Platforms to the World

(January 30-February 1, 2020)

Call for Participation [PDF]

“Platforms to the World” invites interdisciplinary scholars and practitioners to convene at the University of Texas at Dallas for a three-day symposium that will address the socio-political function of boundaries, the porousness of physical barriers, and the precariousness of “border logics.”

Through a series of scholarly-informed, community-facing activities, the symposium will address questions pertaining to border crossings, migrations, and other transnational transactions. We endeavor to pursue critical conversations and creative collaborations that address the roles of media technologies in these and related topics.

In addition, the Public Interactives Research Lab in the School of Arts, Technology, and Emerging Communication will develop an experimental video-conferencing platform for connecting with two labs in other parts of the world. If media technologies serve to both enact and intervene in boundary-making, how does connecting and collaborating with scholars elsewhere help cultivate a critical awareness of place-ness and of the boundaries of our own work?


The symposium will feature workshops led by invited guest participants:

  • Feng-Mei Heberer (NYU) researches Asian migrations and documentary media through a feminist and queer of color critique.
  • Carlos Jiménez (University of Denver) studies the use of communication technologies by migrant laborers and participates in projects that connect linguistically marginalized communities.
  • Shannon Mattern (The New School) researches the mediation of urban architectures and public ideas about global network communications.

Finally, the symposium ends with a site visit to the Trinity River, which defines the western border of Dallas, to consider the swiftly evolving urban landscape from the Dallas Continental Bridge. What motivates and sustains “border logics” at the national and local scale?

We seek scholars and practitioners working at the intersection of migration or border studies, media and cultural studies, and urban studies through a critical lens attentive to gender, race, class, and ability. To be considered for participation, submit a brief description of intellectual interests and creative practice (approximately 300 words) and a series of 3-5 questions that you would like to explore at the symposium.

Email heidi.cooley [at] utdallas.edu and juan.llamasrodriguez [at] utdallas.edu by September 30, 2019.

The “Platforms to the World” symposium is organized by Juan Llamas-Rodriguez, Heidi Rae Cooley, and Dale MacDonald. Funding provided by the Humanities and Emerging Arts (HEArts) Grant from the Office of Research at The University of Texas at Dallas.