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CALL FOR PAPERS (article first published : 1999-06-21)

The Graduate Programme in Cultural and Media Studies (CMS) at the University of Natal, Durban, and the World Association for Christian Communication (WACC) are inviting papers for a seminar on political economy of the media in Southern Africa to be held from April 24 to 29, 2000.

The 1990s decade has seen significant shifts in the political economy of the Southern African media - newspaper, broadcasting, cinema and telecommunications. Traditionally, African broadcasting has been considered part of the civil service. However, since 1990, Southern African governments have re-regulated the airwaves permitting private satellite transmission via both encryption and free-to-air, in addition to public service and commercial channels.

In print, state-owned newspapers are now in competition with commercial ventures, some of which are funded by global interests. South Africa's Telkom is playing a major role in systematising sub-continental infrastructures, and leading the trends towards privatisation, while private cellular providers offer what is increasingly seen as a parallel telephone service, often in partnership with the parastatal landline providers. Countries previously without TV are now planning its introduction (eg. Malawi and Botswana), while in all SADC countries issues of freedom of the press have been hotly reignited by de- and re-regulation policies, liberalisation of national economies, and privatisation.

The time is now ripe for a critical and regionally integrated discussion on issues relating to political economy of the Southern African media, and on methods of analysis, theory and transnationalism.

The seminar is restricted to 22 delegates. Applicants are requested to submit an Abstract, which will be considered by a selection committee comprising scholars from WACC and CMS. Final papers must be submitted prior to the Seminar for pre-circulation. Deadline for proposal submission is August 31, 1999.

For details contact Professor Keyan G Tomaselli , programme director of Graduate Programme in Cultural and Media Studies, University of Natal, Durban 4041, South Africa. Fax: + 27-31-260-1519, Phone: + 27-31-260-2505, e-mail: tomasell@mtb.und.ac.za Website address: www.und.ac.za/und/ccms


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