IIPC Debate 25 March

IIPC Debate 68

Wed 25 March, 12-2 pm, Janus Hall (Kaivokatu 12, Turku)

Dr Jozef Kovalcik (The Academy of Fine Arts and Design Bratislava)
The high culture – useless concept?

The concept of high culture has been refused and criticized as elitist, hierarchical, modernistic or exclusive since sixties. High culture lost its dominant position within many western societies and it is not understood as a domain with inherent aesthetic and moral value. Moreover, it has an ironical meaning when we talk about some petit bourgeois artistic ambitions or snobbish preferences. Instead of concept high culture are used terms as art, alternative, non-commercial or even avant-garde culture. This is not to say that high culture has disappeared. It usually emerges when we start to compare traditional institutions – art schools and academies, galleries, theatres, publishers, operas – but also small cultural activities and projects with popular culture. Not to mention when we apply for foundation or when we try to defend existence of artistic study programs. Moreover, these very various and different practices, forms, texts, artworks and audiences are not any more connected to one particular class – dominant or dominated. In my lecture I will try to describe some consequences of this situation and outline possible answers for the following questions: could we consider the category of “high culture” as a valid descriptive category or is better to use it as political term? The category of high culture had unitary form which was derived form idea of exclusiveness, autonomy and/or best aesthetic quality, is there any (if any) entity which could unify so various contemporary practices? An opposition to popular culture was understood as a very core of identity of high culture, is it tenable to construct this domain alike?

Jozef Kovalcik (PhD) is a Slovakian philosopher who has focused mainly on design and popular culture in his scholarly work. He has been the vice rector of The Academy of Fine Arts and Design Bratislava and is a founding member of the Slovakian society for aesthetics. Spring 2015 Kovalcik published the book Aesthetics of Popular Culture, edited together with Max Ryynänen, that contained texts from various European aestheticians.

Warm welcome


Call for Papers: EUPOP 2015

Humboldt University of Berlin, July 29th – 31st 2015

Deadline: Monday, April 27th, 2015

Individual paper and panel contributions are welcomed for the fourth annual international conference of the European Popular Culture Association (EPCA), to be held at the Humboldt University of Berlin (Hauptgebäude, Unter den Linden 6, Berlin) from July 29th – 31st 2015.

EUPOP 2015 will explore European popular culture in all its various forms. This could include European Film (past and present), Television, Music, Celebrity, The Body, Fashion, New Media, Comics and Popular Literature, Queer Studies, Sport, Heritage, and Curation.

The closing date for this call is Monday the 27th April, 2015.

There will be opportunities for networking, publishing, and developing caucus groups within the EPCA. Presenters at EUPOP 2015 will be encouraged to develop their papers for publication in a number of Intellect journals, including the EPCA’s Journal of European Popular Culture. Journal editors will be working closely with strand convenors – a full list of Intellect journals is available at:


Papers and Complete Panels for all strands will be subject to peer review. Proposals for individual presentations must not exceed 20 minutes in length, and those for panels – not more than 90 minutes. In the latter case, please provide a short description of the panel along with individual abstracts. Poster presentations and video projections are also warmly welcomed.

Proposals comprising a 300 word abstract, your full name, affiliation, and contact details (as a Word-file attachment, not a PDF) should be submitted to Pamela Church-Gibson (europop@arts.ac.uk – the same address is available for general administrative queries) until April 27, 2015. Receipt of proposals will be acknowledged via e-mail.

The conference draft program will be announced at the end of May, 2015, along with the conference registration and accommodation details.

Keynote speakers: EPCA President Pamela Church-Gibson (University of the Arts, London), Professor Susanna Paasonen (Media Studies & IIPC, University of Turku), and Professor John Richardson (Musicology & IIPC, University of Turku).

The European Popular Culture Association

The European Popular Culture Association (EPCA) promotes the study of popular culture from, in, and about Europe. Popular culture involves a wide range of activities, material forms and audiences. EPCA aims to examine and discuss these different aspects as they relate both to Europe and to Europeans across the globe, whether contemporary or historical.

EUPOP 2015 is organised by:

European Popular Culture Association (EPCA): http://epcablog.wordpress.com/

International Institute for Popular Culture (IIPC): http://iipc.utu.fi/

Kind Regards,

EPCA President, Pamela Church Gibson, p.church-gibson@fashion.arts.ac.uk

Dr Markus Heide (Swedish Institute of North American Studies, Uppsala University, and Humboldt University Berlin), markus.heide@engelska.uu.se

EPCA Vice-President, PCA-Finland Director, Adjunct Professor Kari Kallioniemi, kakallio@utu.fi

EPCA Secretary, IIPC Coordinator, Dr Kimi Kärki, kierka@utu.fi

IIPC Debate 18 March

IIPC Debate 67

Wed 18 March, 12-2 pm, Janus Hall (Kaivokatu 12, Turku)

This is a double debate!

Dr Mafalda Stasi (University of Coventry)
Now You See It, Now You Don’t: Representations of Asexuality in Media Fandom
Dr Gemma Commane (University of Coventry)
Topographies of Acceptance: a story of a researchers sexual fluidity, positionality and self-identity in kinky-queer spaces

Mafalda Stasi is a senior lecturer in media at Coventry University and a Fulbright alumna. Her research is in the areas of fan, gender and queer studies. Previous publications in these fields include contributions to Fan Fiction and Fan Communities in the Age of the Internet (Hellekson and Busse 2006 (Eds)), Men and Masculinities (2013) and Participations (2014). Dr Stasi is currently working on developing the concept of the ‘sexed fan’ through emerging representations of gender and sexuality in media fan fiction, on new forms of online fan engagement, and on fan-based research methods.For more details, http://mafaldastasi.com/

Dr Gemma Commane is a Lecturer in Media in the Department of Media within the School of Art and Design at Coventry University. The main focus of her research is on areas of social exclusion, specifically in relation to youth subcultures, sexual deviancy, intoxication and pleasure, place and class, and gender non-conformity in alternative lifestyles. Gemma’s research interests and teaching specialisms include subcultures, youth and deviancy, fetish and BDSM clubbing cultures, LGBTQ, sexualities, class and inequality, creative protest, burlesque striptease, body modification, alternative femininities and ethnography. Gemma is currently working on several areas of research, including: ethnography and affective research, researcher positionality in sensitive research, bad girls and burlesque, and rollerderby and life history. Gemma is a reviewer for YOUNG: Nordic Journal of Youth Studies, Journal of Youth Studies, and SAGE Open. She is also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA) and a member of MeCCSA.

IIPC Visiting Professor Gil Rodman teaches in April & May

IIPC Visiting Professor Gil Rodman (University of Minnesota) teaches a seminar entitled “Cultural Studies: Some Questions” (5 ECTS) in April/May. The syllabus and the readings are available on Dropbox after you have enrolled or expressed interest (see the instructions below).

The seminar will take place on
Tuesday 21 April 4-8 pm
Tuesday  28 April 4-8 pm
Tuesday 5 May 4-8 pm
Place: seminar room Salonki V108, department of Musicology.

Rodman also gives two IIPC debate lectures:

IIPC debate: “Notes on Reconstructing ‘the Popular’”
Thu 16 April, 2-4 pm, Janus Hall

IIPC Debate: “Lions and Writers and Birds, Oh My!: The Racialized Biases of Copyright”
Mon 11 May, 2-4 pm, Mikro Auditorio

GIL RODMAN is Associate Professor of Communication Studies at the University of Minnesota, US.  He is the author of Why Cultural Studies? (Wiley Blackwell, 2015), Elvis After Elvis (Routledge, 1996), editor of The Race and Media Reader (Routledge, 2014), and co-editor of Race in Cyberspace (Routledge, 2000).  He is currently working on two book projects: an introduction to the work of Stuart Hall, and a racial history of copyright in the US.

If you want to attend the seminar, please send an e-mail to Kimi Kärki (kierka@utu.fi) to register. You can of course attend the debates even if you don’t participate in the seminar.

IIPC Debate 11 March

IIPC Debate 66
Wed 11 March. 2-4 pm (Arje Scheinin Hall, Dentalia Building, University of Turku)
Pamela Church-Gibson (London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London, UK)
Anna Karenina on Screen, 1935–2012: Costume, Stardom, Celebrity, and Changing Patterns of Consumption

Since the earliest days of cinema, film and fashion have had a close and even symbiotic relationship, which has been strengthened by each new technological development, as we will see in the course of this lecture. Questions of stardom, gender, fashion and consumption are addressed in this investigation of three films made across an eighty-year period. All three films star leading actresses of their day, who were popular for their personal style as well as for their on-screen performances; all three actresses were dressed for the screen by leading designers. The tracing of the changes within the presentation of the same heroine at different moments in time raises important questions around gender and reception. The paper closes with an investigation of the genre in the age of viral fashion film, digital platforms and celebrity culture.

Pamela Church-Gibson is a Reader in Cultural and Historical Studies at London College of Fashion. Her research interests cover film and fashion, history and heritage, gender and spectacle, cities and consumption. She is the head of the MA program in Fashion and Film, and the Principal Editor of the referee publication Film, Fashion & Consumption. Pamela Church-Gibson has published widely on fashion and visual culture. Her latest monograph Fashion & Celebrity Culture (Berg 2012) explores the intersections between fashion, film and celebrity culture. She is currently working on a history of fashion advertising.

IIPC Debate 2 March

IIPC Debate 65
Mon 2 March, 2-4, Janus Hall (Kaivokatu 12, Turku)
Dr Toni-Matti Karjalainen (Aalto University School of Business)
Raskaan sarjan kulttuurivientiä: Näkökulmia Suomalaisen hevimetallin kansainvälistymiseen ja kaupallisuuteen

Debatissa käsitellään suomalaisen metallin vientiä ja erityispiirteitä, niin historiallisen kehityksen kuin nykytilanteenkin kautta. Millainen on hevimetallin rooli Suomen maabrändin rakentajana ja kulttuuriviennin kulmakivenä? Entä mitkä ovat suomalaisen musiikkiviennin toimintatavat ja käytännöt?
Taiteen tohtori Toni-Matti Karjalainen toimii akatemiatutkijana Aalto-yliopiston kauppakorkeakoulussa Helsingissä, pääasiallisena tutkimusaiheenaan hevimetalli ja kulttuuriset narratiivit rock-musiikkiteollisuudessa. Muiden julkaisuiden ohessa hän on ollut toimittamassa “Pelisilmää, Sävelkorvaa” -kirjaa (Talentum, 2014), joka tarkastelee suomalaista musiikki- ja pelivientiä. Karjalainen myös isännöin Modern Heavy Metal -nimistä kansainvälistä tutkimuskonferenssia Helsingissä kesäkuussa 2015. IIPC on konferenssin osajärjestäjä.

Ambiguous Heritage of the Second World War in Popular Culture

IIPC Seminar

Time: Saturday, February 28, 10:15–12:00

Place: Lecture Hall Janus (Artium Building, Sirkkala, Kaivokatu 12)

Opening words by Professor of Cultural History Hannu Salmi (University of Turku)
Dr Peter Webb (University of Cambridge)
Dr Joana Brites (University of Coimbra)
Dr Jonas Linderoth (University of Gothenburg)
Dr Kari Kallioniemi (University of Turku)
Dr Kimi Kärki (University of Turku)

The dark legacy of the Second World War, fascism, continues to allure and entice to this day. This dark side of the twentieth-century in European cultural memory has found a new life in various social practices, media and popular culture. The cultural symbols of Nazism and fascism have been circulated in the media over and over again, and connected with varied, often contradictory webs of significance.

The seminar opens the IIPC-coordinated effort to create a project for the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 Framework program, to explore the topic of fascism and popular culture. Visiting scholars from three universities involved with the project will be presenting their take on the topic of ambiguous heritage of the Second World War.

PETER WEBB is a lecturer in the Department of Sociology at the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of Fitzwilliam College. He specializes in research into popular and contemporary music, subcultures, globalization, new media technology, politics, cultural and social theory.

JOANA BRITES is a full-time Invited Assistant Professor of Contemporary Art, Theory of Art, Art History Research Methodologies at the Faculty of Art and Humanities of the University of Coimbra, Portugal. Her research focuses on the relationship between fascism and modernism, totalitarian art and spheres and mechanisms of artistic control.

JONAS LINDEROTH is a professor at the Department of Education, Communication and Learning, University of Gothenburg, Sweden. Jonas’s academic interest is about perception, learning and cognition during gameplay. In his talk, Jonas will talk about the Limits of play.

KARI KALLIONIEMI is the vice-director of IIPC and an adjunct professor at the Department of Cultural History in University of Turku. He will be offering some thoughts on the fascinated revulsion and fascist imagery in popular culture.

KIMI KÄRKI is the coordinator of IIPC at the Department of Cultural History, University of Turku. He will consider the ‘Northernness’ of extreme metal culture.