About the conference – University of Copenhagen

About the conference

33 Nordic Ethnology and Folklore Conference. August 18-21, 2015. Copenhagen University

"CO" – Co-productions, collaborations, contestations coming together in Copenhagen

Taking inspiration from the conference location of CO-penhagen, the Öresund Region, and the conference being a result of a CO-llaboration between ethnologists and folklorists from both sides of the Sound, we hereby invite our Nordic colleagues to reflect upon different forms and inflections of CO in both historic and contemporary contexts. 

CO is the English language prefix meaning with, together, joint, or jointly. It points in the direction of partners or assistants – as in co-authors or cohabitants, but can even indicate a relationship including a subordinate, as in a co-pilot or co-driver. The overall idea of the conference is to explore the analytical, methodological and theoretical potentials of the prefix CO. What does it actually mean when cultural analysts state that people and objects co-constitute each other in everyday practices? How do we engage in collaboration in our research practices as well as in the field as a means of generating empirical material? What exactly is co-produced in our analyses, and who and what takes part in such a co-production? What is a collaborative analysis, how is it done, and where are the potential pitfalls?

In contemporary discourse terms that involve CO are often used to evoke  positive associations, implying  synergy effect and new openings to creativity as people intermix and share ideas. In current user-involving studies an idea of innovation as a conflict-free zone often is implied. "CO-terms" might also evoke nostalgia, a longing for a space in time where Gemeinschaft rather than Gesellschaft was predominant. But what types of frictions lurk beneath the surface of this positive imagery – in a contemporary as well as a historical context? CO is also integral to such words as “coerce” and “collision”, which signal a more troublesome type of being together. Or perhaps they are entwined?  If CO seems to spur us to think of people, ideas, objects, and processes becoming, relating and working smoothly together, simply adding an “n” to CO brings us to “CON” and things of a more conflicting nature. Thus we also invite to investigations of CO(N) within the cultural world of conflicts, contestations, and condemnation.

Please join us in COpenhagen and the Öresund Region in August 2015 thinking in terms of CO and all that these simple letters may bring together or push apart.

We welcome submissions of paper abstracts dealing with issues and implications of CO- within empirical, theoretical, analytical, as well as methodological dimensions.

 Please see list of panels here.

Deadline for paper abstracts was December 5, 2014.

Please visit our program and information about invited guests and keynotes on this page

In connection with the conference a PhD course in ethnology will be offered in Lund, Sweden, from August 16th to August 17th.

Please note that the keynote lectures (to be announced later) will be held in English. The language of the panels may be in English or any of the Scandinavian languages at the discretion of the panel organizers.