For the next issue of Soapbox we invite young researchers and established scholars alike to submit academic essays or creative work that critically engages with the theme of interface. We are inviting extended proposals (500-1000 words) that follow the MLA formatting and referencing style. We don't charge a submission fee.
Send your proposal to firstname.lastname@example.org by December 5th, 2021.*
An interface is a space of contact and interconnection. Thinking within but also beyond a media studies framework, we can understand our lives to be constantly mediated by interfaces of one form or another. Broadly speaking, they serve as an intermediary between an individual and a system, or alternatively conceptualised, between experience and infrastructure. Interfaces mediate between a body and its environment, private and public, subject and object. In each instance, the interface enables interaction and activity. Think of the movement from print to digital media, the structural design of spaces and buildings, the reception of knowledge from an academic paper: as we move through the world we encounter and interact with a range of interfaces that delineate the possibilities of experience in profound ways. Their politics can be intentionally designed or inherently implicated in their operations. As such, interfaces are cultural as well as political: they connect us to a matrix of histories and structures while their imbrication in power can afford and advance the needs of one group at the expense of another.
WITHIN AND BEYOND A DEFINITION
in·ter·face | \ ˈin-tər-ˌfās \
In a highly mediated world, the most immediate image of an interface is as a programmed screen or device that facilitates a connection between a real-time user and a digital non-user. Here, the interface is a site of communication and translation, but also the boundary that differentiates two bodies, spaces, or phases. Can the interface operate as a verb beyond its noun form?
We invite you to think through and beyond the somatechnic view of the interface, allowing perspectives that explore the aesthetic, infrastructural, affective, material, and political dimensions of the interfaces that give shape to contemporary experience.
* We do not charge a submission fee
We are thrilled to announce the launch of our issue 2.0 Contamination.
A year ago, we singled out contamination as the common thread traversing the events, conversations, and research unfolding within our networks. At the time, contamination had not yet embedded itself into our thoughts and actions as a virus overwriting all else. There is not only a conceptual need but a physical inevitability to re-configure the meaning and effects of ‘contamination’.
Please join us for a conversation with a group of our contributors, where they will present their unique approaches to ‘contamination.’ Taking into account how the past months may have influenced their views, the discussion will reflect on the concepts of: home, intimacy, and the commons.
Moderated by Lijuan Klassen
You can pre-order 2.0 Contamination here.
Thanks to the contributors, peer reviewers, collaborators, and friends whose continuous work and patience in the oddest of times made this possible.
Special thanks to our brilliant designers: Stepan Lipatov and Sissel V. Møller.
With the kind support of the NICA (Netherland Institute for Cultural Analysis) and the Uva department of Literary Studies.