Call for Papers

7 Nov 2023

Call for Papers - Rebuilding the Socio-creative through Digital Culture, An International Symposium

University College Cork, Ireland, June 11th and 12th, 2024

The ARTFICTIONS project invites scholars, students, artists, and practitioners to contribute to Rebuilding the Socio-creative through Digital Culture, an international symposium dedicated to exploring the intricate intersections between subject formation, radical imagination, gaming mechanics, troll culture, and collective societal approaches in this time of ubiquitous screen-mediated exchange. The seminar will analyse the role of digital culture in examine the ways in which digital culture is providing alternatives to (instead of just being behind one of the main causes of) techno-conservative politics, individualist subject-formation, processes of neoliberalisation and practices of biopolitical exclusion.


Potential participants are invited to submit across one of the following interconnected strands:


Roguelike Epistemologies as Social and Creative Experiments

In roguelike video games, if your character dies, you start from scratch. Yet, each restart becomes easier, as you learn from past mistakes. These games are captivating because they stress thinking ahead, learning from every experience, and adapting to ever-changing challenges. Imagine using this approach in society or art. Think of revolutions, like hitting a "restart" button for new societal beginnings, hoping for better outcomes based on past lessons. Submissions to this strand will explore how we might harness the roguelike mindset for broader cultural and social innovation, addressing topics such as, but not limited to: Permadeath and its implications on the nature of experience and temporal speculation;  Situated critical considerations in shifting challenges, akin to roguelike gameplay dynamics; The potential applications of roguelike frameworks on socio-political events, such as revolutions or the promise of new societal beginnings.


Troll Ontologies in Platform Capitalism

In our interconnected world, the concept of trolling is no longer limited to the digital realm; "troll culture" has now permeated broader societal facets. Trolls, once thought to be confined to online spaces, provoking from behind screens, have found a place in our everyday culture. Submissions to this strand will explore how we might challenge the boundaries of artistic capitalism through the lens of troll culture, addressing topics such as, but not limited to: Troll culture as a significant component of creative capitalism, Unpacking the “they” vs. “us” dichotomy prevalent in discussions about troll behavior; The role of trolls in an era characterised by ubiquitous digital exchanges.


Collective Approaches to the Anti-social Digital

In a book on platform culture published in 2022, Geert Lovink suggests a paradox: while social media promises connection, platforms of attention have become the most divisive tools of our time. This strand will delve into this irony, probing whether online habits have dismantled cherished values of community and shared purpose. In a world dominated by platforms, this strand will explore if there remains room to foster genuine connection and seek alternatives that truly bring us together, addressing topics such as, but not limited to: Dissecting the assertion about social media's inherent anti-social tendencies; analyzing the possible erosion of collectivism and communal ideologies in the age of pervasive social media; exploring potential spaces for alternatives amidst the dominance of anti-social digital platforms.

 Each strand will be organized around a keynote lecture and a roundtable that will include all the participants in the session. Accepted abstracts will be considered for a forthcoming volume on the symposium’s main topics (to be published in 2026).

Thanks to generous support of the Irish Research Council, delegates will not be required to pay registration fees to participate in this event. Furthermore, free campus accommodation will be made available to programme contributors. Online presentations will be facilitated and the event will be livestreamed.


Submission Guidelines

Abstracts of 500 words should be submitted to Dr Carlos Garrido Castellano and Dr. James O’Sullivan by January 27th, 2024, 5pm GMT (UTC+00:00; Meán-Am Greenwich).

Proposals are welcome from scholars, students, artists, and practitioners, including from those discussing their own practice. The proposals should clearly indicate the strand (or strands) with which the author aligns. Accepted authors will be invited to give a 20-minute conference-style paper presentation followed by 10 minutes of questions and answers.

Any queries regarding the symposium can be directed to Dr Garrido Castellano at the aforementioned email address.

Notification of acceptance will be February 2024.



Dr Carlos Garrido Castellano

Department of Spanish, Portuguese, and Latin American Studies

Dr James O’Sullivan

Department of Digital Humanities


ARTFICTIONS seeks to explain how contemporary literature is dealing with artistic creativity when artmaking is no longer a specialised field of cultural production, but rather an expanded field of socioeconomic interaction, personal and creative self-definition and collective imagination. ARTFICTIONS and Rebuilding the Socio-creative through Digital Culture are funded by the Irish Research Council, grant number IRCLA/2022/3890. This event has also received support from the Department of Digital Humanities and the Digital Cultures, New Media, & Cultural Analytics research cluster at University College Cork.

For more on this story contact:

Dr Carlos Garrido Castellano -

@uccsplas Research