CFP–new Journal of Urban Cultural Studies launched

Visit the new Journal of Urban Cultural Studies site here.

Call for Papers

The Journal of Urban Cultural Studies is a new peer-reviewed publication cutting across both the humanities and the social sciences in order to better understand the culture(s) of cities. The journal is open to studies that deal with culture, urban spaces and forms of urbanized consciousness the world over.

Although we embrace a broad definition of urban cultural studies, we are particularly interested in submissions that give equal weight to: a) one or more aspects of urban studies (everyday life, built environment, architecture, city planning, identity formation, transportation…) and b) analysis of one or more specific forms of cultural/textual production (literature, film, graphic novels, music, art, graffiti, videogames, online or virtual space…) in relation to a given urban space or spaces.

Essays of 7,000-10,000 words (including works cited and notes) should be sent by attachment to the Editor at JUCS is also open to proposals of special issues by guest editors working individually or in teams of two. All citations in other languages should be translated into English for the journal’s international reading public, in addition to including the original text.

While the journal does not publish book reviews, we do publish review essays—which should discuss 3-5 recent books on a shared topic or theme (or place) and run from 2,500 to 4,000 words. Review essays of urban-themed installations or other works of art are also welcome. These essays will be reviewed in house. Given our visual focus, we are interested in original, unpublished artwork on the topic of cities and in publishing articles accompanied by images where appropriate.

We encourage a variety of approaches to the urban phenomenon—the strengths of the editorial board run from urban geography to literature and film, photography and videogames, gender and sexuality, creative economy, popular music, Marxist approaches, fashion, urban planning, anthropology, sociology, Deaf culture, built environment, philosophy, architecture, detective fiction and noir, and more…

Lisabö’s Urban Soundscapes (music and the city)

Even if you don’t understand the Spanish narration/Basque lyrics, take note of the TWO DRUM KITS in the video–hard sound, great music, and most relevant of all, the title of the album is EZLEKUAK (non-cities) a reference (on purpose or not…) to Marc Augé’s essential reading Non-Places: An Anthropology of Supermodernity [here’s a brief review in The Guardian].

This is one of my favorite bands [here are some more song samples on myspace]. They are from the Basque city of Irun and claim as influences such small-label Anglophone bands as Low, Godspeed You Black Emperor!, Shellac, June of 44, and Fugazi.

I’m hoping to publish on the band with 33 1/3’s acclaimed series of books on popular music, but since that is incredibly competitive (and since the Basque theme may put the proposal at a disadvantage–despite the increasing focus on books written in a more academic style), I might have to find another venue. Here’s a draft introduction I wrote for a wider audience:

Lisabö’s Urban Soundscapes

Betwixt, between and across the Pyrenees—the mountain range separating Spain and France—there lie the seven lands of the Basque Country, or Euskal Herria as it is known in the Basque language. None other than noted cineaste Orson Welles (the director of Citizen Kane and The Magnificent Ambersons) traveled there in the 1950s as part of a BBC television series titled Around the World. Placing his camera “directly on an international border” of a “little-known corner of Europe,” [link to youtube video] Continue reading