Cfp: EASA 2020 discard panels

16th EASA Biennial Conference
EASA2020: New anthropological horizons in and beyond Europe
21-24 July 2020 in Lisbon
ISCTE-University Institute of Lisbon and ICS-Institute of Social Sciences, University of Lisbon

P085 Do-It-Yourself in Europe across East/West and North/South divides: Material culture of (post)socialist and capitalist prosumption

Convenors: Karel Šima (Charles University)
Petr Gibas (Institute of Sociology, Czech Academy of Sciences)

The panel focuses on the material culture of Do-It-Yourself (DIY) and what it can tell us about the changes societies in Europe has been undergoing since the 1980s characterised by the beginnings of profound transformations to both state socialism and capitalism the outcomes of which reverberate at present. Although DIY has been studied from various viewpoints, anthropological concern with material culture as a prism to understand both everyday experience and societal transformation represent an approach not fully exploited with respect to DIY. The panel seeks contributions that concentrate on the materiality of DIY and follow the things created, altered and used in DIY activities, explore practices and emotions in which they are immersed, and use these in order to generate novel understanding of the profound changes and transformations of contemporary societies. We understand DIY as encompassing complex self-led manual projects as well as minor work and repairs which are carried out in one´s free time, but which comprise also extended networks of people, eg. families, groups of neighbours, hobbyists or activists. We want to ask how these relations enter material ecologies of things and how they shape politics of private, semi-public and public space. On this ground, we want to explore and compare the divides between the East and the West shaped by the legacies of the Iron Curtain as well as the divides between the North and the South informed by the last economic crisis and ensuing austerity policies.

P092 Excess and Absence in Domestic Life

Convenors: Hannah Gould (University of Melbourne)
Cynthia Sear (University of Melbourne )
Julie Valk (UCL)

At the height of consumer capitalism and its environmental and social consequences, the accumulation of domestic stuff and the question of what to do with it has come to capture national conversations. Presented as antidote to theses excesses, minimalism has emerged as a new (or renewed) lifestyle and aesthetic trend. This movement alternatively draws on ideas of Eastern spirituality (as in the KonMari method) or on Western pathologies of mental dis/order (Kilroy-Marac 2016) to actively curate ‘absence’ as a moral value. At the same time, and often in the same context, austerity politics has given rise to practices of budgeting and coupon cutting, while heightened environmental concerns have birthed new sustainable or waste-free lifestyles. As a result, practices now classed as ‘excess’, including conspicuous consumption, prepping, and hoarding are frequently subject to denunciation and voyeurism. Whether elected or enforced, these lifestyles speak to how domestic space is being reconfigured in relation to new economic and environmental pressures. In this panel, we ask: how do people acquire, manage, or reduce the material stuff that has come to dominate the domestic sphere in the 21st century? What can the material processes of new lifestyle practices tell us about how life is politicised and experienced today? This panel will bring together diverse ethnographic studies to examine how the values of excess and absence are produced within new political contexts and changing climates. In particular, we invite papers that explore these themes in relation to class, ethnicity, gender, and family dynamics.


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