New call for papers Ekphrasis. Images, Cinema, Theory, Media

Vol. 17, Issue 1/2017

The Ghost in the Cinema Machine

Contemporary representations of artificial intelligence in science fiction films, literature and visual arts

From Metropolis (1927) to Ex Machina (2015), from A Space Odyssey (1968) to The Matrix (1999), from Blade Runner (1982) to Her (2013), science fiction cinema has imagined countless modes of narrating this uncanny interaction between man and machine, one so strange yet so familiar to any smartphone user.

 

To a certain degree Baudrillard’s premise has proven prophetic: with the rapid advance of technologies the science fiction universe, once placed in a distant future, was challenged by the present day realities and the unexpected fulfillment of the technological utopias.

 

Some questions are following from this transformation: Are we witnessing the radical transformation of the sci-fi genre, or the end the classical “artificial intelligence” trope? Has scie-fi been reduced to a mere projection/allegory of the “real” world? What is the future of the genre, after assimilating fantasy (Star Wars), horror, or dystopia? What is the future of sci-fi narratives in the wake of blockbusters like Gravity, Tv series such as Black Mirror or Humans or auteur films such as Her? What is left of the realm of extrapolation?

 

These are just a couple of questions of the current issue of Ekphrasis, which will investigate what is left of the traditional imagination of science fiction after being surpassed by the evolution of hyperreality/ virtual reality and other simulated spaces.

Ekphrasis is seeking papers that address the issue of technology in general and artificial intelligence in particular and who analyze how these topics are addressed by the contemporary representations in cinema, literature and visual arts. man versus simulated consciousness (artificial intelligence), man versus his mirror technical image-body-mind, human consciousness versus simulated consciousness.

 

Topics may include, but are not restricted to:

Human consciousness vs simulated consciousness

Human agency vs artificial intelligence

Technophobic/technophilic visions on artificial intelligence

Realism and the future of science fiction genre

Dystopian and utopian visions on posthumanism

Data made flesh vs flesh made data

Transhumanist utopia

Mind-transplant immortality

Cyber-Armageddon

 

Issue editors: Andrei Simuţ and Doru Pop



Deadline for abstracts of up to 300 words: March 30th 2017.

Final submission is due May 20th 2017.

The articles should be written in English or French (for English, please use the MLA citation style and documenting sources). 



For the final essay, the word limit is 5000-8000 words of text (including references).

Please include a summary and key-words

The articles should be original material not published in any other media before.

Graduate students are particularly encouraged to submit papers.

Please send all correspondence to andrei.simut@gmail.com and popdoru@gmail.com

Ekphrasis is a peer-reviewed academic journal, edited by the Faculty of Theatre and Television, “Babes-Bolyai” University, Cluj-Napoca, Romania.

For more information and submission guidelines, please visit:

http://ekphrasisjournal.ro/index.php?p=call

 

Vol. 18, Issue 2/2017

 

Transnational cinema dialogues - Regional Cinemas in Central and Eastern Europe 

The regional cinemas of Europe have been either competing, ignoring or mirroring each other, in a global competition for recognition, positioning and international relevance.

The main questions of this issue of Ekphrasis are focusing on the common elements between the regional national cinemas. What makes them different? Is there anything like a Central and East European Cinema, or a wider, European filmmaking tradition? What has happened after the EU integration of these Eastern European countries in terms of cultural strategies and how did this impacted film industry, film consumption and film reception. Can we go beyond the story of the parallel discourses, of nations living next to each other without exchanging ideas. Although these cinemas have created their own cultural identity and aesthetic specificity, still the most important question is if they are more different than similar. There has always been a historical dialogue between these cinema cultures, where history was both a challenge and a barrier between the them, thus what are the common traits of these identify formation practices?

Discussing the cultural similarities and identifying the common grounds will allow questioning the transition from the homogenized cinema and cultural environments of the Socialist and, previously Stalinist, movie making, how did the film industries of the two countries have followed different paths. How did these transformations influenced the two cultural environments?

 

Main topics for debates and papers (non exclusive):

 

Nation representation and identity formation in contemporary cinema

 

The problematic relationship between the film cultures in Central and Eastern Europe

 

Re-configuring our common past and projecting a future

 

Memory of the past and the re-inventing of history through cinema

 

Issues of imagining the common past and the problems that stem from differences of perspective

 

Do we tell different stories, or are the recent movies showing that there are related narratives, that shared imaginaries and common visualities are in motion?

 

How is nostalgia manifested in the two cinema cultures, what is the relationship with the past?

 

Abandoning national narratives and the integration in the global and European discourses

 

Films as expressions of specific cultural experiences and their impact on society

 

Searching for parallels between the two film industries and film cultures

 

The themes and problems that face cinema makers in both countries – similarities/ differences

 

Trauma and dealing with the recent past

 

Exploring the common spaces and geographic tropes

 

 

 

Issue editor: Doru Pop

 



 

Deadline for abstracts of up to 300 words: May 30th 2017.

Final submission is due August 15th 2017.

The articles should be written in English or French (for English, please use the MLA citation style and documenting sources). 

 

 

For the final essay, the word limit is 5000-8000 words of text (including references).

 

Please include a summary and key-words

 

The articles should be original material not published in any other media before.

 

Graduate students are particularly encouraged to submit papers.

 

Please send all correspondence doru.pop@ubbcluj.ro; popdoru@gmail.com

 

Ekphrasis is a peer-reviewed academic journal, edited by the Faculty of Theatre and Television, “Babes-Bolyai” University, Cluj-Napoca, Romania.

 

For more information and submission guidelines, please visit:

 

http://ekphrasisjournal.ro/index.php?p=call