Critiquing Culture
The Cultural Studies Student Organizing Committee, George Mason University (Fairfax, Virginia)
Saturday, July 1, 2017

The Cultural Studies Student Organizing Committee (SOC) at George Mason University invites paper proposals for our 11th annual Cultural Studies Graduate Student Conference. The conference will take place on Saturday, October 7th 2017 at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia.


The theme of this year’s conference of “Social Movements and Resistance” reflects the particularly potent political moment in which we are currently situated. To that end, we strongly encourage submissions that address, critique, or otherwise analyze contemporary and historical developments of, and responses to, activism and political uncertainty.

This year’s conference will feature a plenary panel addressing contemporary sites of social justice and activism, with details and a final list of speakers to be released closer to the event date.


The Cultural Studies program at George Mason University is committed to the analysis and critique of culture. Cultural Studies examines cultural objects as products of the wider social, historical, economic and political conditions. Thus its interests lay both in understanding processes of cultural production as well as discovering the effects of culture at sites of reception. In particular, Cultural Studies focuses on power relations and inequalities, which shape the horizon of possibilities for any cultural object at hand, be it a political discourse, an economic model, or a mass cultural product. Towards this project, we recognize the value of a range of critical approaches including Marxist political economy, poststructuralism, feminism, critical theory and postcolonial studies. While the objects of Cultural Studies vary widely, the field aims at political relevance and efficacy.

In an attempt to broaden the community of scholars working in precisely this interdisciplinary vein, the Cultural Studies Student Organizing Committee at GMU invites graduate students to submit research papers for a conference specifically oriented toward the examination of cultural objects, through a variety of critical lenses. We encourage the submission of papers related to the following broad themes:

  • Political Economy
  • Mass & Popular Culture
  • Gender & Sexuality
  • Race & Ethnicity
  • Visual Culture

Abstracts of no more than 300 words and a current CV should be sent to by July 1st, 2017. Please include presentation title, presenter's name, institutional affiliation, contact information, A/V requests, and any special needs required in the email. Abstracts should be sent as .doc or .rtf file attachments.

Job, fellowship, and CFP listings are services that offered by the American Studies Association to support its members in exploring professional opportunities in American studies. Any questions should be directed to the program, department, or center that has posted the opportunity.