2017 12 17 jagoda2

In the thematic issue of the journal “Philological Studies. Literary Research”, we will investigate various presentations of space in order to understand, how places are enmeshed in ideology. Although every spacial form is ideological, since its cultural representation is at the same time a form of ideologization, we are interested in the space which is particularized by its geographic and historical identity. We will discuss the directions of changes and the character of processes taking place in  Central and Eastern Europe and the Balkans during the 20th and 21st centuries.  We will focus on cultural representations of space,  how social emotions are agitated by those representations, and how representations create imaginarium of the society and affect social and national identification. Our areas of interest include spacial cases which provoke controversies and disputes as their interpretation is at the same time subjected to the ideologization. Due to the multicultural historical past, spaces have multiple identities that are neither “frozen” in a stable form nor described once for all - they change in time and their reinterpretations are influenced by politics and history. Consciousness that those areas do not have one identity can be shadowed or - on the contrary – it can be an important interpretative factor. Because of the reasons mentioned above spaces are often the subject of disagreement – among different groups within one nation, but divided by different world views and/or they become an object of rivalry between two different nations.

Different forms of space analysis, as well as various interpretations of significance of space in social and political life have been  presented in numerous anthropological, sociological and philosophical works (see: Marc Augé, Gilles Deleuze Michel Foucault, Timothy Ingold, Bruno Latour, Doreen Massey, Peter Sloterdijk and Bernhard Waldenfels). We would like to encourage the authors to think about problems that are of particular importance to  us, such as:

•    Symbolic disputes over space, or antagonized forms of space representation associated with old and new national conflicts.
•    Relationships between space representation and historical politics, memory politics and education.
•    Spaces of expulsions and the new places of residence as objects of memory and influential factors in identity construction.
•    Ways of constructing the representation of space, desired for national consciousness and also forms of their instrumentalization.
•    Counter-representations of space, that is, the representations excluded from the dominant discourse concerning space or eliminated from the discourse for ideological reasons.
•    Erasing or preserving traces of complex multinational history of spaces which  became a part of another country as a result of the 20th century border shifting.

We will be interested in texts in the semiotic sense: literary, nonliterary, representations of the iconographic spheres and historical works.

The subject of the analysis will comprise cultural texts created in the 20th and 21th century, pertaining to various regions of East-Central Europe and the Balkans.

An interdisciplinary approach to spatial issues will be especially appreciated. We are interested in the literary, cultural and historical discourse on space. We suggest using the tools of anthropologically oriented literary studies and the new historicism to interpret different types of cultural texts.

The purpose of the publication is the debate on narratives sustained – conscious or unconscious – in the literary, cultural and historical discourse to mark various spaces of East-Central Europe and the Balkans ideologically. We are going to take a look at mechanisms of space ideologization. These mechanisms seem to be common towards disparate places of the macro-regions in question, although the ways of their ideologization can vary. To achieve this goal, we plan to divide the issue into three thematic unites:

I.    The (symbolic) appropriation of space
The unit devoted to reflection on how during the last hundred years:
- dominant discourse has manifested itself in the intercultural dimension (e.g. in Polish-Ukrainian, Slovak-Hungarian, Czech-German relations);
- dominant discourse has manifested itself in the intracultural dimension (due to the change of system of power and authorities in East-Central Europe and the Balkans after 1918, 1945, and 1989).
II.    The (symbolic) rivalry for space
The unit dedicated to reflection on contemporary situations when rivals for a space have comparable symbolic potentials:
- in the intercultural dimension (when a place marked by multicultural heritage, situated within new political borders after 1989 constitutes a bone of contention);
- in the intracultural dimension (when it comes to disputes between different political forces within one state).
III.    The (symbolic) retrieving / obtaining of space
The unit focused on:
- counter-narratives on space, i.e. discourses which present viewpoints of non-dominant groups;
- instrumental use of counter-narratives to consolidate dominant discourse.

Articles should be in English. The deadline for article submission is 31 March 2018 (12-16 pages / 1800 characters per page, conforming to the Chicago Manual of Style). The title of the paper should be followed by keywords (max. 5). Please also attach a short abstract of the paper (half a page). Finally, we do not accept work which has already been published or is being considered for publication elsewhere.

The editors of the thematic issue:
Alina Molisak PhD
Danuta Sosnowska Prof.
Jagoda Wierzejska PhD