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2016 Annual Conference Website Is Live

posted by Christopher Howard

The website for the 104th Annual Conference in Washington, DC, to be held from Wednesday, February 3 to Saturday, February 6, 2016 at the Washington Marriott Wardman Park Hotel, is live today. Get a taste of conference highlights and discover the benefits of registration, including access to all program sessions and admission to the Book and Trade Fair.

The dynamic energy of Washington, DC—known for its world-class museums and as an international destination for American history and culture—provides the backdrop for our annual gathering of more than four thousand artists, art historians, museum directors and curators, arts administrators, scholars, and educators. Look forward to the best in new scholarship, innovative art, and in-depth discussion of issues in the visual arts today.

Highlights of this year’s conference include a keynote address by the internationally acclaimed British architect David Adjaye, the presentation of CAA’s 2016 Awards for Distinction, an opening reception at the Katzen Arts Center at American University, and the sixteenth annual Distinguished Scholar Session honoring Richard J. Powell of Duke University. The two Distinguished Artists’ Interviews will feature the sculptor Joyce Scott, speaking to the curator George Ciscle, and the community-based practitioner Rick Lowe in conversation with the photographer LaToya Ruby Frazier. (Lowe and Frazer have both won a MacArthur Foundation fellowship, in 2014 and 2015, respectively).

Among the highly anticipated sessions are: “South to North: Latin American Artists in the United States, 1820s–1890s,” chaired by Katherine E. Manthorne; “Transforming Japonisme: International Japonisme in an Age of Industrialization and Visual Commerce,” led by Gabriel P. Weisberg; and the two-part “Formalism before Clement Greenberg,” chaired by Katherine M. Kuenzli and Marnin Young. Other exciting session topics range from art as adventure to the Hudson River School, from digital cultural heritage to algorithms and data in contemporary art, and from diversity in curatorial work to staging design in museums.

Online registration for individuals and institutions is now open. In addition, you can book your hotel reservations and make your travel arrangements—don’t forget to use the exclusive CAA discount codes to save money! Register before the early deadline, December 21, 2015, to get the lowest rate and to ensure your place in the Directory of Attendees. You may also purchase tickets for special events and for a place in one of eleven professional-development workshops on a variety of topics for artists and scholars.

CAA will regularly update the conference website in the months leading up to the four-day event, so please be sure to check back often. Averaging more than 40,000 unique visitors per month, the conference website is the essential source for up-to-the-minute updates regarding registration, session listings, and hotel and travel discounts. Visit the Advertising section to learn more about reaching CAA membership and conference attendees.

We look forward to seeing you in Washington, DC!

News from the Art and Academic Worlds

posted by Christopher Howard

Each week CAA News publishes summaries of eight articles, published around the web, that CAA members may find interesting and useful in their professional and creative lives.

US Has Funded Artists and Intellectuals for Half a Century, but It’s a Perennial Fight

As the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts celebrate their fiftieth anniversaries, they are still trying to climb out of the cellar, at least financially. While their endurance reflects an ongoing commitment to the arts and humanities, their struggles show that the government’s adherence to that promise can be fickle. (Read more from the Los Angeles Times.)

Does the Public Have a Right to Culture?

What do we mean when we say that artists and their heirs have a right to remuneration for the artist’s creativity? Conversely, what do we mean when we say that the public has a right to culture? Which public? Which culture? And is this “right” or “non-right” to be mediated solely through the law? (Read more from Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros.)

Museum Directors Release Plan to Help Provide Safe Havens for Endangered Antiquities

Amid the wanton destruction of antiquities in Syria and elsewhere, the Association of Art Museum Directors, a group that represents museum directors, proposed a set of protocols to help cultural institutions understand how they can provide safe haven for valuable works of art and archaeological relics that are at risk of being damaged, destroyed, or looted. (Read more from the New York Times.)

The Informal Economy and the Global Art Market

It is difficult to imagine a reason to keep artworks in a free port unless there is speculation going on. If you are a collector of fine art, you want to be able to see and to appreciate what you own. But if you are a speculator, all you need is storage since you are betting that the work is going to increase in value. (Read more from SFAQ.)

Solving the Solvents

Solvents are used in oil painting for various reasons. In the first layers they are frequently meant to make the paint washier—often a necessary step in the painting process for some artists. With thinner and more fluid paint, one is able to sketch or conjure the gesture that breathes life into a blank canvas and informs the subsequent layers. (Read more from Just Paint.)

Why the Visual Artists Rights Act Is Failing

The federal Visual Artists Rights Act (VARA), enacted in 1990 in the wake of the removal of Richard Serra’s Tilted Arc, was supposed to remedy a long series of conflicts between property owners and artists. The law grants artists the rights to prevent intentional modification to their art and the destruction of a work of “recognized stature.” But how effective is it? (Read more from Artsy.)

Humanities Majors’ Salaries

Major in English and expect to live with Mom and Dad for life. That’s the stereotype constantly reinforced by reports on the hot job prospects for nurses or code writers or various other positions for which practical training is seen as the route to economic success. But a new report shows that graduates with degrees in the humanities earn much more than the average for all American workers, challenging those who suggest that a degree in the humanities is a waste, at least financially. (Read more from Inside Higher Ed.)

On the Academic Job Market, Does Patience Pay Off?

How long am I marketable? It’s one of the most difficult questions an academic job seeker can face. And it’s one of the most important questions we hope our Academic JobTracker project can help answer. If you don’t get a job in your first year on the market, should you stay the course and take another swing next hiring season? Or is it already time to explore other career options? (Read more from the Chronicle of Higher Education.)

Filed under: CAA News

CAA is pleased to announce this year’s participants in the CAA–Getty International Program. In an effort to promote greater interaction and exchange between U.S. and international art historians, CAA will bring colleagues from around the world to its Annual Conference, this year to be held in Washington, D.C. from February 3–6, 2016. This is the fifth year of the program, which has been generously supported by a grant from the Getty Foundation since its inception. The participants—professors of art history, curators, and artists who teach art history—were selected by a jury of CAA members from a highly competitive group of applicants. In addition to covering travel expenses, hotel accommodations, and per diems, participants in the CAA–Getty International Program also receive complimentary conference registration and a one-year CAA membership.

The participants’ activities begin with a one-day preconference colloquium on international issues in art history, during which they meet with U.S.-based CAA members to discuss common interests and challenges. They are assisted throughout the conference by CAA member hosts, who recommend relevant panel sessions and introduce them to colleagues who share their interests. Members of CAA’s International Committee have agreed to serve as hosts, along with representatives from several of CAA’s Affiliated Societies.

CAA hopes that this program will not only increase international participation in the organization’s activities, but will also expand international networking and the exchange of ideas both during and after the conference. CAA currently includes members from 70 countries around the world; see the International Desk on CAA’s website for news about international activities and opportunities. The CAA–Getty International Program supplements CAA’s regular program of Annual Conference Travel Grants for graduate students and international artists and scholars. We look forward to welcoming the following participants at the next Annual Conference in Washington, DC.

 2016 Participants in the CAA-Getty International Program

Sarena Abdullah, Senior Lecturer, School of the Arts, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang

Abiodun Akande, Principal Lecturer, Department of Fine and Applied Arts, Emmanuel Alayande College of Education, Oyo State, Nigeria

Maria Isabel Baldassare, Associate Professor, Universidad Nacional de San Martin, Buenos Aires, Brazil

Danielle Becker, Lecturer in Art History and Visual Studies, University of Cape Town and Stellenbosch University, South Africa

Heloisa Espada, Postdoctoral Researcher, Museum of Contemporary Art of the University of Saõ Paulo, Brazil

Ildikó Fehér, Associate Professor, Art History Department, University of Fine Arts of Hungary, Budapest, Hungary

Peyvand Firouzeh, Post-doctoral Fellow, Museum fur Islamische Kunst, Berlin, Germany

Lev Maciel, Associate Professor, National Research University, Higher School of Economics, Moscow, Russia

Bui Thi Thanh Mai, Lecturer of Art History, Head of Department of Academic Research Management and International relations, Vietnam University of Fine Arts, Ha Noi, Vietnam

Emmanuel Moutafov, Associate Professor, Director, Institute of Art Studies, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia, Bulgaria

Ceren Ozpinar, Lecturer, Isik University and Kadir Has University, Istanbul, Turkey

Horacio Ramos, Associate Professor, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú

Olaya Sanfuentes, Professor,  Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile

Paulo Silveira, Professor, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Brazil

Sandra Uskokovic, Assistant Professor, University of Dubrovnik, Arts & Restoration Department, Croatia

“CAA’s Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for the Visual Arts: How Will It Help the Visual Arts Community?” is the name of a free presentation by Peter Jaszi, lead principal investigator of CAA’s fair-use project, that will take place at the New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) in Brooklyn on Tuesday, October 20, 2015, 6:00–7:30 PM. Jaszi will explain how the Code works, how it was created, and why it’s reliable. The presentation will be followed by a Q&A.

When can an artist or art historian use a photo she snapped in a museum for teaching? Can a museum reproduce an image from an exhibition of contemporary art in a related brochure without licensing it? How can fair use simplify the permissions process in publications? Can an archive put images from its collection online—and if so, with what restrictions? The copyright doctrine of fair use, which permits use of unlicensed copyrighted material, has great utility in the visual arts. But for too long, it’s been hard to understand how to interpret this rather abstract part of the law. The newly created Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for the Visual Arts, produced by CAA, makes it much easier to employ fair use to do scholarship in the visual arts, art practice, teaching, exhibitions, digital displays, and more.

The event will be held at NYFA’s office at 20 Jay Street, Suite 740, Brooklyn, NY 11201 (F train to York Street Station or A train to High Street/Brooklyn Bridge Station). The talk is free and open to the public but requires an RSVP via Eventbrite. The event is made possible by CAA, with a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

About the Presenter

Peter Jaszi is a professor of law at American University’s Washington College of Law, where he teaches copyright law and courses in law and cinema. He also supervises students in the Glushko-Samuelson Intellectual Property Law Clinic, which he helped to established, along with the Program on Intellectual Property and Information Justice. Jaszi has served as a trustee of the Copyright Society of the USA and is a member of the editorial board of its journal. A graduate of Harvard Law School (JD) and Harvard University (AB), he has written about copyright history and theory and coauthored Reclaiming Fair Use: How to Put Balance Back in Copyright (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2011) with Patricia Aufderheide.

News from the Art and Academic Worlds

posted by Christopher Howard

Each week CAA News publishes summaries of eight articles, published around the web, that CAA members may find interesting and useful in their professional and creative lives.

Am I a Hack or a Budding Genius?

I’m an undergraduate in painting and approaching my final semester. While I feel like I’ve come so far over the last several years, I can’t get over the fact that deep down, when I look at my pieces, they seem so derivative. Should I quit painting? What can I do to be more original? (Read more from Burnaway.)

What Is Transformative?

There has been a recent surge in interest around fair use both in academia and in the trenches of artistic production. Several books and articles have been written on the subject of late, not to mention the Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for the Visual Arts that CAA released in early 2015. These publications have provided an alternative to the “sky is falling” copyright narrative that Lawrence Lessig, James Boyle, and other legal scholars propagated in the late 1990s and early 2000s. (Read more from the Enemy.)

Will Facebook’s “Dislike” Button Change the Art World as We Know It?

Facebook will soon start testing a “dislike” button, or something very close to it. But will you really be able to dislike something? And what will the repercussions be for the hypersensitive contingency of contemporary art worlders? We decided to look at—you guessed it—Facebook to see what art types were saying about it. (Read more from the New York Observer.)

“So, What Is a Postdoc?”

After six years of graduate school, I got pretty good at explaining my research in evolutionary genetics to friends, family, strangers sitting beside me on an airplane, and anyone else who made the mistake of expressing an interest. What I didn’t anticipate was that when I finally finished my PhD, I would have to start explaining my actual job description. “I’m what’s called a ‘postdoc,’” I find myself saying regularly these days. And then I flounder. (Read more from Vitae.)

From Cory Arcangel to Pac-Man: How Digital Art Curators Save Vintage Data and Hardware

The artist Alexander Taylor was recently awarded a grant from Rhizome to support a project called .3gp. He plans to build a web app using YouTube’s API to let visitors digitally channel surf through a collection of videos shot on Motorola Razr–era cellphones. The project comes as the art world is increasingly concerned with preserving digital and electronic works, from amateur digital videos to experimental pieces by international art stars such as Cory Arcangel and Nam June Paik. (Read more from Fast Company.)

Not Paying Artists Deeply Entrenched in Gallery Culture, Research Suggests

The image of the hard-up artist toiling away day and night for little or no reward is nothing new, but recently published research may still surprise. It shows that more than 70 percent of contemporary visual artists who took part in publicly funded exhibitions in the last three years received no fee. Almost as many are now saying no to galleries because they cannot afford to work for free. The figures are published as part of a new campaign called Paying Artists, which is seeking a more equitable system. (Read more from the Guardian.)

Slow Teaching

At some point on the first day of classes I am going to ask my students to answer some questions anonymously. In all honesty, why did you enroll in this course? What final grade you would be happy with? What about this class are you most concerned or anxious about? Exploring students’ responses over the years has led me to identify two prevailing suspicions: that art-history courses are based on rote memorization of names and dates, and that class time will consist of a battery of artworks crammed into a swiftly delivered lecture. (Read more from Art History Teaching Resources.)

Preventing Ethnic Fraud

Rachel Dolezal made headlines for claiming to be black even as her parents publicly insisted she was white. The case brought to light something that academe has dealt with for decades: faculty applicants claiming an ethnic affiliation they don’t actually possess, either to gain some kind of edge in the hiring process or to appear more expert in one’s field—or both. While a variety of ethnic and cultural groups have been the subject of such fraud, Native Americans might be the most consistently affected group. (Read more from Inside Higher Ed.)

Filed under: CAA News

LaToya Ruby Frazier, a photographer and video artist who uses visual autobiographies to capture social inequality and historical change in the postindustrial age, has won a 2015 MacArthur Foundation Fellowship.

Frazier, an assistant professor in the Department of Photography at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in Illinois, was a 2006 recipient of a CAA Professional Development Fellowship. At the time, she was completing her MFA in art photography in the School of Visual and Performing Arts at Syracuse University in Syracuse, New York. Before that Frazier earned a BFA in photography and graphic design from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania.

Informed by documentary practices from the turn of the last century, Frazier explores identities of place, race, and family in work that is a hybrid of self-portraiture and social narrative. The crumbling landscape of Braddock, Pennsylvania, a once-thriving steel town, forms the backdrop of her images, which make manifest both the environmental and infrastructural decay caused by postindustrial decline and the lives of those who continue—largely by necessity—to live among it.

Frazier’s work has appeared in solo exhibitions at the Brooklyn Museum in New York, the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston, the Seattle Art Museum in Washington, and the Contemporary Arts Museum in Houston. Her first book, The Notion of Family, was published in 2014. To learn more about Frazier’s work, watch her MacArthur Foundation video.

Other winners of the 2015 MacArthur Foundation Fellowship include the author Ta-Nehisi Coates, the painter Nicole Eisenman, and the playwright Lin-Manuel Miranda. For the entire list of 2015 fellows, visit the foundation’s website.

The MacArthur Fellows Program awards unrestricted fellowships to talented individuals who have shown extraordinary originality and dedication in their creative pursuits and a marked capacity for self-direction. There are three criteria for selection of fellows: exceptional creativity, promise for important future advances based on a track record of significant accomplishment, and potential for the fellowship to facilitate subsequent creative work. The foundation does not require or expect specific products or reports from its fellows and does not evaluate recipients’ creativity during their term of the fellowship. The MacArthur fellowship is a “no strings attached” award in support of people, not projects. Each fellowship comes with a stipend of $625,000, paid out to the recipient in equal quarterly installments over five years.

Founded in 1993, CAA’s Professional-Development Fellowships program supports promising artists, designers, craftspersons, historians, curators, and critics who are enrolled in MFA, PhD, and other terminal-degree programs nationwide. The deadline for the MFA fellowship is Monday, November 16, 2015. CAA will send notifications in January 2016.

Image credit: John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Filed under: Awards, People in the News

Working as a projectionist, room monitor, or registration attendant at CAA’s 104th Annual Conference, taking place February 3–6, 2016, in Washington, DC, is a great way to save on conference expenses. All candidates must be US citizens or permanent US residents. CAA encourages students and emerging professionals—especially those in the Washington, DC, area—to apply for service.


CAA seeks applications for projectionists for conference program sessions. Successful applicants are paid $12 per hour and receive complimentary conference registration. Projectionists are required to work a minimum of four 2½-hour program sessions, from Wednesday, February 3 to Saturday, February 6; they must also attend a training meeting on Wednesday morning at 7:30 AM. Projectionists must be familiar with digital projectors. Please send a two-page CV and a brief letter of interest to Katie Apsey, CAA manager of programs. Deadline: December 21, 2015.

Room Monitors and Registration Attendants

CAA needs room monitors for two Career Services mentoring programs (the Artists’ Portfolio Review and Career Development Mentoring), several offsite sessions, and other conference events, to be held from Wednesday, February 3 to Saturday, February 6; they must also attend a training meeting on Wednesday morning at 7:30 AM. Successful candidates are paid $12 per hour and receive complimentary conference registration. Room monitors are required to work a minimum of eight hours, checking in participants and facilitating the work of the mentors. Please send a two-page CV and a brief letter of interest to Katie Apsey, CAA manager of programs. Deadline: December 21, 2015.

Registration Attendants

CAA seeks registration attendants to work in the registration area at the 2016 Annual Conference in Washington, DC, to be held from Tuesday evening, February 2 to Saturday, February 6. Duties Registration attendants must attend a training meeting on Tuesday afternoon, February 2. Successful candidates are paid $12 per hour and receive complimentary conference registration. Registration Attendants are required to work a minimum of ten hours, registering conference participants, checking membership statuses, and monitoring registration compliance in various session rooms. Please send a two-page CV and a brief letter of interest to Katie Apsey, CAA manager of programs. Deadline: December 21, 2015.

Image: Working the registration booths at the 2015 Annual Conference in New York (photograph by Bradley Marks)

Filed under: Annual Conference, Service, Students

Mentors Needed for the 2016 Annual Conference

posted by Katie Apsey

For the 104th Annual Conference, taking place February 3–6, 2016, in Washington, DC, CAA seeks established professionals in the visual arts to volunteer as mentors for two Career Services programs: the Artists’ Portfolio Review and Career Development Mentoring. Participating as a mentor is an excellent way to serve the field and to assist the professional growth of the next generation of artists and scholars.

Art historians and studio artists must be tenured; critics, museum educators, and curators must have five years’ experience. Curators and educators must be currently employed by a museum or university gallery.

Artists’ Portfolio Review

CAA seeks artists, critics, curators, and educators to serve in the Artists’ Portfolio Review. In this program, mentors review and provide feedback on digital images or DVDs of work by artist members in personal twenty-minute consultations. Whenever possible, CAA matches artists and mentors based on medium or discipline. Mentors provide an important service to artists, enabling them to receive professional criticism of their work.

Interested candidates must be current CAA members and prepared to give five successive twenty-minute critiques in a two-hour period on one of two days: Thursday, February 4, and Friday, February 5, 2016, 8:00 AM–NOON and 1:00–5:00 PM each day. Conference registration, while encouraged, is not required to be a mentor. Please send a brief letter of interest and your CV to Katie Apsey, CAA manager of programs. Deadline: December 14, 2015.

Career Development Mentoring

CAA seeks mentors from all areas of studio art, art history, art education, film and video, graphic design, the museum professions, and other related fields to serve in Career Development Mentoring. In this program, mentors give valuable advice to emerging and midcareer professionals, reviewing cover letters, CVs, digital images, and other pertinent job-search materials in personal twenty-minute consultations. Whenever possible, CAA matches participants and mentors based on medium or discipline.

Interested candidates must be current CAA members and prepared to give five successive twenty-minute mentoring sessions in a two-hour period on one of two days: Thursday, February 4, and Friday, February 5, 2016, 8:00 AM–NOON and 1:00–5:00 PM each day. Conference registration, while encouraged, is not required to be a mentor. Please send a brief letter of interest and your CV to Katie Apsey, CAA manager of programs. Deadline: December 14, 2015.

Career Development Mentoring is not intended as a screening process by institutions seeking new hires. CAA does not accept applications from individuals whose departments are conducting a faculty search in the field in which they are mentoring. Mentors should not be attending the conference as candidates for positions in the same field in which mentees may be applying.

Image: CAA member Kendra Larson (right) participates in a mentoring session with Morgan Paine at the 2015 Annual Conference in New York (photograph by Bradley Marks)

Filed under: Annual Conference, Mentoring

The Services to Artists Committee invites artist members to participate in ARTexchange, the annual meet-up for artists and curators at CAA’s unique pop-up exhibition. This social event provides an opportunity for artists to share their work and build affinities with other artists, historians, curators, and cultural producers. ARTexchange will take place at the 104th Annual Conference in Washington, DC, on Friday evening, February 5, 2016, from 5:30 to 7:30 PM.

Each artist is given the space on, above, and beneath a six-foot table to exhibit their works: prints, paintings, drawings, photographs, sculptures, and small installations; performance, process-based, interactive and participatory works are especially encouraged. Previous ARTexchange participants have found that this parameter sparked many creative display options. Depending on the number and type of submissions CAA receives, a schedule of performances may be created. Please note that artwork cannot be hung on walls, and it is not possible to run power cords from laptops or other electronic devices to outlets—bring fully charged batteries.

To participate, send an email to Katie Apsey, CAA manager of programs. Include your CAA member number and a brief description of what you plan to present. Please provide details regarding performance, sound, spoken word, or technology-based work, including laptop presentations. You will receive an email confirmation. Because ARTexchange is a popular venue and participation is based on available space, early applicants are given preference. Participants are responsible for their work; CAA is not liable for losses or damages. Sales of work are not permitted. Deadline: December 14, 2015.

Image: A participant in ARTexchange at the 2015 Annual Conference in New York (photograph by Bradley Marks)

Filed under: Annual Conference, Artists, ARTspace

News from the Art and Academic Worlds

posted by Christopher Howard

Each week CAA News publishes summaries of eight articles, published around the web, that CAA members may find interesting and useful in their professional and creative lives.

What Ever Happened to Google Books?

It was the most ambitious library project of our time—a plan to scan all of the world’s books and make them available to the public online. “We think that we can do it all inside of ten years,” Marissa Mayer, who was then a vice president at Google, said to the New Yorker in 2007, when Google Books was in its beta stage. “It’s mind-boggling to me, how close it is.” Today, the project sits in a kind of limbo. (Read more from the New Yorker.)

There Is No Excuse for How Universities Treat Adjuncts

Apart from feeling sorry for the underpaid faculty, why should we care that college professors have the same job conditions as day laborers, fast-food workers, cashiers, taxi drivers, or home-care aides? They did, after all, choose to pursue a career in higher ed. Administrators at these institutions of higher learning argue that they need to use adjuncts because it is the only way to keep tuition from rising even faster than it has. And isn’t access to education the higher good? (Read more from the Atlantic.)

Why Is College So Expensive If Professors Are Paid So Little?

Twenty-five years ago, a student at a public college or nonresearch university campus would see twice as many faculty as administrators on average; now the ratio is roughly equal. Just 20 percent of the teaching workforce in 2013 were permanent or tenure track. About half worked part-time or as adjuncts, often stitching together temporary gigs at different institutions. (Read more from the Nation.)

Is This Art?

The State University of New York at Buffalo community was reeling last week after signs saying “white only” and “black only” appeared beside water fountains and bathrooms around campus. The signs were “posted by a student for a graduate art course,” said John DellaContrada, associate vice president for media relations and stakeholder communications. “We’re still looking into it.” (Read more from Inside Higher Ed.)

Exposing White Privilege

Uproar over a controversial and racially charged art project at the State University of New York at Buffalo spread well beyond campus over the weekend—with people responding to both the project and the artist’s explanation of it. Ashley Powell, a graduate student in art who placed “white only” and “black only” signs around campus last week, did so without any explanation. But amid the uproar, she published a lengthy defense of her work in the campus newspaper. (Read more from Inside Higher Ed.)

Participation in the Arts Is Driven by Education, Not Class

Among sociologists, the arts have traditionally been examined through the lens of social class. Much research has found the well off and well connected are more likely to appreciate the arts, suggesting that highbrow taste is a significant signal of status. But those studies, as a rule, have failed to distinguish between passive enjoyment of the arts (say, going to the ballet) and active involvement (actually taking a dance class). A new study from England finds making that distinction is quite revealing. (Read more from Pacific Standard.)

Why Conference Book Exhibits Persist

Absent from the debates over the relative merits of academic conferences—either as disciplinary revival meetings, intellectual proving grounds, or ancient tribal gatherings—has been any discussion of book exhibits. We usually assume those ubiquitous spaces are part of the cost of registration, and we only notice them when they’re not there. Apart from the plenary and concurrent sessions, the workshops and roundtables, book exhibits are a middle ground between scholarship and commerce. (Read more from the Chronicle of Higher Education.)

Three Tips for Handling Discussions in Online Classes

I’ve been teaching a large online class for the first time this semester. Because the course involves looking at a number of challenge interactive works and games, I emphasize discussion forums and critical debate. Discussion forums, however, present many potential problems in an online class. We only have to read the comments anywhere on the web to see that the online medium offers huge potential for miscommunication, personal attacks, trolling, and harassment—even when in the space of a virtual classroom. (Read more from ProfHacker.)

Filed under: CAA News

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