[Air-L] ECREA pre-conference workshop on Visual Politics & Protest

Suay Melisa Oezkula suaymelisa.ozkula at unitn.it
Thu Mar 31 04:42:09 PDT 2022

Dear Colleagues,

We are pleased to share our call for submissions for the ECREA pre-conference
workshop on “Visual Politics & Protest - Current Methodological Challenges”
(online, 6-7th October 2022). Please be so kind as to share it with anyone
you think might be interested and do get in touch in case of questions.

Call for submissions:

ECREA pre-conference workshop on “Visual Politics & Protest - Current
Methodological Challenges”

Call for submissions

War streaming on Instagram, propaganda in press photography, refugee
activism on TikTok? - Recent European crises have shown images and videos
as essential tools of communication in politics and protest, a trend
mirrored in the increasing use of visuals in research methodologies. Visual
data can capture practices of visual, performative or non-verbal
communication, text-image relationships, the development of visual formats,
notions of aesthetics, as well as underlying meanings of symbols and codes.
Extant research has since captured different elements of visual politics
and protest, including: social history (e.g. protest photography),
political commentary or alignment (e.g. through memes or overlays), social
cues in political communication (e.g. GIFs, filters, or emoji), visual
activism practices (e.g. culture-jamming, sousveillance video coverage,
flesh-witnessing), and visual forms of information documentation and
distribution (e.g. infographics).

Even so, new creative practices have at times challenged research
practices, for example with regards to image authenticity and appropriation
in mis- and disinformation campaigns (e.g. deepfakes), platform affordances
in new visual formats and spaces (e.g. short videos on TikTok),
(mis)interpretation and visual (il)literacy in communications, trust in
image data as factual evidence, and opaqueness in the production of visual
materials. These critical debates have been particularly contentious in the
arena of politics and protest, where visuals have been seen to shape
political opinion and discourse, electoral campaigns, war coverage, and
Covid-19 data visualisations.

In response to these trends, the ECREA Visual Cultures section is inviting
submissions to the online pre-conference on “Visual Politics & Protest”
with a focus on epistemological and methodological challenges, taking place
on 6th and 7th October 2022 (= 2 weeks prior to ECREA 2022). The
pre-conference workshop will include a keynote by Dr. Jing Zeng (University
of Zurich), a series of lightning talks, a panel discussion (including
speakers Dr. Stefania Vicari, Dr. Shana MacDonald, & Dr. Jing Zeng), and
hands-on discussion rounds with a specific focus on epistemological
challenges in research on visual politics and protest.

Topics of interest

We are looking for lightning talks on challenges encountered in research on
visual politics and/or protest, which will be allocated to thematic panels.
Towards encouraging lively discussions, we are not looking for entire paper
proposals, but focussed submissions that outline the challenge along with
examples (in written, visual, or other creative forms).

On a broad level this may include (but is not limited to):


   New methodological challenges in visual or multimodal data collection or

   Platform- or format-specific challenges in conducting visual research on
   politics and protest

   Methodological approaches for capturing visuality or visual cultures
   surrounding politics and protest

   Challenges in embedding visuals or visuality with textual, audio, or
   sensory materials

   Issues in interpreting and/or quantifying visual data

   Emerging approaches to visualising image or video data

   Suggestions for the ethical treatment of visuality in politics or protest

   Approaches in analysing specific political visual practices and/or

   Epistemological discussions of the role of the visual in politics,
   protest, or social movements

   Theorizing visual issues (example: visibility through aesthetics and

Submissions should ideally either discuss new challenges, present in-depth
illustrations/ examples of specific challenges, or introduce new approaches
or nuances.


Please submit a 200 word description of your challenge in researching
visual cultures or materials, along with your contact details on this Google
Form link <https://forms.gle/YWAUJK7RDjHvo6Fe8> (200 is the maximum incl.
references). Proposals can be submitted until 1st June 2022 at 23.59 CEST.
Descriptions should be written in English and contain a summary of the
challenge that will be presented, as well as a notion of the reflections or
approaches that are taken or recommended. The description may follow a
conventional abstract structure, but is not bound to it. We encourage
creative, unconventional, and work-in-progress submissions, particularly
from early-career scholars. The addition of supplementary visual data such
as a poster or data excerpt is optional. The submissions should represent a
specific issue or challenge encountered in the participant’s visual

We are aware that not everyone will be able to use Google services due to
regional restrictions or privacy concerns. In those cases we invite
participants to submit directly by email vppecrea at gmail.com. The email
should contain following information: paper title, participant first and
last name, country of affiliation, affiliation, career stage, email
contact, names of co-authors, a 200-word description of the challenge, 1-2
visual materials (PDF, Word, or jpg) if applicable (this is optional), and
indicate if you would like to be considered for the special issue.

During the workshop, these challenges should be presented as short
presentations (7-10 minutes) in panel groups with an adjoining discussion.
These presentations do not need to follow conventional presentation formats
(creative and purely visual presentations are encouraged). Please note that
multi-author submissions are very much welcome, but due to the short nature
of lightning talks we ask that only one person (i.e. the submitting author)

Details on the presentation format and full programme will be released in
due time.

Workshop follow-up

Post-workshop, a summary (e.g. in the form of a co-authored “living
syllabus on visual politics and protest research'') will be created and
circulated amongst the participants and the wider public.

Participants will also be invited to join an informal follow-up meeting at
ECREA in Aarhus: “visual politics & protest coffee hour”.

Participants will have the opportunity to submit their full papers to a special
issue in Journal of Digital Social Research (https://www.jdsr.io/).
Extended abstracts of 500 words are due 1st December 2022. Interest in
submitting to the special issue should be indicated in the submission form.
More information on the special issue will follow in due course.

Further details

The pre-conference workshop is organised by the ECREA Visual Cultures
section (see https://visualculturesecrea.wordpress.com/) and will take
place online.


Pre-conference website: https://cutt.ly/visual-politics-ecrea

Email contact: vppecrea at gmail.com

Link to profile of keynote speaker:

Key dates 2022

1st June: pre-conference submission deadline

15th August: communication of acceptance

6th & 7th October: ECREA pre-conference on Visual Politics & Protest

19th to 22nd October: ECREA general conference

1st December 2022: special issue abstract deadline

Pre-conference team

Maria Schreiber, University of Salzburg

Suay Melisa Özkula, University of Trento

Tom Divon, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Danka Ninković Slavnić, University of Belgrade

Doron Altaratz, The Hadassah Academic College

Hadas Schlussel, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Suay M. Oezkula, on behalf of the pre-conference team
*Suay Melisa **Ö**zkula/**Oezkula*

Marie Sklodowska-Curie Research Fellow "DIGI-EMP"
University of Trento
Visiting Research Fellow - International Telecommunications Union

Recent work:

*Özkula, S. M., Reilly, P. J., & Hayes, J. (2022). Easy data, same
old platforms? A systematic review of digital activism methodologies.
Information, Communication & Society. **https://doi.org/*

*Özkula**, S. M. (2021). What is digital activism anyway? Social
constructions of the “digital” in contemporary activism. Journal of Digital
Social Research, 3(3), 60-84. https://doi.org/10.33621/jdsr.v3i3.44
<https://doi.org/10.33621/jdsr.v3i3.44> *

*Özkula, S. M. (2021). The problem of history in digital activism:
Ideological narratives in digital activism literature. First Monday, 26(8).

*Özkula, SM** (20 21). The Unmaking of Collective Action: Changing
Organizing Logics in Civil Society Organizations Through Social Media
Activism Culture. IJOC,
15(19). https://ijoc.org/index.php/ijoc/article/view/15930

Office: Room 318
SIS - School of International Studies
via Tommaso Gar, 14 I-38122 Trento
University of Trento, Italy

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