The First Issue: Soapbox: Journal for Cultural Analysis 1.1 “Practices of Listening”
For the first issue of Soapbox, a graduate journal for cultural analysis, we invited PhD candidates and young researchers to submit proposals that explore listening as a critical practice. With this topic, we aim to bring together accounts of listening as both a method and object of analysis, including everyday practices and new modes of research that articulate who or what can listen and who or what can be heard.
In an age characterised by overabundant information and a cacophony of voices, attention is increasingly a matter of selection inseparable from politics. Traditional structures that amplify dominant expressions are being contested by the rise of large-scale communication platforms, which complicates the distribution of heard voices. Listening critically, therefore, calls for an examination of the spaces – digital, urban, or discursive – in which the voices of minorities are either muted or amplified.
An attentiveness to the practices of listening also takes seriously the idea that epistemological agency is not limited to the human subject, but extends across biological, technical, and inorganic bodies. By listening to the polyphonic assemblage of humans and non-humans alike, this issue aims to politicise listening not only in the sense of interpersonal communication but also as a broader cultural logic that creates platforms for some and silences others.
The issue will be published at the end of January 2019, featuring articles that develop concepts of listening in art, street protest, technology, and literature.
We also welcome submissions to our website Soapboxjournal.com, where a variety of styles and formats is encouraged. Please get in touch to pitch new ideas or existing projects for us to feature there.