IIPC Debate 24 April (change of date and location)

IIPC Debate 120 MOVED TO 24 April, 2-4 pm (seminar room Arcanum A112, University of Turku)
Defining game genres: The perspective of cultural sociology

Assistant Professor Stanisław Krawczyk (University of Wrocław)

What is genre? Not any particular genre (RTS, campaign board game, horror table-top RPG, etc.), but genre itself? This is a key question to ask when we talk about game genres, and it is not asked often enough. In game studies and elsewhere, the most common assumption is that genres are sets of games. This approach – usually taken implicitly – may be called structural, as it emphasizes the structure of games themselves. One could also adopt a discursive approach, which treats genres solely as game labels, or parts of the discourse about games. In my talk, however, I will focus on a third option: a sociocultural approach, which defines genre as a set of games classified together by a social group (or groups). I will discuss the pros and cons of all three approaches and propose that we start using the sociocultural one more. I will also show how the latter approach is grounded in a more general theoretical tradition of cultural sociology.

Stanisław Krawczyk works as assistant professor at the Institute of Sociology, University of Wrocław. He is interested in science fiction studies, higher education studies, and the sociology of literature. As a game researcher, he is currently working on a cultural sociological approach to the history of the Witcher works and on the role of the English language in game studies in Poland.

IIPC Debates are free and open for everyone. Warm welcome!


IIPC Debate 24 February

IIPC Debate 119, Friday 24.2. 14-16. Room A270 (Arcanum, University of Turku & Online:

K-pop “dolls” and the question of authenticity

Associate Professor Aljosa Puzar, University of Ljubljana

This lecture will re-visit and re-work a decade-old theoretical description of female dollification in K-pop contexts, and beyond. Figurations of K-pop femininity and masculinity are conventionally and habitually related to the debates on “East Asian” female infantile cuteness and soft masculinity. As such, they offer a way into ongoing conversations on authenticity, glocality, and transnational qualities of the globalized K-pop on one hand, and on the other, require new critical feminist takes, preferably working beyond moral panic and dogmatism. The entire lecture is searching for the buried bodies of K-pop, relying on the traces of emic or local knowledge of South Korean “living dolls”, and it is based on the ethnographic archive. It will try to partly disentangle the South Korean paradox of secondary infantilization, interwoven with postfeminist re-sexualization of female performances and preferences. The initial debate of the interiorized western(ized) and male gaze, considered crucial in the early understanding of dollification, will be, therefore, expanded and amended, adjusting the model to the present transition from melodramatic to the hitherto unnamed structure of feeling sensed in South Korean (post)postfeminist public debate and private lives.


Aljosa Puzar /Aljoša Pužar/ (Ph.D. Rijeka, Ph.D. Cardiff) is Croatian-Italian-Slovenian cultural studies scholar, ethnographer, writer, and social critic. Associate Professor of Cultural studies and Urban Anthropology at the Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Ljubljana, Slovenia. From 2007 to 2016 he was teaching and researched at South Korean universities. His theories of dollification and performed cuteness are used in K-pop studies since 2011.

IIPC Debates are free and open for everyone. Warm welcome!

Music Research, Now! Programme Fri 27 January

On Friday January 27th 2023, the 12th annual Music Research, Now! symposium invites Turku-based researchers from whatever field of study, engaging with music or sound, to present their ongoing research.

The main purpose of the event is to facilitate networking among music researchers from various departments and units at the University of Turku, Åbo Akademi University, Turku University of Applied Sciences, Sibelius Museum, and other educational and cultural institutes in Turku. The presentations will be speed talks: a 10-minute presentation and 5 minutes for discussion. Organizer: The Department of Musicology at Åbo Akademi University, in collaboration with the Departments of Musicology and Cultural History and Music Education at the University of Turku.

See programme:


IIPC Debate 31 January

IIPC Debate 118

IIPC Debate 118, Tuesday 31.1. 14-16. Online:

Passcode: 825708

Feminisms in mediated popular music

Associate Professor Ann Werner (Södertörn University, Sweden)

Feminists have always performed, recorded and listened to popular music but in the 2010’s feminist messages and self-proclaimed feminist artists increasingly influenced the mainstream of popular music. Successful artists claimed to be feminist and feminist issues were thematized in popular music through lyrics, music videos, #MeToo activism and artist personas. But what kind of feminisms have been popularized in the music industries? Feminist politics and feminist theory are fields with large internal differences, and battles. This paper is based on Werner’s recent book Feminism and Gender Politics in Mediated Popular Music (Bloomsbury 2022) and investigates how postfeminism, gender equality feminism and intersectional feminism have taken place in mediatized popular music. It does so through examples of music documentaries on Netflix by Beyoncé, Lady Gaga and Taylor Swift, a music industry #MeToo petition, Keychange, a project aiming to put minority genders on stage and gender mainstreaming efforts by music streaming services. The examples are, in this presentation, discussed as influenced by different types of feminisms, with different gender political results.


Ann Werner’s dissertation in Cultural Studies examined teenage girls’ uses of popular music. Her research interests are in gender, music and media and she has published widely on dancing videos on YouTube, streaming and algorithmic culture, gendered uses of music, and gender in the music industries drawing on feminist theory and cultural studies. She has previously co-authored the book Streaming Music (Routledge 2017) and published in academic journals such as Popular Communication and IASPM Journal. She is currently employed as Associate Professor in Gender Studies at Södertörn University and as Senior Lecturer in Musicology at Uppsala University, Sweden.

 Stardom Studies Revisited: seminar 2.12.2022

Welcome to a half-day seminar on stars and stardom:

Stardom Studies Revisited
Friday 2.12.2022, 12.00-16.00 (UTC+2)
University of Turku, Arcanum ARC355/357 and Zoom

John Richardson: opening words
John Mercer: Acting Like a Man: Rock Hudson’s Performance of Masculinity
Hannu Salmi: Yves Montand’s Tour of the Eastern Bloc: Transnational Stardom in 1956/57

coffee break

Nadya Ostroff: The Three Perspectives of Stardom: A Tool to Examine Stardom
Meri Kytö: Zeki Müren’s Voice, Polite Affectivity and Cultural Intimacy
Erik Steinskog: Beyoncé and Afrofuturism

You can join us in person or via Zoom:
Meeting ID: 684 1548 6235

The seminar is organized by the International Institute for Popular Culture (IIPC) and the research project Movie Making Finland.

IIPC Debate 8 December

IPC Debate 117, Thursday 8.12. 16-18, Cal1 (Calonia Building, University of Turku).

Write it Down! Transmitting the Feminist Protocols of Social Change

Associate Professor Carrie Rentschler (McGill University)

Abstract: Based on a current project that digitally documents and archives student activism against gender violence on campus – the Feminist Student News And Protest (SNAP) Archive – this talk focuses on the identification and creation of “grey literatures” as key media artifacts of feminist cultural memory.  Student activists document their protocols in “how-to” guides, training manuals, and anti-oppression curricula that model practice and thinking, in ways that become transmissible to others. Drawing on the manuals we have collected, and other internal documentation around social change work, this talk analyzes the forms of “feminist counter-conduct” (Murphy 2012, 29) and standards of practice that students and other folks formulate for how to, for instance, work with survivors of gender violence, among other forms of advocacy labor. Through the materials, we trace the histories of situated feminist social change through the popular (and not-so-popular) media practices they create to transmit their practices over time, to unknown agents in the future.

Bio: Carrie Rentschler is an Associate Professor in the Department of Art History and Communication Studies and an Associate Member of the Institute for Gender, Sexuality & Feminist Studies at McGill University.  Her research examines feminist movements, social media and mobile networking technologies, and the politics of response, care, and witnessing around gender violence. She is the author of Second Wounds: Victims’ Rights and the Media (Duke UP, 2011) and co-editor of Girlhood and the Politics of Place (Berghahn Books, 2016). Her current projects examine emerging models of social change around bystander media cultures, and the digital archiving of student media activism. A researcher with Type 1 diabetes, she also studies technology and self-quantification among Type 1 diabetics.

Music Research, Now! / Musiikintutkimus, Nyt! / Musikforskning, Nu!

January 27, 2023
Åbo Akademi
Helikon, Arken (Fabriksgatan 6)

Hello, it’s me. -Adele

The 12th annual Music Research, Now! symposium invites Turku-based researchers from whatever field of study, engaging with music or sound, to present their ongoing research at this event. We are aiming for an in-person meeting (with sensible health precautions in place), and the event is as per usual free of charge.

The main purpose of the event is to facilitate networking among music researchers from various departments and units at the University of Turku, Åbo Akademi University, Turku University of Applied Sciences, Sibelius Museum, and other educational and cultural institutes in Turku. We especially encourage scholars from such fields as, but not limited to, musicology, music education, cultural history, art and media studies, cultural studies, sociology, philosophy, gender studies, and archive work, to actively participate in the event. The symposium is an opportunity for a researcher to receive feedback from the entire pool of music/sound researchers working in the city.

This cfp is written in English, but papers are invited in Finnish and Swedish in addition to English. Make sure your proposed headline is in the same language you intend to present with!

The presentations will be speed talks: a 10-minute presentation and 5 minutes for discussion.

In order to register for Music Research, Now! please fill in the online registration form at:


The registration deadline is Friday January 13, 2023.

The seminar program will be sent to the speakers via email.
For more information, please write to the event organizer: anna-elena.paakkola@abo.fi


IIPC Debate 28 September

IIPC Debate 116, Wednesday 28.9. 16-18, Arcanum A355 (Arcanuminkuja 1, University of Turku).

The New Urban Aesthetic: Digital Experiences of Urban Change

Professor Monica Degen (Brunel University, UK)

In this talk I will introduce some of the key ideas and case studies from our book (co-written with Professor Gillian Rose, Oxford University) “The New Urban Aesthetic: Digital Experiences of Urban Change”. I will explore the ways in which digital technologies have transformed the everyday life, branding and redevelopment of contemporary cities. Drawing on two case studies from Doha (Qatar) and Smithfield Market (London, UK), I will suggest that as cities are reconfigured by the deployment of digital technologies from Instagram to computer-generated advertising images, particular sensory embodied constellations are emerging. This digitally mediated re-configuration of embodied experience is what this book calls “the new urban aesthetic”, and I will describe two of its possible expressions: glamorous and dramatic.


Dr Monica Degen is a Professor in Urban Cultural Studies at Brunel University London. Her research focuses on the politics of space with a particular interest in the ways sensory, temporal and emotional dimensions underpin urban culture, urban redevelopment and everyday politics in the city. In 2016/17 she was awarded British Academy Fellowship to research ‘Timescapes of Urban Change’, she has published widely in a range of international journals, her most recent publication is The New Urban Aesthetic: Digital Experiences of Urban Change (Bloomsbury 2022)

To find out more about her work and projects see:




IIPC Debate 3 May

IIPC Debate 115, Tuesday 3.5. 14-16, Arcanum 3rd floor, room A355/357 (Arcanuminkuja 1, University of Turku). Also online: https://utu.zoom.us/j/63586646433, Passcode: 009540

Words, words, words: reflections on a life in music journalism

Professor Emeritus Simon Frith (University of Edinburgh)

The usual story of popular music journalism is a familiar narrative of rise and fall, from emergence in the 1950s to decline in the 2000s.  But this reflects the experience of a particular kind of music journalist, the rock critic.  In this talk I start from a different perspective: making and listening to music always involves conversations.  We need, then, to consider the supply and demand of words about music and how such words are shaped. What kinds of words are needed?  What are their effects?  Why and how do they change? In exploring these questions I will draw on my own experiences of music commerce, the publishing industry, fandom, radio listening, gig going and the academy.

Simon Frith held the Tovey Chair of Music at the University of Edinburgh from 2005-2017, the culmination of an academic career that started out with a PhD in Sociology.  He combined his academic work with journalism, writing for a variety of magazines and newspapers in the UK and the USA.  He was the first rock critic of the London Sunday Times and chaired the judges of the Mercury Music Prize from 1992-2016. He contributed the chapter ‘Writing about Popular Music’ to The Cambridge History of Music Criticism.