Call for Papers

Anglistica AION. An Interdisciplinary Journal

Call for Papers

Indigenous Resistance in the Digital Age: The Politics of Language, Media and Culture
Editors Bronwyn Carlson and Anna Mongibello

Over the last decades, the advent of digital and social media has deeply affected and radically transformed the interplay between politics, communication and new technologies. This has had a major impact on how engagement and participation take place in the digital age. The new cyber territories that we inhabit daily involve different configurations of digital communication and social practices, which change significantly on the basis of cultural contexts of interaction, interaction spaces, and semiotic resources. This is even more true when it comes to Indigenous communities across the globe, whose widening use of new media has become “a creative and empowering tool to combat language death, raise political awareness, and ingeniously create Indigenous networks across various geographies” (Menjívar and Chacón 2019: 11).

As Ahasiw Maskegon-Iskwew, founder of Drumbeats to Drumbytes, highlighted, “the digital realm provides Indigenous communities with an autonomous platform to assert an online presence in the face of colonial catastrophe” (2005). For instance, Indigenous digital activism in response to social and political injustices has reclaimed counter-discursive spaces of resistance in the cybersphere, entering the public arena with digital movements such as #idlenomore (Mongibello 2018), #SOSBLAKAUSTRALIA and #IndigenousDads (Carlson 2019) as well as Facebook posts, Instagram stories, Twitter hashtags, YouTube videos, blogs etc. Indigenous digital media innovators are using Web 2.0 technologies in highly creative digital projects such as CyberPowWow and Aboriginal Territories in Cyberspace.

Such movements, projects and forms of individual digital activism resist power, domination and control by interrogating contemporary colonizing systems and subverting the mainstream narrative of the ‘unmodern Indian’ along with other stereotypes (LaRocque 2010, 2016). New dynamic forms of Indigenous self-determination and network sovereignty (Duarte 2017) through social media, in particular, allow Indigenous people to “agitate, demand political recognition for Indigenous causes, and proffer contesting and challenging views that dismantle colonial preoccupations with Indigenous political unity” (Carlson and Frazer 2016). Indigenous communities are therefore carving out a space for themselves as full participants in the shaping of the cybersphere (Lewis 2016). 

In this scenario, the special issue of Anglistica AION aims at widening the current critical debate on Indigenous resistance in digital environments so as to include a combination of theoretical approaches and methodologies that range from Indigenous Studies, Critical Discourse Analysis, Corpus Linguistics, Multimodal Analysis, Media Studies, Social Media Studies, among others, that may offer new perspectives and insights. We welcome empirical papers that investigate specific forms of Indigenous digital activism as counter-discourse, analyzing the linguistic and semiotic practices of resistance across channels and cyber-environments. The editors are particularly interested in the linguistic and discursive dimensions of this phenomenon. The areas of inquiry include, but are not limited to: 

  • Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social networks as new frontiers for Indigenous activists
  • Corpora, annotation schemes and other resources and methods for analyzing Indigenous resistance
  • Linguistic, multimodal, critical analysis of dissent and online struggles
  • Metaphors, tropes, narratives and other devices used in Indigenous digital activism on social media
  • Language, memory and Indigeneity in virtual worlds
  • Sovereignty, Indigenous lands and the cyberspace
  • Online/offline Indigenous self-representations and their multiple expressions
  • Responses to online anti-Indigenous racism
  • Indigenous (self- and other) representations in video-games
  • Contemporary online Indigeneity and global connectivity
  • Indigenous knowledge, artificial intelligence and digital worlds
  • Technology and decolonization
  • Emancipatory role of digital technology for Indigenous people
  • Data, information, connectivity, digital technologies and control
  • Educational technology (e.g., virtual labs, e-learning, mobile apps) for Indigenous languages revitalization
  • Indigenous online voices and political participation
  • Ancestral languages and cultural heritage in online environments
  • The inclusion of Indigenous viewpoints in developing new technologies
  • Innovative forms of digital oratory and storytelling

Deadline for abstracts: February 11, 2022
Notification of acceptance: February 25, 2022
Deadline for completed articles: May 30, 2022

Send an abstract of about 300 words to Bronwyn Carlson bronwyn.carlson@mq.edu.au and Anna Mongibello amongibello@unior.it, CC anglistica@unior.it

 

Living in the Age of Anger: Representing ‘negative solidarities’ in Contemporary Global Culture
Editors Rossella Ciocca and Sabita Manian

When in 2017 Pankaj Mishra published The Age of Anger: A History of the Present, he verbalized an iconic title for a shared condition of our global contemporaneity. In articulating the widespread sense of general angst and resentment, Mishra re-investigated notions of traditional political theorizing in order to connect  the “unprecedented  political, economic and social disorder that accompanied the rise of the industrial capitalist economy” to a much more perplexing present of new holy wars and ideological crusades that left few democracies untouched. The notion of a political party as a sect of true believers associated with rejuvenated forms of nihilistic political violence and parochial chauvinism are now indeed infecting much vaster geopolitical realities and wider strata of population, thereby enunciating locally waves of loathing and fear, shaping national and international forms of right-wing extremism and/or religious fundamentalism and terrorism.

Within national borders, neoliberal schemes of ruthless economic competition and free enterprise rhetoric create exasperated expectancies of individual self-distinction and economic realization fostering more often than not bitter feelings of resentment, disappointment and frustration. The universalization of the culture of individualism has led to a frenetic pace of ever-accelerating rugged competition, and a clamorous, vociferous public sphere where social media accentuates deeply humiliating social hierarchies – reflecting the ever-widening gap between the haves and the have-nots – thus catalyzing a toxic mix of anomie and sectarianism. 

All over the world, forms of ‘negative solidarity’ (Arendt, Men in Dark Times, 1968) - a concept also evoked by sociologist, Emile Durkheim - manifests itself with local adaptations. It has traveled transnationally, and paradoxically prospered due to the weakening of national sovereignties in which the severe limits of the impoverished welfare state, unable to dispel the generalized perception of insecurity and sense of disposability, produces systemic mistrust in personal agency and a correlated thirst for ‘problem-solving’ authoritarianism. The challenges posed by refugees and immigrants to the bulwarks of citizenship, national culture and identity tends to make some individuals more prone to inventing scapegoats (e.g., intellectuals, elites, minorities such as Muslims, women, Blacks, Jews, and even mainstream politicians) for their real or imagined problems. Even the threat of global climate change, instead of inspiring cooperative action, tends to generate blind forms of social anxiety, pessimism and anti-scientific conspiracy theories.

The very beginning of 2021 saw one of the most striking episodes of this universal crisis of social consensus: on January 6, a mob of Trump’s supporters attacked the US Congress attempting to overturn the result of the 2020 presidential election. Such illiberal trends and negative solidarity have appeared globally - from Brazil to Myanmar, or from Turkey to India. 

This issue of Anglistica, will focus on the aforementioned historical conjunction and contemporary social features leading to the current global variant of ‘negative solidarity,’ and examine the role and manifestations of sociopolitical culture in highlighting, understanding, denouncing, contrasting, mourning the Age of Anger, as represented in literature, film, tv, the performing and visual arts, as well as through other media communication including journalism and historical and political discourse.

We warmly invite contributions on topics including, but not limited to:

 

Religion and anger
Gender and anger
Ethnicity, marginalization and anger
Communalism Vs Community
Isolation and competition
Entrepreneurialism, social greed 
Geo-political fields of tension
Post-imperial melancholies, global fears
Hate-speech and communication
Visualizing terror, representing angst
Storytelling and trauma
Narration as antidote against poisonous socialization 
Literary/artistic forms of activism

Deadline for abstracts  15 November 2021

Notification of acceptance   10 December 2021

Deadline for completed articles 10 February 2022

Send an abstract of about 300 words to rciocca@unior.it and manian@lynchburg.edu

Rossella Ciocca is Professor of English and Anglophone Literatures and Coordinator of the PhD Programme in Literary, Linguistic and Comparative Studies at the University of Naples ‘L’Orientale’. Her publications include volumes on Shakespeare (Il cerchio d’oro. I re sacri nel teatro shakespeariano, 1987; La musica dei sensi. Amore e pulsione nello Shakespeare comico-romantico, 1999). She has translated and edited The Taming of the Shrew and King John for the Bompiani Edition of Shakespeare: The Complete Works. Her more recent research interests include Postcolonial Literature and Theory, Colonial History, South Asian, Diasporic and Indian Literatures, Anglophone Literature of Globalization. Her published works include a volume on the literary representations of otherness from early modern to pre-modernist periods, I volti dell’altro. Saggio sulla diversità (UniorPress, 1990), essays on contemporary South Asian writers, Shakespearean appropriations in the Indian Subcontinent, the Partition of India, the city of Mumbai’s fiction, sustainability and ecocriticism in the Global South. She has edited with Sanjukta Das Gupta, Adivasi Histories, Stories, Visual Arts and Performances (Anglistica AION An Interdisciplinary Journal, 19.1, 2015); with Neelam Srivastava the  volume Indian Literature and The World (Palgrave-Macmillan, 2017) and with Alex Tickell  Millennium’s Children. New Trends in South-Asian Postmillennial Anglophone Literature (Textus, XXXIII, 3, 2020).

Dr. Sabita Manian, PhD, is Associate Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences and Professor of International Relations and Security Studies at the University of Lynchburg, Virginia. She is the recipient of the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Outstanding Faculty Award, the Shirley Rosser Award for Excellence in Teaching and the Thomas Allen Award for Excellence in Advising. Dr. Manian is co-author of Sex Trafficking: A Global Perspective (Rowman & Littlefield, 2010) and has authored dozens of journal articles, book chapters, academic papers and public lectures on identity politics, security and gender politics, ethnic and immigration politics relating to Asia, the Americas and the Mideast. She has presented academic papers nationally and internationally in Argentina, Belize, Belgium, China, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, France, Grenada, Guadeloupe, India, Italy, Morocco and the UK.