CfP: Aesthetics of Popular Culture 2018 (Warsaw)


Aesthetics of Popular Culture Conference
4th-6th May, 2018
University of Warsaw

David Davies (McGill University, Montreal)
Tomas Kulka (Charles University, Prague)

The deadline for submission is February 1, 2018.

Granting that we are constantly bombarded with various forms of popular culture with little room for reprieve, how is it that the popular discourse of philosophical aesthetics seems to offer little insight to the increasingly pervasive artist renderings of this ‘lower’ art form? Recently, aestheticians and philosophers have been turning their gaze to new domains of human creative activities, i.e., comics, advertisements, pornography, popular music, video games, etc. Yet – the question still burns regarding the relationship between aesthetics of the canonical, high culture and low, popular culture. Do they have different methodologies or just different subjects of inquiry? We warmly invite papers that reconsider the value and methods of aesthetics of popular culture and art – broadly understood – by exploring new concepts and fields of inquiry.

Given the explorative mandate of the papers — no specific methodology or philosophical orientation is required in submissions. Selected papers will be published in a special issue of the newly emerged peer- and blind-reviewed open access online journal Popular Inquiry: The Journal of Kitsch, Camp and Mass Culture

The conferences will be hosted the University of Warsaw, Poland and is co-organized with Alto University, Finland.

Suggested topics (which should not be seen as restrictive, but more as an invitation):

  • avant-garde popular culture
  • art from the point of view of popular culture studies
  • aesthetic properties and concepts of popular culture
  • popular culture, aesthetic education and art schools
  • official popular culture (nazism, socialism, etc.)
  • popular culture in post-communist countries
  • the relation of aesthetics and cultural studies
  • popular culture as a shared outsider (Americanization)
  • European aesthetics of popular culture
  • kitsch, trash, camp
  • video games, digital art, popular film & television
  • urban/public space
  • the art/craft distinction

Please send a title and a 500 word abstract, suitable for blind review, in either Word or PDF format, to For each talk, there will be time for a 30-minute presentation, with another 15 minutes designated for discussion. The deadline for submission is February 1, 2018. Notification of acceptance will be sent by February 20, 2018. The conference fee for both established academics and PhD students is 40 Euros. There is also a separate (optional) fee for the conference dinner of 50 Euros.
Steering Committee: Adam Andrzejewski (University of Warsaw), Karan August (independent scholar), Max Ryynänen (Aalto University), Mateusz Salwa (University of Warsaw).