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[Commlist] Call for Papers - Constructing Young Selves in a Digital Media Ecology: Youth Cultures, Practices and Identity
Tue Jul 02 00:25:09 GMT 2019
Call for Papers:
'Constructing Young Selves in a Digital Media Ecology:
Youth Cultures, Practices and Identity'
A Two-day Symposium
Department of Communication and Media Studies,
School of Economics and Political Science,
National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (NKUA)
Information, Communication & Society (iCS).
Dates: Thursday 4 and Friday 5 June 2020
The development of young people’s identities and sense of selfhood is
widely recognized as being a social activity undertaken through
interaction and feedback with significant others. Advancing beyond earlier
top-down models of socialization, whereby parents and teachers were
largely seen as responsible for transmitting stable cultural norms,
knowledge, political attitudes, religious beliefs and social practices to
young people, contemporary understanding has instead foregrounded the
active, dynamic, co-construction of young selves. Such approaches have not
only drawn attention to the active engagement of young people in shaping
their own identities but has also emphasized the wider social, political,
economic, cultural contexts that frame the possibilities for the
interactive realization of personhood. Most profoundly, and the focus of
this international symposium, for the current generation of young people,
the active construction of self is significantly mediated by and through a
digital media ecology of communications networks, algorithms and
platforms. These emergent networked environments have led to celebrations
about the potential to enhance the development of young selves through
wider access to knowledge, cultures, beliefs, identities and the
opportunities to perform such self-formation through online interaction
with diverse others. But it has also produced moral panics for those
concerned about the perceived negative effects of digital media, such as
attention deficit, the break-down of authority, dumbing down of education,
infantilizing politics, and the weakening of traditional family ties.
Premised upon a notion of youth as a social construction, as well as upon
its permeability, and taking into account how young people - whether as
young children, tweens, teenagers, or late twentysomething, whether in the
West or outside of it- are growing up with significant access to
globalized media and transmedia platforms and narratives, this two-day
international symposium will critically investigate the issues presented
by the construction of young selves within the contemporary digital media
ecology. With the aim to grasp the complexity and diversity of most young
people’s experiences and practices with online technologies, we invite
original research findings and theoretical analysis addressing (though not
exclusively) such questions as:
• What role for young people do traditional markers of identity such as
social class, religion, family, or geography play in online group
• As increasingly more young people find themselves geographically
dispersed and living transitional lives in immigrant communities or in
refugee camps, what kind of possibilities for connectedness, dialogue and
identity-making online technologies have to offer?
• What value are social media platforms for gay, transgender, queer,
atheist, or differently abled young people as spaces for socialization?
• How much are young people’s political norms and engagement practices
facilitated by digital communication?
• How does everyday online engagement affect interaction between young
people and significant others such parents, teachers and other traditional
• Does social networking influence learning practices, competencies or
• What are young people’s attitudes and actual use of digital media in
• How should we assess the significance of celebrity culture for young
people’s development of self?
• Are young people more likely to develop a transnational outlook as a
consequence of the digital media ecology?
We invite 400-word abstracts outlining empirical, theoretical or
policy-orientated papers that address these or related questions.
Abstracts should be accompanied by a 100-word biography of the
presenter(s) together with contact details, all sent to Assoc. Prof. Liza
Tsaliki at (icsathens2020 /at/ gmail.com)
Abstract submission by 15 October 2019
Notification of decision: 15 December 2019.
A selection of papers presented at the symposium will be published in a
special issue of the international Journal Information, Communication &
Confirmed keynote speakers:
Sonia Livingstone, Professor. DPhil, FBA, FBPS, FRSA, OBE
London School of Economics and Political Science
Mary Celeste Kearney,
Associate Professor of Film, Television, and Theatre
Director, GeNDer Studies Program
University of Notre Dame
Liza Tsaliki, Department of Communication and Media Studies, NKUA
Dan Mercea, Department of Media, City University London
Brian Loader, Editor-in-Chief iCS.
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