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Call for Papers

17 & 18 December 2014
University of Madras
Chennai, India

Jointly organised by the Department of Journalism & Communication, University of Madras, India, the Department of Media, Film & Communication, University of Otago, New Zealand, & New Zealand India Research Institute.

This conference explores the everyday lives and experiences of people in contemporary India. It seeks to critically interrogate and debate the varied ways in which everyday life in India is played out, acted upon, and conceived. The Indian everyday is diverse, heterogeneous, and changing rapidly. Multiple complimentary and contradictory forces circulate and compete, and new social divisions, solidarities, and struggles for recognition and legitimacy animate the contemporary Indian everyday. At a time when India is at a critical juncture in its globalization story, Everyday Life in Contemporary India seeks to examine the ways that people negotiate, traverse and engage various aspects of their everyday life. The aim of the conference is to examine the complexities of the everyday and provide a platform to foster a deeper understanding of socio-cultural life in contemporary India. We welcome papers from a variety of disciplines — cultural studies, social and cultural geography, media studies, communication studies, sociology, anthropology, history, literature, visual culture, and politics — that theoretically and critically engage with selected aspects of everyday life in contemporary India.

We invite papers to address the following broad concerns:

• How do people cultivate practices, activities, practical techniques, tactics, and social bonds in order to negotiate everyday life in contemporary India?

• How do they cultivate horizons that provide them with the impetus, direction, and desire to construct a future?

• What is the impact of this on different aspects of their lived realities — gender relations, production and consumption patterns, lifestyle choices, family structures, religion, social distinctions (caste and class), politics, sense of belonging, sexuality, community and culture?

• How are cultural practices and political attitudes changing and shifted in contemporary India? What has remained unchanged, or perhaps been hybridized? What new experiences and practices animate metropolitan cities and rural communities? How have public spaces been reconfigured? How are social hierarchies articulated? What is the role and location of new media in the negotiation of private/public spheres and the transformation of everyday life?

• Whose everyday are we talking about? How might we theorize everyday life in contemporary India? What regimes of inequalities continue to prevail, in what circumstances have new ones formed? How do state & global policies impact local everyday practices? Have patterns of social mobility remained static or been transformed? How are citizens and city planners responding to these contemporary changes in India? How is the diaspora reconfiguring the Indian everyday?

Abstract Submission

The conference committee will accept abstracts until 10 November 2014.

Paper proposals can be submitted to Proposals should include title, author's name/s, affiliation, contact email address, a short abstract (no more than 300 words), and a 100-word bio.

Duration & Venue

The proposed conference will be for two days, on 17-18 December 2014. It will be organized in Chennai at the University of Madras (Chepauk Campus) premises.

Conference Registration Form

Download the Conference Registration Form here

Chennai City Travel Guide

Click here for the guide

Maps of the Venue to a few central hubs

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