tibet and the Himalayas. Meanwhile, nearer to home, an underground punk scene never actually went away and continues to ‘mutate and survive’– ranging from the continued support for longstanding bands and scenes, to the network of emerging small-scale gigs, fanzines, music distribution, (sub)cultural and political activities of a truly cross-generational subculture.

This joint conference and postgraduate symposium seeks to illuminate the current landscape of contemporary punk in all of its global, musical, political and (sub) cultural manifestations. Suggested topics include (but are not limited to)

  • International/national contemporary punk scenes and networks
  • Contemporary punk and politics
  • Contemporary punk and gender
  • Subcultural scenes, tribes and neo-tribes informed/influenced by punk
  • Contemporary punk identity
  • The Design and Aesthetics of Contemporary Punk
  • Contemporary punk fanzines and digital publishing
  • Ageing in a contemporary punk scene
  • The old and the new; inter/intra generational scenes, retro scenes, controversy and tensions.
  • Fan practices in contemporary punk;
  • Contemporary punk as resistance
  • Contemporary punk music: Musicology, performance, new genres and=
    hybridization
  • Punk commodities and consumerism: From the role of the boutique to the online punk distro
  • Contemporary punk and digital media; digital production, distribution and consumption. DiY media, YouTube, social media.
  • Punk for Sale: New genres and hybrid musical developments in punk musical aesthetics

The programme will consist of keynote speakers (tbc) and a number of thematically grouped panels for both academics and postgraduates. By creating a dual purpose to the conference the Punk Scholars Network aims to bring together established academics and the next generation of punk scholars in a supportive and colloquial environment, which we hope will encourage networking opportunities, ideas exchange and potential future research collaborations.

Post graduates and graduates can present work-in-progress papers on their PhD thesis, Master’s dissertation or graduate dissertation.

Alongside this the organisers plan to have an art exhibition exploring the visual identity of contemporary punk and live music from Birmingham’s resilient punk scene. Each paper should last no more than 20 minutes and proposals should be submitted in the form of an abstract of c.250 words. All proposal submissions should also include:

  • Full title of the paper
  • Full name, contact details, 150 word biography and institutional affiliation
  • Your academic status-post graduate/graduate or ‘established’ academic (this is for the purpose of panel allocation)
  • Any requirements (projector, CD/DVD player, OHP, etc)

Deadline for receipt of proposals/abstracts is 31st June 2015
Proposals should be sent in the form of an abstract as an e-mail attachment to matt.grimes@bcu.ac.uk

The conference programme will be announced in September 2015.
It is intended that a book of conference proceedings will published

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