February 8, 2021

Violence: fourth PARSE biennial research conference

PARSE Journal at the University of Gothenburg

Salad Hilowle, Natdragande Morian,  2020.

Violence: The fourth PARSE biennial research conference at the Faculty of Fine, Applied and Performing Arts, University of Gothenburg, Sweden takes place November 17-19, 2021.

Call for contributions:
Violence is (a) sensitive matter. Intensive and consuming. A fact of life, and yet heavily fictioned. For some, it is a human universal, embedded and affecting; shaping history, delimiting social structures and even determining planetary fate. Contrastingly for others, violence is itself this universalizing discourse of colonial-modernity. For some violence exposes injustices and asymmetries. It is the utterance and resistance of the oppressed. Others construe violence as the essential logic of all relations, the foundation of the social. While violence may pervade the lived experiences of all, it surely does so in ways that are differentiated in valency, intensity and outcome.

Representation of violence is ubiquitous. Representation itself is often understood as a primary matrix of violence. Digital networks relay violent events instantaneously; artistic practices often seek to disclose the psycho-social experience of violence. These forms may be seen to extend or redistribute the force and logic of violence. The ethical demand to bear witness is tempered by the challenge to disclose violence without reproducing it. Representation may disclose violence as a semiotic field with its own modes of enunciation. Some propose a limit to representation in genocidal violence while others believe that we properly touch violence through the non-discursive. Divergent figurations of violence—as utterance from elided histories and subaltern lives; as limit or logic of representation; as materiality—shape different enquiries.

This conference invites contributions addressing the question of violence in different formats—panels, performances, events, screenings and discussions—and proposes an encounter between contemporary artistic research and other domains of enquiry.

Conference strands:

Where to begin with unfolding the artistic language of violence as aesthesis? What practices register the intimacies of violence, its reverberations in bodily and psychic memories? What aesthetic forms seek to capture the politics of violence? How to register what lies in the folds of the relationship between histories of the colonizer and the colonized, between victims and aggressors and, between the oppressed and oppressor?

Can violent means be justified in order to radically confront and change the urgent and stark realities of environmental collapse? This strand proposes to unpack the legacy of imperialist violences perpetrated against and upon the planet, and the potential role of transdisciplinary research and practices that are confronting, critiquing and re/designing this narrative of violence.

This strand focuses on the multiple meanings and experiences of the body in its entangled relation to art, performance and the current states of the world and its connection to violence. Contributions in any disciplinary forms are welcomed which speak or act or perform from bodies and embodied agencies in relation to histories, memories, structural and social regulation, resistance, conflict and reconciliation.

Ear-splitting sonic ruptures and technologies in conflict; the memory of a steel brush across a woven fabric; traces of physical distortion, turmoil, dissonance and collapse; evidence of obsolete rigidity and rebellious divergence. This strand welcomes performative, discursive and speculative proposals that explore crafted materiality. How does violence vibrate or radiate through the visual, haptic, auditory and spatial? What are the codes entangled in a textile or musical passage—the correlations, the objectives and, importantly, the images they are assumed to accommodate?

State Violence as Practice
Inviting academic, artistic and design research on the material culture and techniques of state violences. Weber, after Bodin and Hobbes, asserts ”physical force is specific and intrinsic to the state.” However, biopolitics/necropolitics describe apparatuses and imaginaries that exceed discourses of representation, legitimacy and sovereignty, attending to the technical regimes of practice.

Call for abstracts deadline: April 19, 2021, click here to submit.

All queries to: parse [​at​]

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