INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE UNIVERSITY OF TROMSØ, 5-8 SEPTEMBER 2012 [version 31 August] María del Mar Azcona session 6B 4 Chiara Brambilla/Holger Pötzsch session 1A 4 Debra Ann Castillo KEYNOTE Wednesday

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INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE UNIVERSITY OF TROMSØ, 5-8 SEPTEMBER 2012 [version 31 August] María del Mar Azcona session 6B 4 Chiara Brambilla/Holger Pötzsch session 1A 4 Debra Ann Castillo KEYNOTE Wednesday 5 Daphna Erdinast-Vulcan session 4A 5 Aileen A. Espíritu session 1B 6 Bjarge Schwenke Fors session 1B 6 Filip Geerts session 2A Reading and Reacting 7 Reinhold Görling/Johan Schimanski session 6A 8 Klaske Havik session 2A Reading and Reacting 9 Anne Heith session 3A 9 Sylwia Hlebowicz session 1B 10 Stefan Holander session 2B 11 Henk van Houtum/Stephen Wolfe session 4A 11 Lene M. Johannessen session 6B 12 Elisavet Kalpaxi session 6B 13 Saija Kaskinen session 3A 14 Nadir Kinossian session 3B 14 Yael Levin session 4A 15 Monica Mecsei session 2B 16 Ulrike Hanna Meinhof KEYNOTE Thursday 16 Ruben Moi session 6A 17 Jyrki Pöysä session 4B 17 Johannes Riquet session 1A 18 Mari Ristolainen session 1A 19 Mireille Rosello/Tim Saunders session 4B 19 Anka Ryall session 6A 20 Tuija Saarinen session 3A 21 Petra Schlømer session 4B 21 Marc Schoonderbeek session 2A Reading and Reacting 22 Liudmila Sorokina session 3B 23 Frederik Tygstrup KEYNOTE Friday 23 Dmitry Vilensky PRESENTATION Thursday 24 Furuzgod Usmonov session 3B 24 Urban Wråkberg session 2B 25 NOTEPAD with abstracts in chronological order and space for notes PARTICIPANT LIST with affiliations and addresses Organisors and financing The Border Aesthetics Project ( ) is a research project financed by the Research Council of Norway under the KULVER (Assigning Cultural Values) programme, with supplementary funding from the University of Tromsø ( Border Poetics/Border Culture Research Group, Faculty of Humanities, Social Science and Education, University of Tromsø ( This conference has been made possible by additional funding from the University of Tromsø (for international conferences) and from the Department of Culture and Literature. Border Aesthetics This conference will investigate how changing perceptions of borders relate to shifting aesthetic practices. In so doing, it draws upon two guiding observations that must inform any notion of a border aesthetics, these being a) that aesthetic theories and practices regularly invoke and engage with notions of the border; and b) that borders are in turn capable of producing aesthetic effects and can themselves be conceived of as aesthetic objects. Papers can focus on the literature, film, photography, visual design, urban planning, and video art to name but a few examples. Also work produced by creative artists working in or imagining border regions will be welcomed. In particular, the Barents Region and the Mediterranean are important areas of study but we also will consider and encourage investigations of other regions.our concentration on border regions enables the Conference not only to explore and develop further the relatively new field of migratory aesthetics, but it will also formulate what might provisionally be called a zonal aesthetics. Indeed, one of its principal goals will be precisely to establish how a new aesthetics of space of a kind likely to be required by the study of the divergent groups, objects, values and activities that inhabit and pass through border zones can be described, explained, negotiated, and evaluated. In the process, the conference will explicitly address the question of how aesthetic activity participates in the processes by which people relate to the real and conceptual geographies in which they live and through which they move. This focus is both socially engaged and inquisitive about the dynamic ways in which cultural phenomena are ascribed value through aesthetic practice. At the same time, it situates the conference at the vanguard of current thinking about aesthetics. Keynotes Ulrike Hanna Meinhof is Professor of German and Cultural Studies at the University of Southampton and a specialist in discourse analysis. Her main areas of research currently involve ethnographic research on transnational networks of migrants, especially musicians from African countries, in multicultural neighbourhoods across European border communities, in provincial regions and in metropolitan spaces across Europe. She has previously led the EU Border Identities and Changing City Spaces projects; ongoing projects are SoFoNe: Searching for Neighbours: dynamics of mental and physical borders in Europe, and TNMundi: Diaspora as social and cultural practice: A study of transnational networks across Europe and Africa. Frederik Tygstrup is the director of the Copenhagen Doctoral School in Cultural Studies and Associate Professor of Comparative Literature at the University of Copenhagen. His primary specialization is in the history and theory of the European novel and his present research interests focus on the intersections of artistic practices BORDER AESTHETICS UNIVERSITY OF TROMSØ 5-8 SEPTEMBER and other social practices, including urban aesthetics, the history of representations and experiences of space, literature and medicine, literature and geography, literature and politics. Debra A. Castillo is Stephen H. Weiss Presidential Fellow, Emerson Hinchliff Professor of Hispanic Studies and Professor of Comparative Literature at Cornell University. She also directs the Latin American Studies Program. In her often transdisciplinary research, she specializes in contemporary narrative of the Americas, gender studies, and post-colonial literary theory. Her most recent book is the co-edited volume (with Kavita Panjabi) Cartographies of Affect: Across Borders in South Asia and the Americas. Cultural Production Panel We have invited four actors in the Barents Region aesthetic borderscape to present their work and share with us their thoughts on cultural production in Northern borderlands and on the border as a focus for cultural work, in the light of the themes of the conference. Panelists are Knut Erik Jensen (filmmaker), Liv Lundberg (poet and professor of creative writing, Tromsø), Liv-Hanne Haugen (dance artist) and Luba Kuzovnikova (artistic director, Pikene på broen, Kirkenes). Chair: Ruben Moi. Reading and Reacting Panel The Border Conditions group at the Delft University of Technology have organized this panel and will present their work in three papers. The panel Reading and Reacting: From the Research of Border Conditions to Architectural and Urban Design proposes to discuss original, transgressive and experimental modes and models that relate the research of border conditions to design. By setting up hypotheses and creating scenarios, future developments could be tested and probed, applied and implemented in urban and architectural design projects. Precisely the translation of in-depth territorial and urban readings into design procedures and strategies constitutes the main objective of this panel discussion. Techniques such as drawing, mapping, digital media and text will form the tools and instruments that enable the translation ofurban and territorial readings into strategies for architectural design, and explore the potential of such translations. Participants are Klaske Havik, Marc Schoonderbeek and Filip Geerts. Chair: Nadir Kinossian. Resident artists: Chto delat? / What is to be done? Dmitry Vilensky of art collective Chto delat? / What is to be done?, based in St. Petersburg, will present the group and their ongoing work on a Songspiel based on the Russian-Norwegian borderlands. The presentation will be at the Tromsø Gallery of Contemporary Art (Tromsø kunstforening). The platform Chto delat? / What is to be done? was founded with the goal of merging political theory, art, and activism in early 2003 in Petersburg by a workgroup of artists, critics, philosophers, and writers from Petersburg, Moscow, and Nizhny Novgorod. They are at present working on a project concerning the Norwegian-Russian border. BORDER AESTHETICS UNIVERSITY OF TROMSØ 5-8 SEPTEMBER María del Mar Azcona University of Zaragoza Urban Borders in Gran Torino I fix things, stuff like that. With these words Walt Kowalsky (Clint Eastwood) describes himself to Youa (Choua Kue) in Gran Torino (Clint Eastwood, 2008) when he is invited to a youngster gathering taking place in his Hmong neighbours house. Eastwood s role as fixer is not new to his star persona ( fixing things was after all what his roles in Sergio Leone s trilogy and the Dirty Harry franchise were about). What is new in Gran Torino is the nature of the problem to be fixed since it involves the reconsideration of the character s own national and cultural identity through his, at the beginning openly reluctant, engagement with the urban borders that exist within his Detroit neighbourhood. The filmic geography of Walt s neighbourhood is of great importance in the construction of this film, particularly in its employment of a border dynamic in the middle of a quintessentially U.S. space. In this paper I want to explore the articulation of the process of disintegration of borders traced by the film through an analysis of its spatial dynamics, and the impact of the presence of border crossers and transnational citizens on the construction of national identity. session 6B Chiara Brambilla/Holger Pötzsch University of Bergamo/University of Tromsø session 1A InVisible/InVisual Subjects: Notes Toward the Aesthetics and Politics of (Medial) Borderscapes The present contribution will focus on (medial) borderscapes of power and resistance. After an initial clarification of terminology we will move to a conceptualization of the ways through which media technologies act upon politics and either maintain and stabilize or subvert and change existing regimes of power and oppression. We deploy the theoretical frameworks of Hannah Arendt and Jacques Ranciére to understand a politics of in/visibility vested in a particular distribution of the sensible that is practiced by increasingly de-territorialized, global borderregimes. We will draw upon a conceptual distinction between in/visibility and in/visuality to distinguish various ways through which such border-regimes impact upon the lives and day-to-day practices of political subjects. Finally, we will exemplify the terminological distinction with reference to two cases where regimes of in/visibility and in/visuality impact upon the lives and well being of global subjects; drone warfare waged by Western powers in the global South and African migrants video self representations across the Mediterranean Euro- African borderland. BORDER AESTHETICS UNIVERSITY OF TROMSØ 5-8 SEPTEMBER Debra Ann Castillo Cornell University Rasquache Mockumentary: Alex Rivera s Why Cybraceros? This paper studies Rivera s 12-year-old spoof outsourcing website, with particular attention to the 4.5 minute 1997 video that served as its original point of departure (he is now best know for his 2008 feature film, Sleep Dealer. ). Rivera s work in general involves a practice he calls a rasquache aesthetic of filmmaking. In a recent interview he defines this concept more precisely, commenting on how Latinos/as channel the creativity that responds to necessity, as people with limited resources turn to repurposing and recycling for their original work. In the hands of Latino/a artists associated with rasquachismo, like Guillermo Gómez Peña, Lalo Alcaraz and Coco Fusco, all of whom have influenced Rivera profoundly, this practice of collage becomes a conscious and conscientious cultural practice. In a parallel manner, in Rivera s work, the tearing apart and rebuilding of cultural images adds texture and depth, and both his fiction and documentary films include stock footage, rough animation, public domain google map images, and a variety of other materials. KEYNOTE Wednesday Daphna Erdinast-Vulcan The University of Haifa Borderlines and Contraband: Bakhtin and the Question of the Subject The proposed paper draws on my forthcoming study, Between Philosophy and Literature: Bakhtin and the Question of the Subject (Stanford University Press), which offers a view of Bakhtin as an exilic philosopher, torn between a post-nietzschean sensibility and a profound temperamental religiosity, and compelled by his own thinking to turn from philosophy to literature (philosophy s traditional other ) in an attempt to account for the dynamics of ethical subjectivity. Bakhtin s canonization in the West as a precursor of postmodernity (loosely characterized by its militant de-authoring of meaning and the debunking of master-narratives) has been built on a series of concepts Dialogicity, Polyphony, Heteroglossia, and the Carnivalesque whose common denominators seem to be the transgression of borderlines, the celebration of plurality, and the resistance to any and all forms of hegemony. But these transgressive concepts, formulated between the late 1920s and the 1940s, are radically opposed to the spirit of Bakhtin s early works, which appears to be thoroughly conservative, religious, and profoundly concerned with the need for borderlines and frames. Counter-intuitively, perhaps, the Bakhtinian trope for ethics is that of the loophole. The paper would suggest that it is precisely this apparent contradiction, the simultaneous recognition session 4A BORDER AESTHETICS UNIVERSITY OF TROMSØ 5-8 SEPTEMBER of the need for boundary-lines and the equally compelling need to transgress and transcend them, which generates the Bakhtinian architectonics of ethical subjectivity. Aileen A. Espíritu The Barents Institute, University of Tromsø Æsthetics/Politics/Ethics: North Korea in Kirkenes Featured in the 2012 Barents Spektakel were performances by a youth accordion ensemble and of a directed picture spectacle from North Korea brought to Kirkenes by the Norwegian artist and director Morten Traavik. Traavik s collaborative exhibition to bring the best that North Korea could offer was hugely popular in Kirkenes, attracting the attention of both national and international media. Through an analysis of the exhition itself, the media discourses about it, and some of the voices of those who saw and participated in the exhibit, I attempt to explore the meaning behind the Traavik s exhibition of North Korea at the cross-border art festival, The Barents Spektakel. If we accept Ranciere s arguments that there exists no border between æsthetics and politics, and that indeed they are interdependent, what then is the æsthetic politics and the politics of æsthetics of Traavik s exhibition of North Korea in Kirkenes? North Korea remains one of the most closed, secretive, and repressive regimes in the world, a dystopia of the communist dream, how then does the exhibit fit into Ranciere s æsthetics? Moreover, what role does ethics play in the relationship between æsthetics and politics in Traavik s exhibit? session 1B Bjarge Schwenke Fors University of Tromsø Border Dramatics: The Samovar Theatre on the Russian-Norwegian Border The Samovar theatre is a professional theatre in the small Norwegian town of Kirkenes, close to the Russian border. Since the theatre was founded in the early 1990s the border, as concept and place, has been essential in its performances. The last years the theatre has even developed its own particular theatrical style called border dramatics. The style is marked by the use of actors from different countries on stage as well as the use of multilingualism. Up to nine different languages are spoken on stage at the same time. The theater s performances also tend to mix genres; music, dance, video and acting. The topics of the session 1B BORDER AESTHETICS UNIVERSITY OF TROMSØ 5-8 SEPTEMBER performances are generally border related. In my paper I will discuss what border dramatics is about. What are the ideas behind it and how does it relate to the real life and politics of the Russian-Norwegian borderland? My paper is based on extensive anthropological field research in the town of Kirkenes, including participatory field research in the theatre. Filip Geerts Delft University of Technology session 2A Reading and Reacting The Territory of Architecture or the Architecture of the Territory: The Border In- Between Architecture is inherently involved in the making of borders, replacing old with new borders, and producing space by virtue of the precision of these borders. A certain interest in understanding and reconfiguring existing border zones is understandable, when this seems to touch the essence of what architecture is able to do. Insight into what borders are, and the content needed to reconfigure borders, more often than not, needs to come from what borders demarcate: the reality of the territories the border divides. The territory is therefore the other side of the coin, the sine-quanon of the border: any investigation into the border, beyond stating it is there, will necessarily pan out into an investigation of territory in the form of a geographic survey, re-drawing, measuring, mapping etc. Architecture tends to start from the precision of the border that can be gradually perforated, re-aligned, materialized, etc. increasing its own complexity within a given resistance. More often than not the territory informing the border, its raison-d être is neglected. The territory has become a vague notion, borrowed from other disciplines at best. It seems that together with border aesthetics, a discussion on territory is unavoidable. With the discussion on territory by Vittorio Gregotti, published in , the contribution will present a particular moment in architecture culture to start to question the legitimacy of looking at territory through an architectural lens again, both in its historical context and as a horizon for practice. BORDER AESTHETICS UNIVERSITY OF TROMSØ 5-8 SEPTEMBER Reinhold Görling/Johan Schimanski Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf session 6A Reading Kafka s Die Sorge des Hausvaters as a Text about Sovereignty, Aesthetics and Borders This paper reads Kafka s short text Die Sorge des Hausvaters ( The Cares of a Family Man ) as a partly allegorical text about sovereignty, aesthetics and borders. We use Kafka s text as an entry point, opening up the field of reflection by examining its main motifs. The main figures of the text are the fairly anonymous Hausvater (the family man, literally the House-Father ) and a mysterious toy-like figure, Odradek. The Hausvater is by implication the sovereign of the family and the house, a bordered space, where every thing has its place and its meaning. The text tries to positions Odradek through its name which may have Slavic as well as German origins. But as uncertain as these etymologies of its name is its origin in general. For the Hausvater Odradek is a denizen of in-between spaces. It lives in the margins and on the thresholds, moving freely between the inside and the outside, disappears and reappears again. Is it like a migrant crossing the borders of the nationhouse? Its interdeterminacy resist the sovereignty of the Hausvater. If the Odradek is a Sorge (worry, concern, care) of the Hausvater, does the Hausvater want to get rid of it or look after it? Is it an undeterminable threat? It is even uncertain if it dies. The very form of the Odradek has unclear borders, a flat star-shaped spool for thread with some broken threads hanging on to it, a small wooden crossbar and a right-angled rod. Its uselessness it reminds us of the Kantian definition of beauty as being disinterested, but its melancholic aesthetic as a fragment makes sovereign have Sorge about it. The Odradek is uncannily similar to the sovereign as being outside the law. What marks off the border and relationship between the sovereign with its violent phantasm of omnipotence and the aesthetic? Or is the aesthetic that which mockingly resists such bordering and reveals the sovereign s fear of death? Who is the Hausvater? Is he the narrator I or the generalized one or the text? Why these sliding subject p
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