Call for Papers
Covideology: Mediating the Significance of a Pandemic
“…The future kept arriving…”
(Ian McEwan, Machines Like Me)
Over the last few months in early 2020, we have been waking up to a world that is less recognizable and less familiar to what we would have expected of our current lives and livelihoods. The small joys of daily life that we have taken for granted have become luxuries. Our working lives, if we still have them, have been transformed. This situation and the disruption that has been a part of it is due to the novel coronavirus known as COVID 19 and we call the forms, representations and ways of thinking influenced by this virus as COVIDEOLOGY. COVID 19 means living with a global health crisis and permanent uncertainty the full magnitude of which is unknown. We know the drill for avoiding the worst with the officially recommended actions – washing hands, staying inside and what is mistakenly named “social distancing”, which really should be called “physical distancing”.
As we have seen, in response to the need for physical isolation, many folks have found ways to retain social connections. So, it is a health crisis, but there are, as we now know many dimensions to this pandemic. With the number of deaths affecting more low-income earners, the elderly and African Americans in the USA, the impact has not been evenly distributed.
The implications are that as a crisis it is multidimensional – it is a representational crisis, a media crisis, an information crisis, a psychological crisis and an ideological crisis.
COVIDEOLOGY spans this multiplicity of crises.
We invite papers for this special issue of Global Media Journal (Australian Edition) on COVID 19. How is the current situation represented? What and who is most visible in those representations? What and who remain invisible? Which modes of data-gathering help us in this emergency? What kinds of data serve counter-democratic agendas?
How are we to grasp a concept of the “public” in the context of media and physical/social distancing? Can the concept of “globalisation” continue as a channel for resolving our major concerns? Or are we thrown back into local and regional solutions? What cultural and communication regimes are emerging as we stream largely corporate content via our media. What are the implications of local artists having to become buskers on the internet to survive? Who is advantaged in a culture of forced technological connectivity and who is disadvantaged? In a pandemic, what are the politics of fear and hope? Do we need a new means of imagining the future? Or is the future always with us?
We know these questions only scratch the surface of this complex set of experiences and we can imagine a number of engagements around new forms of interaction that have resulted from new arrangements from education to medical practice. We remain committed to an intellectual and creative mission to explore matters especially as they relate to communication, media and cultural studies, but can see how this pandemic and COVIDEOLOGY can open up many new lines of inquiry.
Deadline for Abstracts (100 words) August 1, 2020
Deadline for Completed Paper (6k – 8K words) October 1, 2020
Hart Cohen: firstname.lastname@example.org
Myra Gurney: email@example.com
Antonio Castillo: firstname.lastname@example.org
Juan Francisco Salazar Sutil: J.Salazar@westernsydney.edu.au
Saba Bebawi Saba.Bebawi@uts.edu.au
For further information please see our website: https://www.hca.westernsydney.edu.au/gmjau/ and especially our submission guidelines.