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The Power of Failure: New Perspectives in Social Theory and Practice
Poland, Warsaw, 7-8 May 2018
See also CfP for mini-workshop “The Effects of Macroeconomic Failure in Intimate Life and Gender Relations“. Organizer and coordinator: Ignazia M. Bartholini (University of Palermo)
Call for Papers
The last decade crises, which emerged in such diverse domains as humanitarian, economic and political, challenged the sociological imagination to take up the phenomenon of failure and to give it a fresher look. Various issues were addressed, such as the possibility to predict failure, the modalities of coping with it, the attribution of responsibility, the dynamic of scapegoating, the reproduction of the institutional structures and power differential subsequent to episodes of crises and decline, and even the unexpected turning of failure into success in certain instances. The perspective changed accordingly from the micro level – wherein the dynamic of organizational and market failure was attentively scrutinized – to the macro level – in which the potential of these episodes of crisis and failure to effect the capitalist dynamics and the hierarchies of the globalized world was called into question.
All this sociological effervescence can be framed as, more or less consciously, spinning around the following major questions: Can failure be anticipated or predicted? What is the role of ignorance in rendering major episodes of crisis and public policy failure as unanticipated? What is the relation between failure and social change? In what conditions do episodes of failure effect social change? Even more, when is the social change so comprehensive that social actors consider that the episode or succession of failure/s unexpectedly resulted in success?
What renders these inquiries as sociologically ‘major’ is less the fact that they emerged in relation with episodes of crisis, but that these can, in fact, be addressed in relation to any domain or social activity, related or unrelated to the recently witnessed episodes of failure at a global scale. The power of failure to effect (or not) social change and to lead (or not) to success is an issue that goes beyond the visible manifestation of power games between major financial, political and economic actors. The power of failure concerns in fact the social life in its entirety. And although the major and spectacular episodes of failure and crisis are ‘needed’ in order to render this power obvious and to call attention to it, the fact of the matter is that the power of failure does not need such a grandiose arena to manifest.
For this reason, the Workshop proposes to depart from the conventional manner of discussing failure and the power of failure as something out of the ordinary and paradoxical, and to bring in contributions which deal with this topic in terms of everyday life and practice. The Workshop welcomes contributions dealing with such topics as:
- Sources and types of failure
- Possibility to predict failure
- Instituionalization and rhetoric of failure as something unanticipated and unexpected
- Recovery and coping mechanisms in practice
- Engagement in projects that involve high risk of failure
- Prophylactics and ignorance of failure
- Failure as stumbling block vs Failure as stepping stone to success
- From failure to success: everyday life and beyond
- Sociologists of failure, sociology of failure
- Analysis of failure and unintended consequences in social sciences
The Organizing Committee hopes the Workshop will contribute to the conceptual, theoretical and empirical enrichment of the studies on sociology of failure and recovery, it will create an apt platform for revisiting well established assumptions and paradigms, and help opening new research sites for empirical investigation.
The deadline for submission of abstracts is 15 December 2017.
CALL FOR PAPERS
From June 6 to 9, 2018 will take place in Bergamo (Italy) the 7th Conference of Ethnography and Qualitative Research, organized by the University of Bergamo in cooperation with the journal “Etnografia e ricerca qualitativa” and the Italian publisher Il Mulino.
Pietro Saitta (University of Messina) solicits contributions, for the following workshop:
The Intimate Life of Power
The present call for papers solicits either ethnographic or qualitative contributions that deal with the theme of the intimate life of power, highlighting aspects related to everyday life as well as the ideology of the upper classes caught in the system of relations within their group as well as in the “interplays” that connect them to the lower classes. Methodological contributions, based both on primary research accounts and secondary data, that reflect on the problems of access to social spheres characterized by asymmetries working against researchers, are also encouraged.
Deadlines and submissions:
For further information and for a detailed description of the session:
British Association for Applied Linguistics (B.A.A.L)/ Routledge Workshop Programme 2017
Date: 18–19 January 2018
Venue: Glasgow University
Theme: Cognitive Approaches to Language in Education
The purpose of this workshop is to explore what recent research in the field of cognitive linguistics can offer education. Departing from traditional and functional approaches to language, cognitive linguistics provides teachers a unique way of exploring meaning and the relationship between thought and language. Recent research shows that applying a cognitive perspective in the classroom has very clear benefits for all teachers interested in literacy. However, as this is a relatively new field, the parameters have not yet been fully agreed upon by linguists. Therefore, this event is a step towards achieving more clarity and consensus, as well as offering established researchers, ECRs, postgraduate researchers and those interested in embarking on research in this area a space in which to discuss how a research agenda might be usefully taken forward.
BAAL non-member £35
BAAL member £30
Student £25 This will include lunch and refreshments.
Registration is open and tickets can be purchased through:
The main event will take place on Friday 19 January, with an afternoon networking session for ECRs and PGRs on 18 January 3–5 p.m.
Dr Wendy Anderson University of Glasgow
Dr Ellen Bramwell University of Glasgow
Professor Alice Deignan University of Leeds
Dr Marcello Giovanelli Aston University
Professor Jeannette Littlemore University of Birmingham
Dr Jessica Mason Sheffield Hallam University
Professor Elena Semino Lancaster University
Seminar co-ordinators:: Sally Zacharias, Dr Agnes Marszalek and Dr Marcello Giovanelli
Closing Date: Tuesday 1 May 2018
The African Critical Inquiry Programme invites proposals from scholars and/or practitioners in public cultural institutions in South Africa to organize a workshop to take place in 2019. The African Critical Inquiry Programme (ACIP) seeks to advance inquiry and debate about the roles and practice of public culture, public cultural institutions and public scholarship in shaping identities and society in Africa. The ACIP is committed to collaboration between scholars and the makers of culture/history, and to fostering inquiry into the politics of knowledge production, the relationships between the colonial/apartheid and the postcolonial/postapartheid, and the importance of critical pluralism as against nationalist discourse. ACIP is a partnership between the Centre for Humanities Research at the University of the Western Cape and the Laney Graduate School of Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia (USA).
ACIP Workshops are intended as annual occasions to identify and address critical themes, fundamental questions and pressing practical issues concerning public culture. For instance, Workshops might focus on particular questions and issues related to publics, visuality, museums and exhibitions, art, performance, or representational or institutional forms from diverse methodological, practical, and theoretical vantages. They might examine forms and practices of public scholarship and the theories, histories and systems of thought that shape and illuminate public culture and public scholarship. Workshops should encourage comparative, interdisciplinary and cross-institutional interchange and reflection that bring into conversation public scholarship in Africa, creative cultural production, and critical theory. Workshop budgets will vary depending on proposed plans; the maximum award is ZAR 60,000.
Workshop Themes and Formats: Working with a different focus each year, the ACIP Workshop will facilitate and energize conversations among scholars and practitioners drawn from universities, museums, and other cultural organizations, seeking to bridge institutional silos and boundaries. The ACIP Workshop should help place research and public scholarship within broader frames, work against institutional isolation, facilitate collaborative research relations and discussions, and build a cohort of scholars and practitioners who talk across fields, across generations, and across institutions. Proposed Workshops will be selected with an eye to cultivating these goals.
Proposed Workshop themes should focus on issues and questions that foster critical examination and debate about forms, practices and institutions of public culture. Themes should be addressed from multiple orientations and disciplines and include comparative perspectives. Workshops should be planned to engage participants across different institutions of public culture, including universities, museums, arts and culture organizations, NGOs or others appropriate to the topic.
Abstracts for previously funded ACIP Workshops are available here.
The Workshop might use a range of formats as appropriate. Examples of formats that might be proposed or combined:
- a standard workshop of 2-3 days, with specific sessions, presentations, discussants, pre-circulated papers or readings, etc. Variations on this format might also be introduced. Preferred timing for such workshops is March 2019.
- a working group of colleagues and postgraduate students drawn from across institutions that meet regularly over several weeks or months to discuss common readings and work in progress; visitors who work on the group’s central theme and issues might be invited to give public lectures, participate in group meetings, mentor students, etc.
- a collaborative teaching programme with a common postgraduate course, or module of a course, taught in parallel at different universities with various modes of coordination and interaction, with participants coming together for a 1 day workshop at the end.
- a distinguished scholar or cultural practitioner invited as a short-term Public Scholar in Residence (PSR) to bring fresh, comparative perspectives to particular issues and debates through public lectures, participation in a standard workshop, consultations with colleagues at institutions of public culture, and meetings with students supported by ACIP’s Ivan Karp Doctoral Research Awards. The visitor might also contribute to courses as appropriate.
Workshop organizers will work through the Centre for Humanities Research (CHR) at the University of the Western Cape for basic financial administration and are responsible for complying with CHR policies. Workshop organizers should submit a letter from the host institution, centre, programme, or department confirming that appropriate administrative and institutional support will be available.
We ask Workshop organizers to incorporate appropriate modes of participation for postgraduate students holding current Ivan Karp Doctoral Research Awards from ACIP so that they have opportunities to consult with Workshop participants. Prior holders of Ivan Karp awards may also wish to attend and we encourage organizers to include students from a range of higher education institutions.
Who Should Apply: Applications may be submitted by experienced scholars and cultural practitioners based in universities, museums, and other cultural organizations in South Africa who are interested in creating or reinvigorating interdisciplinary, cross-institutional engagement and understanding and who are committed to training the next generations of scholar-practitioners. Applications may be submitted by a single individual or a pair of individuals who have different institutional affiliations and bring different perspectives, approaches or specializations to the proposed Workshop theme.
How to Apply:
Interested applicants should submit the following as a single file attachment with documents in the order listed:
- completed cover sheet (at http://www.gs.emory.edu/about/special/acip.html)
- abstract of the proposed Workshop theme, focus and plan (250 word max.)
- two to three page statement defining the proposed Workshop theme and focus, its significance, the questions and issues it addresses, and how it relates to the African Critical Inquiry Programme. The statement should also describe the Workshop format and why it will be effective.
- list of proposed participants with their affiliations, brief bios and descriptions of how their work relates to the Workshop
- plan of work and schedule for organizing the Workshop
- preliminary Workshop budget that explains and justifies expenses
- two page curriculum vitae (for each organizer)
- an institutional letter of commitment to host the Workshop. Please describe available administrative and logistical support in this letter and/or your work plan
- two reference letters addressing the significance of the proposed Workshop and appropriateness of the format and plan should be submitted directly to the Selection Committee.
The Workshop theme description and plan of work should specify topics or sessions to be included, address the nature and value of the interdisciplinary and cross-institutional exchange to be undertaken, and indicate whether particular outcomes or products are envisioned. It should be written in a way that will be accessible to non-specialist reviewers.
Each Workshop may apply for up to ZAR 60,000. to support Workshop activities and planning. Applicants need not apply for the full amount. Funds may be used to pay honoraria, cover out of town participants’ travel costs, purchase materials, establish a website, promote Workshop activities, hire a student assistant to help with organization, and cover other related expenses. Workshops are strongly encouraged to supplement the ACIP funding with other sources of support.
Selection Criteria: All proposals will be reviewed by the ACIP Selection Committee; successful applicants will be notified as soon as possible after the closing date so they may begin planning for the Workshop. Applications will be evaluated on the following criteria:
Conceptualization: Does the proposed Workshop identify and address significant themes, questions and issues concerning the roles and practices of public culture, public cultural institutions and various forms of public scholarship in shaping identities and society in Africa? Does it combine disciplines and create cross- institutional conversations in new and/or interesting ways? How are comparative dimensions incorporated into the Workshop? How will the proposed Workshop develop cross-generational relations and conversations? Will the Workshop make possible new forms of knowledge, innovative approaches, or new kinds of exchange?
Appropriateness: Does the proposed Workshop theme relate to questions and issues relevant to African Critical Inquiry? Are the Workshop plan and proposed set of participants appropriate, well thought out, and likely to be productive?
Workshop organizer(s): What qualifications and experience do applicants bring to organizing the Workshop, including previous administration/organization and interdisciplinary and cross-institutional engagements? How do the training, backgrounds and approaches of a pair of applicants complement one another in formulating Workshop plans?
Impact: Will the proposed Workshop and design be effective in addressing the theme and foster interdisciplinary, cross-institutional, and cross-generational debate and engagement?
Applicants who organize an African Critical Inquiry Programme Workshop must acknowledge the support in all Workshop materials and in any publications that result and indicate affiliation with ACIP and the Centre for Humanities Research.
After completing the workshop, they must submit a final report and a financial report.
Closing date: Applications and referees’ letters must be received by Tuesday 1 May 2018. Incomplete applications will not be considered.
Please submit materials as a single file attachment with documents in the order listed above. Applications should be sent by email with the heading “ACIP 2019 Workshop Proposal” to [email protected]
Supported by funding from the Ivan Karp and Corinne Kratz Fund