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[ecrea] CFP: Podcasting, the Popular, and the Public Sphere
Sun Apr 22 20:56:03 GMT 2018
*CFP: Podcasting, the Popular, and the Public Sphere*
Popular Communication: The International Journal of Media and Culture
(Deadline: September 1, 2018)
Podcasting is a paradoxical medium.Its form and content are encoded with
markers of the both the popular and the elite. On the one hand, it is a
medium deeply embedded in the everyday practices of everyday people. We
listen on the train, at the gym, or even on the job. It is frequently
produced by avocational enthusiasts far removed from the elite spheres
of media production culture. It is popular both in the sense that
millions enjoy it and in its ability to so effectively blend into common
activities. Yet at the same time podcasting often takes on the contours
of elite discourse. The diversity of podcast offerings can yield highly
specialized content requiring listeners to possess considerable
expertise in esoteric subject matter. Political podcasts, in the hopes
of differentiating themselves from more mainstream offerings, tend
towards a wonkish focus that can be alienating and intentionally
exclusionary to large groups of potentially interested listeners.Gunn
and Brummett (2004) argue that the project of popular communication
should be to foreclose the study of “elite culture” and privilege
instead “the objects of everyday life.”In podcasting we find elements of
the everyday and the elite interacting constantly and with considerable
success.This special issue of /Popular Communication/ will consider the
ways in which the podcasting medium negotiates and benefits from these
tendencies towards simultaneous inclusivity and exclusivity.
To do so, articles in this issue will analyze elements of podcasting’s
brief but vibrant history, interrogating the medium’s popular
possibilities, revolutionary promises and moment-defining media texts.
Arriving in the midst of increasing global political turbulence and
offering a relatively inexpensive form of mass expression, podcasting
significantly expanded a public sphere once dominated by opinion
journalism, talk radio, and public affairs television. In this sense, it
offered a popularization of public sphere elements long dominated by
elite discourse. Perhaps most alluringly, podcasting has offered a mode
of discursive media aimed at younger, pop culture-savvy listeners
invested in both on-demand programs _and_ political consciousness.But
this newfound freedom and flexibility does not necessarily mean that the
paradigms established by older media have been abolished or even
meaningfully disrupted. It took little time, for example, for large
corporations and other elite institutions to dominate mainstream podcast
rankings, the most influential of which is hosted by the global megalith
Apple. Furthermore, the logics of narrowcasting have driven numerous
independent producers towards increasingly specific content, fracturing
the public and perhaps obscuring some of the popular potential of the
medium. Podcasting thus offers new opportunities for expression, but
nonetheless replicates certain historically established patterns of
media concentration and limitation. Specific research questions of
interest to this special issue include but are not by any means limited to:
-How has the growth of podcasting both expanded and contracted the
discursive possibilities for popular political media across the world?
-How do the histories of radio, regulation, and network distribution
help to contextualize the popular dynamics of political podcasting?
-How do algorithms, rating systems, and other data structures impact the
work of producers attempting to gain audiences for their political podcasts?
-How do podcasts fit into or defy traditions of progressive media?
-How do podcasts circulate globally and mediate debates over
globalization, immigration, diaspora and other international concerns?
-How do podcasts embrace the blending of information and entertainment
found elsewhere in global political media?
The deadline for submissions is September 1, 2018.
Papers should be no longer than 7,000 words (all inclusive)
Papers should be submitted using ScholarOne
Full instructions for authors, including APA 6th Edition style
guidelines, can be found at the same page.
Correspondence and questions about this call for papers can be directed
to Matt Sienkiewicz ((matt.sienkiewicz /at/ bc.edu)
<mailto:(matt.sienkiewicz /at/ bc.edu)>) and Deborah Jaramillo ((dlj /at/ bu.edu)
<mailto:(dlj /at/ bu.edu)>)
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