Friday, June 12, 2009

Toronto is the Place to Be for Radio Fans this Summer: Deep Wireless and The Radio Conference 2009

This summer was surely the time to travel to Toronto if you're a radio fan and scholar. Thanks to Mediageek for cluing me in to the recently completed Deep Wireless Festival of Radio Art and Radio without Boundaries, which took place from May 1 to 31st. Events included performances, installations, and a conference May 28-30th. According to the festival website,

"The seventh annual Radio Without Boundaries conference makes Deep Wireless an internationally sought after destination for those with a general interest in radio and transmission art, sound and radio artists and/or those who just want something more from radio."

And then coming up July 27th to 30th, there is The Radio Conference 2009: A Transnational Forum being held at York University in Toronto. According to their website,

"This conference – the fifth transnational forum – aims to continue the work of Sussex 2001, Madison, Wisconsin 2003 Melbourne 2005 and Lincoln 2007 to bring together scholars, practitioners, and students of radio to share ideas and perspectives on radio’s cultural role in an increasingly global media context."

I'm disappointed to be missing this one, as there are a number of college radio-related papers on the tentative schedule. What's really cool is that there are papers about college radio in Canada, the U.S., and Pakistan; which should be fascinating.

As far as I can tell, though, there is only one paper about U.S. college radio (by Spinning Indie friend Nick Rubin!). I'm so glad to see some college radio attention at the conference, but am surprised there aren't more U.S.-themed papers on the subject. I wish I'd been aware of this conference sooner so that I could have potentially added to the conversation. Here are the college radio-related papers that I came across in the program (there could be more):

Reckoning: U.S. College Rock Radio, 1981-1984 (Nick Rubin, University of Virginia)

Radio FemCon?: Categorizing ‘women’s music’ on Canadian campus-community radio (Angela Wilson)

Panel: "Frequencies of Struggle” – The Role of Campus-Community Radio in Canadian Alternative Media (National Campus-Community Radio Association of Canada)

Practices of Localism at Low-Power FM Radio Stations (Cynthia Conti, New York University)

Social Impact Panel
Prospects and Challenges of FM Campus Radio Stations across Pakistan (Saaddia Ishtiaq, Voice of Women, Radio VOW)

Canadian Campus Radio: Tensions and Questions Concerning the “Independent” and Market Logic (Brian Fauteux, Concordia University)

Talking Back: The Role of Campus-Community Radio in Social Change and Identity (Sharmeen Khan, York University/Ryerson University)

One of the sponsors of the conference is the Radio Studies Network (which also publishes Radio Journal), a group of academics devoted to increasing the amount of radio scholarship being done across a range of disciplines.

And, hey, if you're planning to attend The Radio Conference 2009 I'd love to hear highlights!

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