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Cultural Studies Association of Australia
Melbourne, December 2002

Cultural Studies Association of Australia Conference
December 5-7, 2002
University of Melbourne, Australia

Call For Papers

The Cultural Studies Program at the University of Melbourne is pleased to announce
a call for papers for the 2002 conference of the Cultural Studies Association of

The CSAA conference is a disciplinary gathering for cultural studies researchers
and scholars in Australia. To better accommodate the varied research interests of
the field, the 2002 conference will be run with both a general and themed stream.
Presentations on any aspect of cultural studies are welcome in the general stream.

The themed section will consist of keynotes and plenaries addressing the

Conference Theme: Ute Culture: the utility of culture and the uses of cultural

The question of culture and its uses is at the heart of cultural studies as both
an intellectual and critical enterprise. Its foundational move to reconceive
culture as a network of lived -- rather than just textual -- practices with social
-- rather than just aesthetic -- meanings has necessarily oriented cultural
studies toward a central concern with the utilitarian. Whether in its pioneering
analyses of working class life and urban subcultures; its general address of the
popular and the everyday, its concern with cultural productions of identity; or
its attention to social institutions, industry and governmentality; cultural
studies has sought to understand and explore culture as it is actively and
variously used. In turn, cultural studies has been equally engaged with questions
of its own utility. From its broad status as a politically-motivated critical
practice to its recent forays into policy studies and the development of
neo-vocational dialogues with creative industries, cultural studies has been
defined, understood and "sold" as an intellectual project with real world uses and

The utilitarian impulse of cultural studies has been an undoubted critical
strength, enabling new forms and applications of cultural critique. It has,
however, been equally perceived as a limitation that, by some accounts, instates a
populist relativism and, by others, a wholesale adoption and academic translation
of consumerist imperatives. What sense can we make of the shifting intersections
between cultural studies and notions of use? Is the value of cultural studies
fully dependent on its own utility? What will be the uses of cultural studies as
we move into the 21st century?

The Conference committee invites proposals for panels, symposia, individual papers
or other formats to be included in the general stream. Panels that bring together
a number of papers based on a common theme or topic are especially encouraged.

Proposals (of no more than 250 words) should be directed via email to the
Organising Committee at
Submissions close July 26, 2002.

Musicological Society of Australia (MSA)
GPO Box 2404, Canberra ACT 2601, AUSTRALIA
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