Appel à publication : Journal of Gobal Pop Cultures, no. 2: The Natures of Pop

The Natures of Pop.
Second Issue of the Journal of Global Pop Cultures (September 2023)

Pop is artificial by definition. Of course, all forms of culture are artificial. But this is especially true of pop. Unlike older concepts, such as folk culture, folklore, or popular culture, the concept of « pop » emerged only in the 1950s and referred to the specific cultural forms of postmodern, highly technologized liberal consumer societies.

While folk culture was traditionally viewed and ideologized as deeply rooted, enduring, organic, and authentic, pop was popularized as an artificial construct characterized by a plethora of ephemeral trends, cultural industries, and performative self-understandings. Pop was post-natural — replete with technology, capital, and performativity. Countercultures like the hippie movement can be understood as reactions to this condition.

Against this background, pop culture(s) seem(s) to be the absolute antidote to the traditional understanding of « nature » from the perspective of Western modernity: Nature was seen as that which exists independently of and before humans, culture as that which humans consciously create with the help of various technologies. This dualistic paradigm has been challenged in the wake of post- and transhumanist theories, among others, in transculturality studies, which illuminate non-Western approaches to the interrelationships between nature and culture, as well as, more recently, in discourses surrounding the Anthropocene. The boundaries between nature and culture have become permeable, with the influence of humans, and thus of human cultures and human technologies-being the decisive geological factor. Nature and culture, art and life are now, more than ever, interpreted as genuine hybrids.

What does this shift mean for studying global pop cultures?

Against the backdrop of the Anthropocene, the « nature of technology » (W. Brian Arthur), advanced biotechnology, ongoing cyborgization, and hypertechnicization, the second issue of the Journal of Global Pop Cultures examines the treatment of nature in pop artifacts (e.g., music videos, song lyrics, fashion, dance performances, memes, magazines, games, and spaces). This open access online journal was founded in 2020 by Shared Campus, a cooperation platform of international art universities. It promotes inter- and transdisciplinarity as well as the encounter between academic and artistic projects. The journal therefore comprises a scholarly, peer-reviewed section (double-blind) and an open magazine section. The peer-reviewed section includes scholarly texts and artistic research projects. In addition, contributions are sought for the magazine section, which is a non-academic and casual platform presenting work related to the theme of the issue. This section welcomes artistic works and journalistic investigations dealing with the social phenomenon of pop.

Our next issue (to be published in September 2023) is titled « The Natures of Pop. » Instead of focusing on current debates about the ecological crisis and the positioning of pop protagonists, we take a step back to discuss the interrelations between pop and nature: Can pop still be considered « artificial » when nature itself becomes an artifact and technology becomes biological — « beyond nature and culture » (Philippe Descola)?

Contributions may address, but are not limited to, the following questions:
– How is nature represented in historical and contemporary pop artifacts?
– How are essentialist concepts of nature and culture deconstructed, e.g., in relation to gender and sexuality?
– What future scenarios of the relationship between technology and nature are presented?
– How and where can new ideas and images of nature — beyond aesthetic idealization and moralizing alarmism — be identified?
– How do subcultures and countercultures present themselves outside urban centers?
– How are utopian ideas linked to current conceptions of nature in pop culture(s)?
– How do pop culture(s)-influenced phenomena such as self-staging in social networks, (deep) fakes, or overall acceleration affect the experience of nature? And how do concepts such as mindfulness, healing, and deceleration affect that experience?
– How can contemporary narratives, discourses, micro-communities, and phenomena such as planet-centered futures, urban birdwatching collectives, rural queers, nature blindness, psychedelic psychotherapy, or digital houseplants be understood and interpreted in the context of pop culture(s)?


Stylesheet for academic papers / artistic research projects:
We accept all established writing styles and formats for academic papers, such as APA ( wiki/APA_style) or MLA ( MLA_Handbook).
However, scholarly articles must adhere to a single style. Please use Times New Roman 12, 1.5 spacing.
Maximum length of academic papers: 25.000 characters including spaces, footnotes, bibliography. If you wish to submit a longer manuscript, please contact the journal editors prior to submission.
Please attach a short CV (max. 500 characters including spaces) and a title image (free to use/royalty free).
Artistic research projects are not subject to academic styles or formats.
Accompanying images / sounds: See Style Sheet for Journalistic Texts (below).

Stylesheet for journalistic texts (magazine):
Journalistic texts and non-academic, experimental contributions (e.g., video lecture performances) are not subject to academic styles or formats.
Texts: Approx. 5000 characters including spaces. Additional image and video content welcome.
Images: Size: 4 MB (max.). Accepted image formats: jpg, gif, png, svg
Documents: Size: 10 MB (max.). Accepted document formats: pdf, doc/ docx, xls/xlsx, ppt/ pptx, txt, csv
Videos: URL of uploaded video file (Vimeo, Youtube etc.).
Sounds: URL of uploaded audio file (Sound- Cloud, Vimeo etc.)

Please submit papers and/or video/audio files (via file transfer service) to:
Jörg Scheller (, Masahiro Yasuda (, Annekathrin Kohout (

Submission deadline: March 31, 2023

Organized by the Global Pop Cultures Research Network
Published by Shared Campus Publications

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