I will speak at BGHS(Bielefeld Graduate School in History and Sociology)’s Third Annual Seminar "Control's other side(s)", taking place at Bielefeld University from 8th until the 10th of February 2012.
My paper is entitled "Street Art – questioning power and control in urban spaces".
We encounter forms of control in all realms of social life: internalized
moral attitudes on the individual level; national or pre-national rules
of law; governmental and non-governmental regulatory agencies attempting
to contain potentially harmful developments. An observation of the
process of how control is set up and maintained allows us to get a
better understanding of the institutionalisation of social order. At the
same time, the analysis of control may help to learn something about the
so-ciocultural justifications, which enable such an order. Important
changes in the mechanisms of control in modernity can be traced back to
these discursive developments.
Despite general compliance with controlling structures, there appears to
be a frame of action for 'criti-cal reflection' towards the established
institutions of control. Control can never be seized as a totality and
no attempt at control is without contradictions and ambivalences. Even
if dominant claims over control are not entirely balanced by resistance,
oppositional and everyday practices disturb the se-quences of control
regimes by deliberately or unintentionally introducing functional
mistakes, inconse-quentiality, open or concealed critique. An analysis
of control therefore forces us to study its limits: Where are measures
of control thought to be unsuccessful? Where do attempts to obtain
control fail because no internalisation of norms or legitimization of
existing norms has taken place? How are new forms of control possible
despite the danger that they themselves will be doubted or rejected?
Where does the seemingly constant need for control come from? Which
conflicts and tensions constitute different forms of relationships
between controlling structures and the objects of the control? And
finally: Where and how is control modified by its resisting powers?
The interdisciplinary Annual Seminar of the BGHS this year focuses on
the forces that limit, irritate, or modify control. The empirical or
conceptual contributions should tackle the paradoxes, contradictions and
ambivalences regarding control and discuss the social significance of
control and its other side.The conference language is English.
Key Note Speaker (oppening lecture):
Andreas Glaeser (University of Chicago)