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Black Portraiture[s] IV: The Color of Silence - Call for Papers / Call for Proposals
Event Timing: March 15-17, 2018.
Event Address: Havana, Cuba

CONTEXT AND HISTORY OF BLACK PORTRAITURE[S]
BLACK PORTRAITURE[S] IV: The Color of Silence is the eighth conference in a series of international conversations to assess and break new ground in the fields of African, African American and African diasporic art and art history. This forum also provides various approaches to interpreting the representations, ambiguous meanings, and erasures of the black body in visual, social, material and expressive cultures. Over a span of fifteen years, artists, activists, patrons, musicians, writers, collectives, journalists, educators and scholars have come from across the globe to reflect on why and how conceptions of “blackness” shape historical imaginaries and subvert political ideologies. This is an opportunity to situate not only various macro-histories but also the micro-histories that inform a genealogy of innovative interrogations into the social structures that articulate—or silence—black subjectivity.

The conference aims to explore the aesthetic representation of the frameworks and social relations in which black bodies are seen and unseen, in which black lives are lived freely and under constraint, and most crucially, the representation of black subjects themselves. Examples abound throughout the African diaspora of how the humanity of black subjects is rendered invisible or hyper-visible—or both simultaneously (Cuba’s “antiracism,” Brazil’s “racial democracy,” South Africa’s “rainbow nation,” Jamaica’s “out of many, one people” motto, and the “postracial” U.S. are just a few examples). We invite papers that interrogate the complex intersections of race, history, culture and art.

In past conferences, participants have offered generative exchanges on everything from tourism and pop culture (art, fashion, music, dance, film), to revolutionary movements, pedagogy, the history of colonization and its impact on cultural expression, the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade and the contemporary entanglements of the global marketplace. With this latest iteration of Black Portraitures, we seek papers and panel proposals that probe and build off of these themes and provide new methodologies, and even new questions, for the 21st century.

Deadline for submissions: September 15, 2017
Notice of acceptance: October 27, 2017

All proposals must be submitted through completion of this online form.

The conference will be held on Thursday through Saturday, March 15-17, 2018, in Havana, Cuba. As the status of the US/Cuba relations are in flux, more information about travel will be available when the new Administration's policies are enacted. We will keep you posted.

Please note that as with most academic conferences, we are unable to provide institutional funding for travel to Black Portraitures.

Black Portraiture[s] IV is a collaboration with the U.S. Ambassador to Cuba, Jeffrey DeLaurentis; Hutchins Center for African & African American Research, Harvard University; New York University’s LaPietra Dialogues, Tisch School of the Arts, and the Institute for African American Affairs.

Please contact blackportraitures@gmail.com with questions.

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