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LiFE 2020 : Lucania between Film and Ecology. Bodies, Environments, Representations


When Jul 14, 2020 - Jul 15, 2020
Where Matera, Italy
Submission Deadline Mar 15, 2020
Categories    film   ecocriticism   film philososophy   basilicata (southern italy)

Call For Papers


LiFE 2020 Conference
Lucania between Film and Ecology
Bodies, Environments, Representations

July 14-15, 2020
Matera, Italy

Deadline for submissions: 15th March 2020

The LiFE 2020 conference is organized by the Department of Humanities at the University of Basilicata, in collaboration with the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures and Modern Cultures at the University of Turin. The initiative originates from the 2014-2020 National Operative Program in Research and Innovation.
The LiFE 2020 conference aims to explore the diversified connections between Basilicata, cinema and ecology, and thus to identify and emphasize the forms and ways through which urban/rural historical, cultural and social contexts have been and may be variously identified and represented. In order to explore the above mentioned connections that may be easily grouped under the term “film ecocriticism,” we can refer to the most general concept of the “film world” as the hermeneutic horizon within which ecocritical research can examine not only different ways of representing reality, but also the processes of signification through which it can be rethought and transformed. In this sense, moving images can be considered as a powerful means of transformation and change, from past to new ways of interpreting and inhabiting the world. This is the general framework within which the conference aims at considering film as a proper medium for ecocritical and philosophical reflections on a regional reality such as Basilicata, its history, its people, and its territory.
Film ecocriticism is a suitable approach for reflecting on the relations between human and nature, and for describing contemporary environmental crisis inasmuch as it represents an exemplary critical perspective of being “between”: between a present of environmental overexploitation and destruction and an increasingly precarious, uncertain future, between a present that must still be carefully analysed and discussed and a future that must be imagined and represented before it can be realized. From this standpoint, film can allow us to abandon the traditional anthropocentric perspective in favour of a more inclusive, ecocentric one. This pondering on moving images offers an occasion to reflect on the historical and cultural heritage of Basilicata, as well as on its traditions, values and symbols, and the way they might revive and survive in the future. This approach includes a thorough research within different kinds of films and genres, from narrative to documentary cinema.
The LiFE 2020 conference thus aims to embrace the idea of film ecocriticism – in the broader perspective that we have described above – as a privileged keyword for interpreting cinema and its connections with Basilicata and, in more general sense, with the very idea of the “South.” The conference represents a starting point for reflections that refer to different but contiguous approaches to film, such as environmental studies, ecocinema, film-philosophy, film theory, critical-theory, gender studies, animal and post-human studies. In this broad context, we imagine the conference as enabling a space in which borders between different disciplines and research perspectives can be usefully redrawn.

Submissions may include, but are not limited to, the following topics:

• Sustainable development
• Biopolitics
• Capitalist excess, speculation, and precarity
• Climate change/justice
• Earthquakes and other catastrophic, tramautic events
• Ecolinguistics
• Ecosophy
• Eco-cities
• Environmental activism
• Environmental arts
• Environmental ethics
• Environmental history
• Ethnobiology
• Film ecology
• Globalization and post-colonialism
• Green and environmentalist cinema
• Human/non-human relation
• Management/disavowal of environmental risk
• Posthumanism
• Queer ecologies, ecofeminism, and environmental justice
• Space and environment within cities
• Virtual spaces/real spaces
• War, trauma, and the environment

Scholars from all areas of cinema and media studies, as well as historiography, etno-anthropology and environmental humanities are invited to submit proposals on original, unpublished research related to the conference theme. We welcome diversity in theoretical and methodological approaches to the linguistic and cultural contexts considered. Oral presentations will be allocated 15 minutes (followed by 5 minutes for questions and discussion). The conference languages will be English (primarily) and Italian.
Please send your submission with an abstract (max. 300 words) and a short bio (max. 150 words) in one document as an email attachment to and/or by March 15, 2020. Notifications about acceptance or rejection of proposal will be sent promptly.
Participants will have to cover their own travel and accommodation expenses. Travel information, a list of local hotels and information on further events will be posted on the LiFE conference website in Spring 2020.

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