From: ESRCs East West Programme [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
On Behalf Of Serguei A. Oushakine
Sent: Sunday, March 15, 2009 10:47 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: CFP: Secrecy (New York University, May 2, 2009)
This conference is about...Secrecy
and it will take place at...New York University on May 2, 2009
Call for Papers
If one of secrecy's main functions is, as has been often argued, to
distinguish a community of insiders from clueless outsiders, what would an
interdisciplinary effort to understand secrecy look like? We invite you to
have a hand at this question, hone new ones, and spill the secrets of your
discipline by participating in Secrecy: An Interdisciplinary Conference to
be held at New York University on Saturday, May 2, 2009. While many
disciplines and modes of reading, writing, listening and looking-from
hermeneutics to psychoanalysis, criminology to radiology, classical
melodrama to samizdat literature and cinematic depth style-privilege the
latent over the manifest, the aesthetics and politics of secrecy vary
widely and shift intriguingly.
So what happens when secrecy's prime location, framed dramatically behind an
iron curtain, teeming with invisible cities, camps, roads and dead ends, is
suddenly open to tourism, investment, archival research, indifference, and
CIA interrogation bases? Thus dislocated, where does secrecy go? What kinds
of transformations does it undergo on the way?
Does the cult of secrecy still flourish best, as Hannah Arendt suggested
more than fifty years ago, when the ultimate secret is that there is no
secret at all? Is secrecy then about fabricating as much as it is about
withholding, not telling, censoring, or holding in reserve? Other possible
topics can range from (and beyond) conspiracy theories to the spectacle of
secrecy, confession and unmasking, cabinets noirs, invisible inks, and
We invite graduate students and faculty to send a short proposal (about 150
words) for a twenty minute presentation to [log in to unmask] or
[log in to unmask] by April 1, 2009.
Professor Yuri Tsivian, University of Chicago "Robespierre Has Been Lost:
Secret Mantraps of Film History"
The conference is co-sponsored by The Department of Comparative Literature
and The Department of Russian and Slavic Studies at New York University
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