Louro, I., M. Mendes, D. Paiva and I. Sánchez-Fuarros (eds.). 2021. “A Sonic Anthropocene – Sound Practices in a Changing Environment”. Double Special Issue. Cadernos de Arte e Antropologia 10 (1-2)
Along with the prolific visual culture developed with the Anthropocene hypothesis — including a large number of infographics, maps and visual documentation of planetary transformations — the present socio-ecological changes equally require practices of listening and aural documentation that register the transformations in the acoustic landscapes of cities and natural environments. These practices of listening and aural documentation might further the capacity of registering the transient space that the Anthropocene occupies in the material domain, while opening up a space for an extended sensibility that accounts for transformations across scales, from the molecular to the societal and the planetary. This space of potential proposed by the Sonic Anthropocene brings forward new possibilities for involving aural documentation tools in environmental affairs, while holding on to the critiques addressed to previous ecological debates initiated in the sonic field, such as is the case of the acoustic ecology movement.
This double special issue of Cadernos de Arte e Antropologia seeks to make a contribution to these reflections by placing sound at the centre of an interdisciplinary conversation about the economic, social, cultural, political and ecological processes that underlie the current planetary transformations.
Vanspauwen, B. and I. Sánchez-Fuarros (eds.) “Postcolonial Airliners as Cultural Mediators: Corporate Branding and Cultural Governance in Transnational Contexts”. Special Issue. American Anthropologist [In preparation]
For most airline companies, 2020 came in like a wrecking ball. Recent centenary celebrations of some of the world’s oldest airliners such as KLM and Qantas, just a year before, forcedly made room for grounded personnel, humanitarian or repatriation flights and government rescue packages for survival. The global pandemic swept away previous dreams of global mobility and stressless tourism. In addition, cultural outputs – from inflight magazines to government-backed tourist attraction programs – were put on hold too. Halfway 2022, a heigthened postcovid ‘revenge travel boom’ and workforce shortages at several hub airports then led to thousands of canceled holiday flights and a new delicate setback for international travel. As a result, airlines in particular, and the travel industry in general, are restructuring to face a new scenario of uncertainty.
Taking the airplane as a chronotope, a moving element which represents a political and cultural unity, and connects fixed but geographically disperse spaces in fluid, imaginary ways, this special issue seeks original research that studies the intersections between corporate branding and cultural governance in flag carriers with a colonial past. This special issue focuses on cultural mediation from an anthropological and postcolonial perspective, by investigating into the ways in which former colonial flag carriers have represented/embodied transnational cultures, national identities, memories and heritage, as well as their interstitial spaces in which these issues are negotiated and/or contested.