Con+tagion – Faculty Roundtable

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Con + vene
Faculty Roundtable

Saturday, October 21: 2:45-3:45pm

Moderator: ENNURI JO, PhD Student, Cinema and Media Studies

The common, medical use of the term contagion and its etymology together tell us: contagion signifies the spreading of something beyond the established structures and methods of contact.  In other words: the potential of “contagion” comes from its transgression beyond borders.

Academia sits on the precarious border between the public and the private. At times, it has been a necessary sanctuary for discourse with institutional and intellectual support; at others, its intellectual safeguards, powered by private wealth, act to privilege and normalize certain patterns of thought and positions over others. On the other hand, the contagious thoughts, discussions, and practices continue to flow and transgress in and out of schools, informing and recording the makings of our society at large. A scholar, then, is at once an academic and/or administrator at an institution; a scholar in pursuit of knowledge and crafting thought; a specialist in her designated field; an artist; a teacher who shares and legitimizes this knowledge in the classroom; and a political being that contains this multitude of personal and public identities.

How does one navigate this precarious yet promising space and role in the overlap of scholarly and political pursuit? Should the two pursuits always overlap? What roles do, and/or should, borders and sanctuaries play, given the constructive potential of contagious thoughts, texts, and actions? How should we situate ourselves as scholars in the contemporary political and social landscape? How does our work as scholars of media inform and shape this journey today when media is created, propagated, and reconstructed in unprecedented, transgressive ways?

For this year’s conference roundtable, we invite three CaMS faculty members to speak alongside and in response to such questions:

Dr. Christine Acham

Dr. Priya Jaikumar

Dr. Laura Isabel Serna