Stuart Hall and Cultural Studies at UEL

Stuart Hall, the globally-respected and much-loved public intellectual and giant of cultural studies, who has just died, had a huge influence on the development of Sociology and Cultural Studies at the University of East London.

UEL (then still North East London Polytechnic) was the first university in the UK to establish an undergraduate degree in, and later a department of, Cultural Studies. The BA, launched in 1980, was developed by a group of UEL staff several of whom had had strong links with the Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies (CCCS) at the University of Birmingham, the unit directed by Stuart Hall. Read More »

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Hauntology with Mark Fisher

24 April 2014
19:00to21:00

Ghosts of My LifeCCSR welcomes Capitalist Realism: Is There No Alternative? author Mark Fisher to launch his new book Ghosts of My Life, in conversation with the London-based artist and writer Laura Oldfield Ford. Are we, as Fisher argues, haunted by futures that failed to happen?

“Ghosts Of My Life confirms that Mark Fisher is our most penetrating explorer of the connections between pop culture, politics, and personal life under the affective regime of digital capitalism. The most admirable qualities of Fisher’s work are its lucidity, reflecting the urgency of his commitment to communicating ideas; his high expectations of popular art’s power to challenge, enlighten, and heal; and his adamant refusal to settle for less.” Simon Reynolds, author of Retromania and Rip It Up and Start Again.

Venue: Room US.G.17, University of East London, University Square Stratford, 1 Salway Road, E15. 1NF

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Social Media, Activism & Surveillance

19 March 2014
17:30to19:30

Information and communications technologies have had a profound effect on political activism in the 21st century. In the hybrid space of contemporary cities, movements for social change are co-ordinated through social media and, effectively, take place both on the street and in information space. At the same time, as the Snowden files have revealed, digital communications are routinely monitored by government agencies and military applications of the same technologies facilitate drone surveillance and targeting. In the lead up to our annual lecture, this seminar brings together specialists in the field of social media, activism and surveillance to assess the impact of digital activism and its future development. How is the use of social media changing in the face of increased surveillance? What are the connections between activist and military applications of information technologies? And how do people respond to monitoring and surveillance in daily life? Read More »

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Annual Lecture 2014: Glenn Greenwald

14 May 2014
18:30to20:30

Glenn PortraitThe Centre for Cultural Studies Research at the University of East London is delighted to announce that our annual lecture for 2014 will be given by Glenn Greenwald, who came to the attention of the world in June 2013 as the journalist responsible for the publication of documents leaked by ex-NSA contractor Edward Snowden. The documents, which were published simultaneously in The Guardian and The Washington Post, revealed the extraordinary extent of US and UK government surveillance of both private citizens and foreign governments.  Since then, the UK government has threatened Greenwald with criminal investigation and his partner, David Miranda, has been arrested and held for nine hours while passing through Heathrow airport on the pretext that he was carrying encrypted electronic documents. Greenwald, who is currently living in Brazil, has publicly stated that ‘not being able to visit the UK is not something that I regard as a punishment’. Read More »

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Launch of Jeremy Gilbert’s Common Ground

Event to mark the publication of Professor Jeremy Gilbert’s new book Common Ground: Democracy & Collectivity in an Age of Individualism

Full details will be published here shortly

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Visibility & Citizenship

A series of seminars which will take place in Spring, 2014 assessing the impact of the Snowden papers with interventions from scholars in surveillance studies, journalists and hackers. Exploring the world of the ‘dark net’ , visibility and everyday life, surveillance and polity and digital resistance.

Full details will be published here shortly

 

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Vinyl Culture: A Seminar and a Party

28 March 2014
18:00

L1230621Vinyl is the medium that won’t die. How do we explain it’s long-lasting appeal, its unique aesthetic qualities, and the strange sense that these questions are somehow important? This event will see a panel of expert commentators and practitioners discussing the issues in the ideal setting of Brilliant Corners, London’s only audiophile venue, before then hosting a party to put theory into practice.

 

Attendance is free and open to all – no need to register, just turn up.  Read More »

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Reflections on the Political Economy of Digital Labour

28 March 2014
12:00to13:30

A lecture by Professor Christian Fuchs, University of Westminster.
Jonathan Hardy will be chair and discussant.

Abstract

In public and academic debates, journalism and management ideology, there is a lot of talk about the emergence of a qualitatively new Internet that is termed “social media” or “web 2.0”. In this talk I challenge such claims that go hand in hand with the ideas that we are experiencing the emergence of participatory culture and Facebook revolutions. I argue that deepening class relations are at the heart of contemporary capitalism and capitalist social media, that we need to engage with Karl Marx’s theory in order to understand society, inequality and the media landscape today, and that the transformation of paid into unpaid or lowly paid precarious labour is at the heart of the transformations of labour today. I situate the emergence of so-called commercial social media such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube in the context of what can be termed digital labour – capital’s exploitation of users’ work. In order to understand digital labour, we need to see the global division of labour underlying it and the role that targeted advertising plays for the capital accumulation model of social media corporations. I conclude that we need to re-invent the Internet in order to establish truly social media.

Read More »

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Urban Audio/Vision 2014: Cultural Interventions on Migration, Borders & Race

A collaboration with UEL’s Centre for Migration, Refugees & Belonging.

This event will take place at INIVA (Institute of International Visual Arts), 1 Rivington Place, EC2A 3BA

Part of CCSR’s Race & Nationalism series. Race and Sport will be the second seminar in the series and will take place in July 2014

Full details including dates and times will be published here shortly

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Birmingham Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies 50 Years On

24 June 2014to25 June 2014

CCSR is pleased to publicise this event which will explore the legacy and influence of the CCCS 50 years after its inception.

To mark the launch of an archive of the Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies at the University of Birmingham, this conference will reflect on the influence and legacies of the CCCS, both inside the academy and beyond. Following Richard Hoggart’s pioneering decision to embark on the research of popular culture, and the subsequent appointment of Stuart Hall, the Centre became one of the biggest influences on the development of cultural and media studies around the world. The aim of the conference is to bring together former members of staff with all those interested in its work and influence, both inside and outside universities. It will examine the global reach of the Centre, the teaching and research methods that were employed and the lessons the Centre can provide in the current political and cultural contexts.

Speakers

Confirmed speakers include Geoff Eley, Lawrence Grossberg, Stuart Hall, Richard Johnson, Jo Littler and Jackie Stacey. A full programme will be posted online in due course.

Contemporary Cultural Studies Conference flyer

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  • CCSR Publications

    Anticapitalism and Culture by Jeremy Gilbert

    Anticapitalism and Culture by Jeremy Gilbert

    Technoculture The Key Concepts by Debra Benita Shaw

    Edinburgh Companion to Virginia Woolf and the Arts by Maggie Humm

    Hold On To Your Dreams: Arthur Russell and the Downtown Music Scene, 1973-92 by Tim Lawrence

    Snapshots of Bloomsbury by Maggie Humm

    Visceral Cosmopolitanism by Mica Nava
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