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Popkongress 2019: Popular Articulations – Articulations of the Popular

Posted: September 25th, 2018 | Filed under: Calls for Papers | No Comments »

11th Annual Meeting of the AG Populärkultur und Medien Gesellschaft für Medienwissenschaft (GfM)
Universität Passau
Lehrstuhl für Deutsche Sprachwissenschaft Prof. Dr. Rüdiger Harnisch

14–16 February 2019

Generally speaking, the term ‘articulation’ stands for a way of expressing something and represents how a particular expression is applied. In addition, the term is used in different scientific communities. For example, in phonetics it refers to the actions that produce spoken sounds. In music, the use of the term ‘articulation’ relates back to phonetics because with the help of musical articulation different sounds can be separated from each other, allowing the music to speak. Finally, articulations can also be understood as part of social and pop cultural praxis.

These examples show the huge potential of the term ‘articulation’, which stands at the centre of the 11th annual meeting of the AG Populärkultur at the University of Passau. In addition, the conference will be open to further definitions and interpretations of the term, which – in the sense of ‘expressing something’ – can represent all language- and non-language-based forms of expression as well as social practices. Therefore, various approaches to linguistic and non-linguistic topics, social phenomena and their influences on popular culture are welcome. In accordance with the traditions of the GfM-AG Populärkultur und Medien, all forms of popular articulations and articulations of the popular, especially within the media context (e.g. in language, music, and image) and their interactions and reflections which have an impact on social communication, are considered in this field of research.

One the one hand, ‘Articulations of the Popular’ can be connected to phenomena of popular culture which relate to spoken (e.g. talks, interviews, press conferences, reports, comments) or written language (e.g. heavy metal dots). They are also expressed through musical parameters (e.g. sound, melody, harmonies, rhythm) and through visual expression (e.g. photos, videos, film, projections, graffiti, comics etc.). Furthermore, ‘Articulations of the Popular’ are also actions in which the popular is reflected in its own way (e.g. in various genres such as the Western). This could lead to discussions when the popular articulates itself as a quotation in a new setting (e.g., in pop literature texts which are not regarded as popular in the sense of bestsellers, or by the term ‘Cool Fun’ within the genre ‘postdramatisches Theater’).

On the other hand, the term ‘Popular Articulations’ refers to very specific ‘texts’, which can be language- or non-language-based and have the potential for media attention and strong connections to ‘everyday life’ (e.g. slogans, keywords, famous melodies or semiotic symbols and logos). ‘Popular Articulations’ are also operations that are popular in the meaning of ‘well known’ and morph into popular spheres (e.g. Bavarian politician Edmund Stoiber’s famous speech which served as a base for a musical track composed by Johnny König).

Overall, the topic raises multiple questions in the context of popular culture and media studies which could deal with – but are not limited to – the following aspects:

  • The acrobatic use of language in vocal music (e.g. Bobby McFerrin, Fu-Schnickens, Diamanda Galás)
  • Different forms of vocal articulations within various musical genres (e.g. toasting, growling)
  • Announcements on TV and radio or announcements during music performances
  • The mixing of different languages on the international level
  • The creation of neologisms
  • Body language (e.g. shoegazer, devil horns, gang signs)
  • The analysis of word choice and dialects (e.g. in the genre of the German ‘Heimatfilm’) or the sentence structure of popular characters (e.g. Yoda in Star Wars)
  • Translations (e.g. in the motion picture Bienvenue chez les Ch’tis)
  • The choice of voice actors for dubbing a film
  • Linguistic characteristics of certain actors or singers and those who parody them
  • The choice of actors with certain voices for specific speaking roles (e.g. in audiobooks)
  • Articulations (e.g. Trapattoni: „Ich habe fertig!“), which have had a long-term influence on everyday language
  • Social praxis as an articulation of popular culture

The Lehrstuhl für Deutsche Sprachwissenschaft at the Universität Passau (Prof. Dr. Rüdiger Harnisch), the conference organizer (Dr. André Rottgeri) und the Sprecher*innen of the AG Populärkultur (Prof. Dr. Barbara Hornberger, Dr. Charis Goer and Dr. Mario Anastasiadis) are pleased to send out their invitation to the 11th annual meeting of the AG in Passau. This interdisciplinary conference welcomes researchers from all disciplines that deal with different expressions connected to the field. Proposals which relate to the conference topic can be submitted in German or in English.

Proposals for the following formats will be taken into consideration:

  • Single presentations (20 minutes of presentation + 10 minutes for questions)
  • Proposals for panels, which should be submitted for the group by a panel organizer
  • Posters, which will be displayed throughout the conference
  • Proposals for alternative formats are also welcome!

Membership in the AG or GfM is not required in order to participate. During the conference, the general assembly of the AG will also take place. In addition, an integrated Work&Progress-Panel is also part of the event. The CfP for this event can be found on the next page.

We encourage interested researchers to send in an abstract of 300 words (including 3 keywords and 3–5 references) in .doc format along with a short biography of approximately 150 words to the following address: [email protected] by 30 September 2018. We will inform participants by 15 November 2018 of the decisions. Information regarding travel and catering will be made available at a later date on the conference homepage www.phil.uni-passau.de/popkongress2019.

Please direct all questions about the event to: Dr. André Rottgeri [email protected]

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