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#ALT-MKE Conference
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 Export to Your Calendar 4/30/2020 to 5/2/2020
When: Thursday, April 30, 2020
Where: University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Milwaukee, Wisconsin  53211
United States
Contact: Richard Grusin

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The Center for 21st Century Studies and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee will host this year’s annual conference, "#ALT-MKE," on April 30–May 2, 2020.

#ALT-MKE will highlight how the temporality and space of the ordinary city offers new epistemologies and practices that are engaged in the global struggle to combat racialized disinvestment, a fractured body politic, ecological crisis, and urban abandonment. The spectacles offered by the DNC–whether political, mediated, or financial in nature–lead only to institutional inaction and failure, wherein lie opportunities for ongoing forms of resistance to find new and stronger footings.

From the Situationists and Russian Constructivists, to suffragists, tactical urbanists, the Movement for Black Lives, and the Occupy movement, people have always imagined and sought new ways of life to challenge oppressive structures and violent erasure. Under the increasingly dire pressures of climate crisis, racial capitalism, ongoing settler displacement, destructive national politics, and crushing inequality, the time has come to reclaim our future by reframing these issues through the refocused lens of the 21st century city.

At the core of this investigation is the focus on reframing cities as political and ideological acts that hold within them normative values of aesthetics, power/resistance, public life, and citizenship. By inviting explorations of critical, decolonial, anti-racist politics, this conference hopes to bring together new forms of analysis, methods of urban historiography, organizing, and engaged forms of scholarship.

The conference seeks to highlight the undercommons and the counternarratives fomented in the ordinary life of spaces and places. The conference will ask how contested knowledges and stories of a city may be experienced across different and intersecting power relations that organize bodies and space. The conference hopes that accounts of everyday practices, local knowledges, and organizing will help illuminate how urban residents resist, adapt and reformat conventional structures of power, governance, and order. The conference does not expect to find a single solution, but to foster a variety of grounded strategies and projects that we aim to highlight, bring together, and learn from.

For more information on the conference, see #ALT-MKE

Proposals for presentations are being accepted until January 13, 2020. For more information, see the AFS Review


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