New Book by Ceren Mert: “The Vigorous Local”

Ceren Mert, teaching assistant at Media and Communication Systems Department in Istanbul Bilgi University, has published her first book from LAP LAMBERT Academic Publishing. Her book elaborates on: how music has become a significant means of communication in the process of globalization, and how it integrates the aggrieved populations to speak through and to express their antagonistic stances. In addition to the discussions of globalization, this study analyzes the medium of music along the areas of media and identity politics. In this respect, it deliberates on the ‘global’ and ‘local’ features of hip-hop. Although born in the ghettos of Bronx, New York, this global youth culture has been adopted by other minority youths in order to voice their anger and frustration towards the exclusionist practices of the state, as well as racism and discrimination they face in their host countries. Accordingly, the second and third generation Turkish youths in Germany and South Asian youths in Britain have revealed their rage through the subversive lyrics they employed. Therefore, these lyrics can also be regarded as narratives that indicate these immigrant youths as representatives of resistance and defiance. The Vigorous Local is on sale at Amazon.com.

Ceren Mert presented at the 17th International Symposium on Electronic Art

The 17th International Symposium on Electronic Art (ISEA 2011) was hosted by Sabancı University this year that took place between 14-21 September 2011, and several other activities and events started a week prior to the symposium. Coinciding with the opening of the Istanbul Biennial, workshops regarding various artistic practices and performances were also made public in different locations in Istanbul. At the ISEA 2011 Symposium, numerous artists, designers and academicians from all around the world with different educational backgrounds came to present their works. It is within this symposium that Ceren Mert, teaching assistant at the Media and Communication Systems Department in Istanbul Bilgi University presented her paper entitled “Creative Spaces of the Immigrants: Revisiting the Discussions on City-Space, Technology and Artistic Practices”. The ISEA 2011 can be reached from the website: http://isea2011.sabanciuniv.edu/ and Ceren Mert’s paper abstract can be read from the link: http://isea2011.sabanciuniv.edu/node/939

Ceren Mert’in Makaleleri

Medya ve İletişim Sistemleri araştırma görevlisi Ceren Mert’in geçtiğimiz akademik yıl içinde yayınlanan iki makalesi şöyle: 

“İstanbul’un Küresel Akışlar İçerisindeki Dijital Sesleri ve Mekânları” (“The Digital Voices and Spaces of Istanbul within the Global Flows”) published in Kültür Envanteri – İstanbul’da Eğlence Kitabı (Entertainment in Istanbul part of the Istanbul 2010 Capital of Culture Inventory series) (eds. Volkan Aytar &Kübra Parmaksızoğlu), April 2011, pp. 179-186

“İstanbul’da Bir Üçüncü Mekân Okuması: ‘Pozitif’ Titreşimler ve Babylon” (“A Reading of Thirdspace in Istanbul: ‘Pozitif’ Vibrations and Babylon”) in Idealkent: Kent Araştırmaları Dergisi (Idealkent: Journal of City Researches) no. 2, Dec. 2010, pp. 86-113

Ceren Mert Presented @ Spaces of Alterity Conference

Spaces of Alterity: Conceptualising Counter-Hegemonic Sites, Practices and Narratives April 27-28, 2011 (held in Nottingham-UK; organized by University of Nottingham)

“Forming Creative Spaces through Films: Fatih Akin and the Possible Representations of the Lived Spaces of the Immigrants

Paper Presentation: Ceren Mert (Istanbul Bilgi University, Turkey)

Initially this paper will dwell on the philosophical conceptualization of ‘space’ and how spatialization takes (or might take) place utilizing the theoretical conceptualizations of writers such as Lefebvre, Deleuze & Guattari, and Doreen Massey. Taking these authors’ spatial conceptualizations into consideration, I will elaborate on the issue of city-spaces within the process of globalization and how immigrants and diasporic cultures (especially youth) construct spaces of alterity making use of their artistic creation (i.e. film and music) that can also act as spaces of resistance. Hence, within this era of vast global cultural flows, the city, or in other words, urban spaces play a significant role as they embrace countless amount of hybrid artistic formations of the immigrant youths. Thus, the urban space, although embarks upon what Deleuze and Guattari would term as striated spaces, it nevertheless also brings forth its own smooth spaces –which for these philosophers are associated with the nomad. Furthermore, the urban space also encapsulates what Lefebvre would mention as representational spaces, which are those spaces in relation with the lived and the everyday life. Thus, as Massey would put it, space is dynamic and never closed; where in a similar manner we could witness the never-ending new openings of the immigrants’ artistic practices. Accordingly, this paper aims to bring together all these theoretical abstractions under the analysis of one of the most recent notable film-makers/directors, who is also a second-generation Turkish immigrant in Germany: Fatih Akin. What kind of spatial alterity can be found in the filmic production of Fatih Akin? How does he represent the everyday life of the Turkish immigrants and their interaction with other people from different national or ethnic origins? In what ways do the discourses of the artistic practices such as in this case of Akin can form an opposition with those of the nation-state on a more macro level? These questions will be interrogated along the lines of where this paper has started out with; the ideas of space and spatial practices of the theoreticians mentioned above.”