Throughout the history of the United States, various media have been employed as mediums of national and international communication. From presidents, to journalists, to civil rights organisations and beyond, visual, textual, and sound media have provided modes by which groups and individuals have conveyed their ideas, beliefs, and understandings about the U.S.
Whether it be books, photographs, paintings, music, films, or a president’s ramblings on Twitter, conflicting and complimentary forms of media have helped make meaning of the “American experience.” Throughout the centuries, events occurring within the United States have captured the attention of both domestic and overseas audiences. Neo-colonial expansion, the Black Freedom Struggle, and America’s wars – along with contemporary issues including Black Lives Matter, #MeToo, and anti-abortion legislation – have inspired local, country-wide, and transnational commentary. Different media genres have played and continue to play a vital role in the diffusion of news and opinions to the nation and to the world. In the fitting setting of the British Library – which houses collections ranging from George III’s personal library, to multi-media sources such as image and sound archives – this conference seeks to understand how the United States has been communicated across mediums and across borders.
The 2019 BAAS Postgraduate Conference invites participants from all disciplines and fields to explore media forms produced by and about America and Americans, both historically and in the present day. How has the United States been described to itself and to the world, and how have internal and overseas citizens responded? How have scholars, activists, politicians, soldiers, or artists sought to represent themselves through different mediums? How have media cultures been utilised by social movements as an agent of change or for the status quo? How has the digital age altered America’s relationship with media forms? What is the role of international actors and networks in cultivating the image of America? This conference invites an interdisciplinary approach to the employment of media as a mode of communication.
Potential topics for papers and panels include, but are not limited to:
• Print and visual culture
• Theatre, music, and performance
• Film and television
• Journalism and photojournalism
• Digital and social medias
• Race and racism
• Ethnicity, migration, and diaspora
• Protest, activism, and social movements
• Dynamics of gender, sex, and sexuality
• Issues of class and labour
• Domestic and international identities
• Images and imaginings of America
• Indigenous communities
• Religion and belief
• Environmental and climate studies
• Memory, memorialization, and commemoration
• Vast Early America
Abstracts for individual papers should be no more than 300 words. Panel proposals should include details of each individual paper, along with a panel description. All submissions are to include the speaker’s name, institutional affiliation, email address, and a short biographical profile. The deadline for submissions is Sunday 8th September. Please submit all applications to firstname.lastname@example.org
BAAS is dedicated to fostering a culture of diversity and inclusion. We will give preference to panels that reflect the diversity of our field in terms of gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and institutional affiliation. Historically women have been disproportionately underrepresented on panels and BAAS is taking positive action, as permitted under s.158 Equality Act 2010, to enable and encourage the participation of women. For this reason all-male panel proposals will not be accepted. BAAS may constitute an all-male panel or other presentation where absolutely necessary (but any such consideration will be other than via the call for papers procedure).
Travel bursaries will be available along with subsidies to support your own childcare provision. Please complete the funding application form, and submit it along with your proposal, if you wish to be considered.
Follow us on Twitter: @baaspgr2019
Co-organisers: Lauren Eglen, University of Nottingham
Tim Galsworthy, University of Sussex