Department of Humanities and Social Sciences
Indian Institute of Technology Madras
Centre for Performance Research and
Cultural Studies in South Asia (C PRACSIS)

International Conference on
Contextualizing the ‘Contemporary’ in Culture
February 1 & 2, 2011
‘Contemporary’ is widely perceived as a pre-given conceptual category. The paradigm shift effected by ‘contemporary’ intellectual introgressions and art practices has evinced that the notion of contemporaneity is a contested domain. The ‘Contemporary’ is formulated and perpetuated through the sedimentation of multifarious dynamics of culture, history, power, geography, movements, politics, and epistemes.
The international conference, “Contextualizing the ‘Contemporary’ in Culture” inquires into the evolution and sustenance of ‘the contemporary’ in Art, Performance, Film, Music, Architecture, Media and Lifestyle. This conference attempts to explore the notion through the broad frameworks of:
1. Metro-scapes: City and Imagination
2. Peripheral Aesthetics: The rise of the suburban and the new
3. The liminal space: Small town/rural
4. The shifting pedagogies
5. Art preservation, transmission and dissemination
6. Managing ‘the contemporary’
7. Histories and the future: Defining ‘the contemporary’
8. Digital imagination
9. Virtuality of the contemporary
10. The popular versus the contemporary
C PRACSIS attempts to raise questions in these areas — questions not confined to disciplinary boundaries — with an international conference entitled “Contextualising the ‘Contemporary’ in Culture” during February 1 & 2, 2011 at the IC & SR under the auspices of the IIT Madras.
The proposed international conference features keynote addresses by Arjun Appadurai (Senior Advisor for Global Initiatives & Distinguished Professorship as the John Dewey Professor in the Social Sciences at The New School in New York City), Howard Caygill (Professor of Cultural History at Goldsmiths College, University of London), Kancha Ilaiah (Chairman of the Dept. of Political Science at Osmania University) and Abir Mallik, (Professor, School of Industrial Design, Georgia Institute of Technology).
Abstracts of the papers not exceeding 250 words along with a brief narrative bio (not exceeding 50 words) are to be sent to Mr. Syam Sudhakar ( [Phone: +919884453153] or Dr. Kavitha Balakrishnan ( (coordinators) and to on or before November 30, 2010. Abstracts should be submitted with the following information and in this order: a) author(s); b) affiliation; c) email address; d) telephone numbers; e) title of abstract; f) body of abstract; g) key words.
Please use plain text (Times Roman 12; single spaced) for the submission of abstracts and abstain from using footnotes and any special formatting. Only one paper per author will be accepted for presentation in the conference sessions, and at least one author for each paper must be at the conference in order to present the paper. All proposals are subject to peer review. The receipt of abstracts will be confirmed immediately and the selected paperpresenters will be notified soon. The conference fee must be remitted on or before December 15 (academics & professionals Rs.1500/US$40; research students Rs.800). Further details regarding travel and accommodation etc. are available at The last date for the submission of final papers will be January 10, 2011.
The Centre for Performance Research and Cultural Studies in South Asia [C PRACSIS /si:praksiz/] is a non-profit organization dedicated to research and innovations in visual media, culture and performance, located in India, and supported by an international academic community. For details visit
Dr. Jyotirmaya Tripathy,
Associate Professor,
Dept. of Humanities and Social Sciences,
IIT Madras.
(Local Coordinator)