CFP Invisible Republic : Music, Lettrism, Avant-Gardes

Invisible Republic: Music, Lettrism, Avant-Gardes – International Conference on Music, Avant-Gardes and Counterculture
CFP deadline: May 25
Conference dates: October 25-27
https://invisiblerepublic.info/
University of Lisbon, School of Arts and Humanities and Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology (MAAT)

In Invisible Republic: Bob Dylan’s Basement Tapes (1997), Greil Marcus charts a countercultural sound map, a kind of laboratory where a new language is being forged. This is where, Marcus argues, we can locate the true voice of the century, a new consciousness, the alchemy of an undiscovered country. From this starting-point, we propose a journey into the tangled relationship between music, the avant-gardes and counterculture.

In 1942, Isidore Isou, a Jew from Romania, created in Bucharest an artistic and cultural trend that claimed for a “new republic” of letters. He brought it to Paris in 1945, and this became “Lettrism”, one of the most inventive but also one of the most unknown movements of the post-war avant-gardes. In 1947, he published a manifesto, an introduction to a new poetry and a new music that set forth Lettrism as a general movement of creation, a poetry liberated from words and syntax, and a number of propositions that constitute a fundamental historical link between the modern and the contemporary.

Lettrism, it has been argued, was the progenitor of future upheavals and revolts, such as May ‘68, Punk, Situationism, Fluxus, among others. Music and sound, in this context, are powerful instruments of destruction and/or reconfiguration of language and the Arts. The connection between writing and auditory experience becomes the experience itself – back to Dylan: the lab of the basement tapes.

The present conference aims at exploring and bringing to the fore the “invisible republics” of culture, the ephemeral, the suppressed, the unconformity of artistic and political undercurrents. Above all, it asks how these separate geographical territories speak to each other, and how this might reshape our historical understanding of European and American modernity.

The idea of unknown countries and invisible republics that lie beneath our eyes, a subterranean dimension that is striving to take its own form and structure in order to produce something new, are part of contemporary forms of protest and rehabilitation. Lettrism and post-war Avant-Gardes reflected the general insatisfaction of times but they still produced a fair amount of formidable works and legacy. The present conference aims at exploring these connections and dimensions, putting apparently distant groups and movements in unexpected harmony, a harmony made not of a continuous progress, but instead full of contradictions, setbacks and surprises.

The Conference is hosted by the American Studies Research Group of the University of Lisbon Centre for English Studies (ULICES/CEAUL), Portugal, in collaboration with the Centre for Postcolonial Studies, School of Advanced Study, University of London.

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Organizing Committee
Anabela Duarte
(click for more info)
Andrew Hussey
Executive Committee

Ana Barroso
Maria Ramalho
Patricia Lobo
Zuzanne Sanches
Scientific Committee

Frédéric Acquaviva

Andrew Hussey

Anabela Duarte

Teresa Cid

Margarida Vale de Gato

Edgardo Medeiros

Heitor Alvelos
Apresentação

A idéia de países desconhecidos e repúblicas invisíveis que se encontram sob os nossos olhos, uma dimensão subterrânea que se esforça para tomar a sua própria forma e estrutura para produzir algo novo, fazem parte das formas contemporâneas de protesto e reabilitação. O Letrismo e as Vanguardas do pós-guerra reflectiram a insatisfação geral dos tempos, mas ainda assim, produziram um legado considerável de obras magníficas. Este congresso tem como objetivo explorar essas conexões e dimensões, colocando grupos e movimentos aparentemente distantes num espaço de harmonia inesperada, uma harmonia não feita de um progresso contínuo, mas cheia de contradições, retrocessos e surpresas.

O congresso, cujo título remete para a obra Invisible Republic: Bob Dylan’s Basement Tapes (1997) de Greil Marcus, em jeito de homenagem a figuras de união entre música e poesia, decorrerá de 25 a 27 de Outubro, 2017, e é organizado pelo Grupo de Estudos Americanos do Centro de Estudos Anglísticos da Universidade de Lisboa (CEAUL/ ULICES), em colaboração com o Centro de Estudos Pós-Coloniais da Escola de Estudos Avançados da Universidade de Londres.
Comissão Organizadora
Anabela Duarte
(click for more info)
Andrew Hussey
Comissão Executiva

Ana Barroso
Maria Ramalho
Patricia Lobo
Zuzanne Sanches
Comissão Científica

Frédéric Acquaviva

Andrew Hussey

Anabela Duarte

Teresa Cid

Margarida Vale de Gato

Edgardo Medeiros

Heitor Alvelos