While we have had much help along the way, at the heart of Preoccupied, there are but two of us. At the outset, we imagined a conference that would engage with the tensions between the art world, activism and the academy. Yet, we imagined we’d produce such provocations in the safety of academic culture–with the help of its structures, funding, and mores. Along the way, bit by bit, every piece of academic culture slipped away. In it’s place: the community of OccupyBB7 and the thoughtfulness of academics, artists and activists from over thirteen countries. It’s been an honour to work with you all. We are:
Jocelyn Parr is working on a PhD in Comparative Literature with the Erasmus Mundus Joint Doctorate program in Literary Interzones. Her dissertation will explore Shame and the act of writing in works by Anne Carson, Maggie Nelson, Roberto Bolaño, and W.G. Sebald. She has a B. A. from UBC in Vancouver, BC, and two Masters degrees, one in the history of Latin America and the other in Creative Writing and English Literature, both obtained in Montreal at Concordia University. She is on leave from a faculty position in the history department at Dawson College. She had a residency in the Spring 2011 Writing Studio in the Banff Centre for Literary Arts, and has been an editor for Matrix Magazine and the bilingual review Le Panoptique, both out of Montreal. Forthcoming work will appear in Brick Magazine this coming Autumn.
Samara Chadwick studies the construction of identity in young adults, especially in relation to space, cities, and, most recently, the Occupy movement and the changing landscape of work. She scrutinizes the intersection of individual narratives and the current movements of resistance, while exploring online methods of sociological research and interactive storytelling. She has an B.A. in Communication Studies and Liberal Arts from Concordia University in Montreal, an M.A. in Cultural Studies from the Freie Universität Berlin, and is currently writing her PhD thesis within the EMJD program in Literary Interzones. Alongside her academic work, Samara has been involved in documentary production since 2003 – as an activist, editor, producer, and as an associate programmer for the Hot Docs International Documentary Film Festival in Toronto. She is Canadian and currently lives in Rio de Janeiro.
Press inquiries can be sent to emjdconference at gmail dot com.