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Milan: Crossroad of Cultures

International Conference (Milan, 22-23 September 2016)

A two-day conference jointly organised by the University of Birmingham and the University of Warwick, in partnership with the Università degli Studi di Milano.

Call for papers (deadline extended 10th April 2016)


Confirmed keynote speakers:

Prof. John Foot (University of Bristol)
Prof. Giovanna Rosa (Università degli Studi di Milano)


Milan has been at the heart of modern Italy’s cultural transformations. Considered the “capitale morale” of the country since the nineteenth century, the city has also acquired the role of a financial capital, becoming the “città operosa” par excellence in the collective imagination. It has become the home of prominent intellectual figures and a place where cultural institutions as well as major national newspapers and publishing houses have increasingly been concentrated. The city has historically presented itself as a hub for members of the intellectual professions and, during recent decades, for the television, fashion and design industries. Milan has also been a gateway for Italy, filtering cultural innovation and transformation from abroad, and cyclically has acted as a point of attraction or connection for diverse migration fluxes.

Our conference explores Milan as a crossroads of cultures and a fertile ground for artistic experimentation and cultural exchange, also emphasising the role of the industrial context and professional expertise in producing, developing or steering transformations over the last two centuries, with a privileged focus on contemporary developments. We aim to investigate the ways in which different artistic practices and media intertwined and conceptualised urban life, addressing questions of spatiality and temporal representation. Therefore, we invite contributions concerning, on the one hand, intermediality, transmedia narrative and the hybridisation of artistic languages and codes of meaning in order to shed light on cultural and professional exchanges and capture the complexity of Milan’s life. On the other hand, we welcome papers that focus on the interplay between history, geography and migratory phenomena, by exploring real and fictional places, institutionalised and interiorised geographies of the city.

Organising Committee
Marco Bellardi (PhD candidate, University of Birmingham)
Maria Belova (PhD candidate, University of Warwick)
Sara Boezio (PhD candidate, University of Warwick)
Giulia Brecciaroli (PhD candidate, University of Warwick)