Letters and Social Imaginaries

Based on the premise that in situations characterized by contingency and strife, the most meaningful self-commentary -and perhaps, the one with the greatest redemptive potential -appears in art, literature, drama, story telling, film and socio-political writings in vernacular languages as well as English. In essence, language, art, mnemonic devices and cultural production serve as key instruments of self- and collective representation, particularly in the production and legitimation of social imaginaries. Social imaginaries refer to structures of thought as historical constructs, and sets of ideas and values that give meaning to, and make sense of, societal practices, which in turn, also structure human existence and social interactions. Thus, we are particularly interested in examining cultural forms that contribute to a narrative of collective self-awareness in simultaneously local, national, and regional contexts. Such cultural products include poetry, drama, novel, film, and other art forms that engage or manifest different dimensions of self-consciousness, identity formations and crises in social collectives.