viernes, 11 de marzo de 2016

Languages of Economic Crises: An International Colloquium at the York University

The Languages of Economic Crises

In recent years the popular lexicon relating to the economy and economic crises has grown. Sub-prime, austerity and bailout come to mind amidst the neologisms of our economic age. Indeed, economic turbulence enters into public consciousness in a manner which is inextricably bound to language - for in this case, taking from Marx and Engels’ adage that ‘language is as old consciousness,’ language is as new as consciousness itself. But language is not merely about new words, metaphors and attempts to capture the technical complexity of our current state of financialized capitalism. And economic crises run deeper than market crashes and panic in the financial core.

This international colloquium entitled Languages of Economic Crises aims to create a constructive and interdisciplinary discussion of the ways in which we respond to diverse forms of economic crisis. For crises are perpetuated and are resisted not only by economic calculation in boardrooms and legislatures, but in and through language itself. Many people feel very disenfranchised from economic debate because they are excluded by the elitist language of economics (either the language of mathematics or the complex terminology of academic texts). Further, from the cyclical crises of nineteenth century Europe, to the global crisis which began in 2007, we see that crises fill the collective psyche with images of catastrophe, uncertainty and even destruction. As Keith Tribe (2015) argued with respect to the word ‘economy,’ the term crisis itself has “a shifting valency of economic allusions and imagery.” Responses to crisis thus often go beyond the discourse of catastrophe and open up to creative and empowering movements. In textual manifestations - found in the archives, economic texts and the popular press - we see the creation of a new lexicon and metaphorical register. As a discourse of resistance, the response to crises often becomes a language of recovery - manifesting materially in recovered factories, reclaimed land and alternative economies. And as a voice of dissent and protest, so notable in recent popular and institutional movements against austerity and debt in Spain, Portugal and Greece as a response to the Eurozone crisis, we see the creation of a new language of resistance grounded in thinking the economy otherwise.

March 17-18, 2016
South 802 Ross Building


Thursday March 17, 2016

7pm- 9pm
Language, crises and gender

In conversation with Katherine Gibson (of JK Gibson-Graham), University of Western Sydney
Introduction by Phillip Kelly (York University, Geography)

Friday March 18, 2016
11am – 3pm

11:00 – 12:00
Constituting and recovering crises: Spain and Argentina

Jose Luis Carretero Miramar, Peleando a la contra (Madrid);
Marcelo Vieta (University of Toronto, OISE)

Break 12 – 12:15 (Refreshments and Snacks)

12:15 – 1:15
The metaphors of crisis

Daniele Besomi (University of Lausanne, Centre Walras-Pareto);
Sonya Scott (York University, Social Science)

Break 1:15 – 1:30 (Refreshments and Snacks)

1:30 – 2:30
Language from below, mobilizing out of crises: Greece and beyond

Peter Bratsis (City University of New York, Political Science);
David McNally (York University, Political Science)

Discussion and W
rap-up 2:30 – 3:00

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