CfP: Covering the Arab Spring / Kopenhagen (1.-2. September 2011)

Noch bis zum 30 Juni können Abstracts eingereicht werden für folgende Konferenz in Kopenhagen, die sich mit dem Wechselverhältnis von Medien und dem Arabischen Frühling befasst:


The University of Copenhagen invites proposals for the two day conference:

(Copenhagen, September 1-2, 2011)

This conference seeks to bring together scholars from various disciplines to exchange their descriptions and analyses of different national perspectives in the coverage of events in Arab countries throughout the first half of the year 2011 that have been referred to as the Arab Spring.

Media coverage and international visibility played a big role not only for the sake of being informed about events in another city, nation or region but it was a major catalyst and tool for those demonstrating in different Arab cities. Being visible in national or international media, on facebook and twitter was one of the major means for protestor’s visibility in their struggle for both national and international support.

Perception and media coverage of the developments in Arab countries in early 2011 in Europe and the US have been shaped by national frameworks of Islam perception, especially during the first days and weeks of the uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt. As the unrests gained momentum and affected more and more countries, the frames for presenting and analyzing them in media and politics were challenged and finally changed considerably.

Thus, the main objective of the conference, and subsequent journal proposal, is to shed light on the role of TV, press, and social media in political unrests and the articulation or ignorance of frustrations of Arab populations.

Main aims of the conference:

Find a way to structure and analyze the media coverage of the uprisings in the Arab World 2011 in order to enhance academic research on media and Islam.
Provide mapping of traditional/new/social media and mediatized space in the Middle East under the revolutions and also to provide grounds for a critical reflection with regard to research strategies and methodologies which are being applied to the analysis of interaction between media, politics and new cultural practices.
Publish substantial papers in an special edition of a peer reviewed Journal.

This approach raises questions related to media and opinion formation as well as a number of methodological questions of general interest for media and area studies. It connects research interests on media in the Middle East and on the perception of Islam in Europe.

These topics will be investigated at several panels and a podium discussion in order to share the academic discussion with a broader audience in Denmark.

The following questions will be addressed:

What were the dominant and shifting issues in the representations and political assessment of current events?

Islamic extremism, destabilization of the Middle East, rise of the Muslim brotherhood, Islam and democracy, dictatorships, social media, youth culture, demographic pressure, Western loyalties and interests.

How is the ongoing development of the Arab Spring reflected in choice and change of perspective (within and outside the region)?

How did traditional media use social media as source of information? (Interaction and dependence of different types of media)

In what ways have agents of change been using media in order to support their cause?

How did agents make use of different media simultaneously realizing media’s different potentials?

What was the role of experts of Islam, terrorism and radicalism, on social media and the Middle East in media coverage?

In what way were researchers, scholars, and journalists included in the explanation and contextualization of current developments?

What role did the national situations and environments for media have on the coverage?

What was the role of foreign correspondents in covering current events?

In what way did restrictions of the freedom of press hinder reporters?

How has media changed during the Arab Spring and to which degree have they met the requests for accountability and transparency?

Submission of proposals:
Abstracts about 300 words should be sent by 30th June 2011 to both: Riem Spielhaus (rsp@teol.ku.dk) & Ehab Galal (ehab@hum.ku.dk)
Abstract, following this order: author(s), affiliation, email address, title of abstract, body of abstract,
Short CV (max. 150 words).

For contributions to the special edition a full paper of 6000 words should be submitted no later than 1st October 2011 and will then be subject to peer reviews and possible revisions. The selection of the papers will be based on quality and relevance to the conference themes.

Only accepted papers will get an answer by the date mentioned below. Selected papers will be published in a special volume in English.

Submission of abstracts: 30th June 2011.
Notification of acceptance of abstracts: 15th July 2011.
Submission of full papers: 1st October 2011.

To send proposals and for additional information please contact the organizers:

Riem Spielhaus
Research Fellow at the Centre for European
Islamic Thought
Department of Systematic Theology
University of Copenhagen
Koebmagergade 46
DK-1150 Copenhagen K.
E-mail: rsp@teol.ku.dk

Ehab Galal
Assistant Professor in Modern Islam and Middle Eastern Studies
Department for Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies
University of Copenhagen
Snorresgade 17-19
DK-2300 Copenhagen S
E-mail: ehab@hum.ku.dk