e-alloa on Sat, 3 Mar 2007 18:23:32 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime-ann> Call for Papers: ATOPIA 11


-the polylogic e-zine-

Call for Papers

ATOPIA 11: straits/estrechos/stretti/engführungen/détroits


Neoliberal rhetoric would have us believe that we are living in a
borderless world of free circulation; a world in which goods and persons
may migrate and fluctuate across the globe almost as if they were
particles striving for perfect distribution in perfect homeostatic
aggregations.  However, the exchange of goods (both material and
immaterial), of means, and of people across very real physical
geographies hardly corresponds to such an image.  The flows of global
goods and humans converge at certain physical and systemic straits where
these fluxes condense, swell, bottleneck, and become tangible.  The
geophysical limitations of these maritime and terrestrial straits do not
simply indicate that a global market past physical restriction has yet
to be fully realized; they are also the guarantors of that market
despite the inequalities it produces.

Often enough, straits imply a political canalization and thus become an
instrument of identification and selection, which itself has a long
history.  After the initial euphoria of the age of discovery, passengers
leaving for the New World from Spanish ports of call had to go through
precise identification practices as early as the mid-16th century,
practices that their European descendants renewed in the 20th century
when they were gathered at entry-points like Ellis Island. 

Thus, since the early modern period, the more geographical mobility has
become available, the more its political implications have become
evident.  Suez and Panama not only stand for further achievements on the
way to unimpeded world-wide circulation, they have also become markers
of strict regulation.  These narrows ?zones of passage and transit
spaces that simultaneously circumscribe and restrict exchange? ought to
be part of our attention now even more than ever, as they are the place
where the actual mechanisms of globalization become visible. 


Please write a short proposal for your submission (max 300 words),
indicating in which of the ATOPIA languages you will write the article
(English, French, German, Italian or Spanish) and submit it to the Board
of Editors until April 15th 2007.

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