Hinterlands of Media and Technology
October 27-28, 2022 | Hybrid Conference, New York and Online
Keynote: Professor Wendy Chun, Simon Fraser University
May 1, 2022 Extended to May 13, 2022
What is peripheral and yet indispensable to media and technology production? What networks and relations may be obscured or revealed if we interrogate the constitution of the center? For the 2022 Neil Postman Graduate Conference, we focus on the centrality of the ‘elsewhere’ and the ‘otherwise’ in the production of media experiences and media technologies. To consider the many historical, geographic, economic, and material dynamics at play, we center our inquiry around the notion of the hinterlands, and invite contributions to the question: What and where are the hinterlands of media and technology?
Hinterlands are traditionally conceived as the places which supply the city, port, or metropole but which lie beyond them. Unseen, opaque, and obscure from the vantage of the center, these places are the constitutive outside without which more central worlds and more visible or overt mediations could not exist or take place. What lands, bodies, labor, and knowledge are transformed by these processes? How are groups, communities, and nations that play a central role in developing and generating media and technology excluded in their design, intended use, and distribution? How are the rural and the outskirts conceptually, politically, culturally and geographically mediated? How do new technological forms such as digital databases, algorithmic recommendation, and artificial intelligence reproduce social and spatial differences? What other forms of “elsewhere” could we consider when conceptualizing the hinterlands?
For this year’s conference, we welcome paper presentations, posters, and creative projects that engage broadly with the concept of “hinterlands” and its connection to media and technology. Early-stage projects are welcome. Topics might include, but are not limited to:
- Historical or contemporary studies of colonial and decolonial media relations
- Media and technology’s exclusion or discrimination against marginalized communities
- Rural media (practices and cultures; access and connectivity)
- The environmental impacts or local manufacturing contexts of media technology
- Accumulation, extraction, and monetization in the creative industries or in the tech industry
- Marginal, censored, or unauthorized and yet productive forms of media practice
- Phenomena beyond the traditional boundaries of media studies itself, but central to its construction
Please submit a 300-350 word abstract (PDF only) and any supporting media via this application form along with your bio (max. 100 words – to be filled out in the form directly) by May 13, 2022.
Poster Presentations will be held on the evening of Thursday, October 27th and Paper/Non-Traditional Media Presentations will be held as panels on Friday, October 28th.
The conference will be a hybrid event with an in-person component at NYU and support for remote attendance and presentations. Please indicate your preferred mode in the application form.