CFP: New Media and the US South

by Stephanie Rountree

CFP: New Media and the U.S. South [Edited Collection]

Proposals Due May 1, 2018
Editors: Gina Caison (Georgia State University), Lisa Hinrichsen (University of Arkansas), Stephanie Rountree (Auburn University)

We are seeking inventive work from scholars in a variety of fields for an edited collection that will examine the role of new media in relationship to the U.S. South. Technologies of virtuality and transformations in digital media and the geoweb are augmenting traditional concepts of space and place, offering new knowledge politics that carry a cluster of implications for commerce, governance, civic participation, and activism. Beyond its global reach through popular web-based and mobile applications, new media reshape the ways we view and interact within the local, from altering the way we navigate city streets to innovating modes of human intimacy; they challenge and change the ways in which we build and express attachments to place(s), form spatial imaginaries, and interact with landscapes. In examining how changes in information and media landscapes modify concepts of “region,” this collection will both articulate the virtual realities of the 21st-century U.S. South and also historicize the impact of “new” media on a region that has always been mediated.

Recognizing that many forms of “old” media were once “new,” this collection seeks to engage with epistemologies of “newness” that act upon ideas of both “media” and the “South.” To that end, this collection poses several questions for investigation. How have new media technologies challenged the material and linguistic nexuses of southern communities? Might digital technologies aid in, to use Brittany Cooper and Margaret Rhee’s phrase, “hacking the b/w binary” that has permeated narratives of the U.S. South? Or do technologies of geomonitoring and surveillance trap humans in forms of what Jerome E. Dobson and Peter F. Fisher have called “geoslavery”? How are our knowledge and memory of southern space and place being reshaped by new media in the present, and what are the historical antecedents to this phenomenon? What new types of collective memories, politics, and publics are being created through new configurative practices inherent to digital media?

We welcome papers from a variety of scholarly perspectives and methodological approaches. Suggested topics include:

• The impact of mobile technologies on privacy and surveillance in southern spaces
• Identity issues in social networks including but not limited to gender, sexuality, race, and disability
• Place-based new media practices
• New media and the fostering and/or threatening of cultural diversity, equity, and inclusion
• Digital neocolonialism
• Digital decolonization efforts and activism
• U.S. South/souths and the digital public sphere
• Virtual/viral/hypertextual souths
• Region and the digital divide
• The U.S. South and big data
• The mobilizing potential of new media
• Digital news and disinformation
• Networked cultural production in the digital age, including media convergence
• New media and the construction of cultural identity
• Specific studies of the U.S. South/souths on or across specific platforms (e.g. WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube, Wikipedia etc.)
• Affective experiences with the new media
• Phenomenological and epistemological implications of new media
• Podcasting the U.S. South/souths
• Digital temporalities
• Locational data mining and new forms of “geoslavery”
• Neogeographic mapping practices
• Spatial archives, digital preservation, cultural heritage practices
• Transmedia narratives
• The aesthetics and politics of new media
• New pedagogies for the new media landscape

Chapter proposals of 500 words, along with a 200-word bio should be sent to by May 1, 2018. We expect to notify authors by the end of May, and to require chapters to be completed by the October 1, 2018.