CfP SHARP 2022: Three days left for proposals

There are just three days left to hand in a proposal for SHARP 2022 in Amsterdam. Please see the website of SHARP 2022 | Power of the Written Word for more information on the conference and how to send in a proposal.

SHARP 2022 in Amsterdam (July 11th–15th, 2022).

The written word has immense power. Manuscripts, books, newspapers, pamphlets, internet and even graffiti can define and spread knowledge as well as form tools for emancipation and liberation. Yet it can also break down communities and fuel discontent. Some argue that new technologies and strategies have enhanced the power of the written word in a negative sense. Others answer that fake news, manipulation and ever-changing technologies have always played a role in history. Moreover, the power of the written word seems threatened by the preponderance of visual technologies in the spread of information. The conference theme explores how and to what extent the power of the written word has manifested itself in past, present and future. Scholars from a range of disciplines are invited to elaborate on the subject – from text creation, illumination and editing to dissemination and distribution of written and printed documents. Big data, digital humanities, codicology, history – whatever the method, we invite you to examine the theme from its beginnings in Sumeria and far into the future. What is the power of the written word? What has it achieved?

Suggested topics:

  • The role of manuscripts, printed books, magazines, journals, newspapers, blogs, websites, or tweets in social movements (moral, intellectual, artistic, political, popular, religious) 
  • The potentially emancipatory power of reading and writing, literacy
  • Books and manuscripts as material traces
    • (i) of people and their interests (authors, publishers, readers), or
    • (ii) of geopolitical policy (propaganda, diplomacy, granting programs, cultural industries) 
  • Libraries, the role of the librarian today 
  • Emerging and evolving figures in the book trade (e-publishers, e-pirates, agents, consultants, bloggers) 
  • Disinformation, censorship and deceit through the ages 
  • Clandestine presses 
  • Art and oppression (e.g. Dada, the Russian structuralists) 
  • Social media and visual communication in relation to the written word 
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