Angus Cameron – Leicester University
Ian Bruff – Edge Hill University
The rejection across the critical social sciences of environmental determinism in all its guises means that the material foundation of politics has tended to be sidelined. Theoretical and empirical priority has, as a consequence, been given to processes of structuration, social construction, planning, autopoesis, dialectics and so on. Whilst material processes are implied in many of these narratives, the nature of materiality itself is not always explored or accorded agency. Despite this emphasis, the political, economic and social domains continue to be shaped and constrained – historically and contemporaneously – by the material. This can include the physical aspects of life (e.g. biofuel vs. food) and the wider physical environment (climate change, hurricane Katrina, etc.) but also includes other non- or less physical material orders (money, virtual materials and places, spiritual domains, etc. (Miller 2007)). The purpose of this panel is to explore critically both the political economies of materiality and the materialities of political economies.
Topics of relevance might include:
The nature of political materiality
The material construal of political possibilities
Political economies of artefacts
Virtuality and virtualism vs. materiality
Please send abstracts (200 words or less) to firstname.lastname@example.org by 25th September 2008.