Appel de conférences – « Musical Retrofuturism in the 21st Century Symposium » – 31 mai 2022

Appel de conférences pour le « Musical Retrofuturism in the 21st Century Symposium », en ligne, 18-19 août 2022

« Vaporwave, synthwave, and chiptune are just some of the many recent ‘microgenres’ of popular music that take inspiration from the past, particularly the 1980s and 1990s. They share a renewed embrace of cassette tapes, early video games, synthesizers, VHS, early Internet aesthetics, and outmoded computing technology. And yet these genres simultaneously display a fascination with the possibilities of technological progress, toying with utopia and dystopia in equal measure.

This symposium brings such questions together under the rubric of ‘retrofuturism’—a term that denotes an embrace not simply of the past, but of lost sensations and the anachronistic / futuristic visions associated with a particular era. Following scholars such as Georgina Born, Mark Fisher, and Fredric Jameson, we want to ask why these strange Internet-mediated musics emerged during the first decades of the 21st century. What was it that caused this widespread nostalgia wave around the globe? What does this music signify and/or achieve in our current world of socio-political and ecological crisis ? What are the differences and commonalities between these various generic expressions of retrofuturism ? And what might all this have to do with what Shoshana Zuboff has called ‘surveillance capitalism’?

And what might all this have to do with what Shoshana Zuboff has called ‘surveillance capitalism’? We are interested in papers relating, but not exclusive, to:

   – Genres (and genre theory) encompassing:
      – Vaporwave / eccojams / mallsoft / etc.
      – Future funk
      – Synthwave / outrun
      – Chillwave
      – Chiptune
      – Hypnagogic pop
      – Plunderphonics
   – The politics and poetics of nostalgia
   – Internet utopianism
   – Cultural pessimism and melancholia
   – Kitsch and the uncanny
   – Obsolete and residual media
   – Democratic technology and prosumership
   – Youth, age, and cultural memory
   – Online musical subculture

We welcome proposals for individual papers (20 minutes, with 10 minutes for questions after each paper). »

Date limite de soumission (résumé de 200 mots à envoyer à musicalretrofuturism(a)gmail.com) : 31 mai 2022

Pour plus d’informations, communiquer avec les organisateurs : Michiel Kamp (m.kamp1(a)uu.nl) ou Ross Cole (r.cole(a)leeds.ac.uk).


ISSN : 2368-7061
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