Appel à communications, « (Mis)trust, money and debt in interdisciplinary perspectives »

Appel relatif à un workshop devant se tenir le 15 juin 2018 à la LSE (Londres).

Keynote speakers : Nigel Dodd (LSE) et Déborah James (LSE).

Contenu de l’appel

Trust and faith are basic attributes of modern monetary systems. Trust is also often recognized as a public good, the maximization of which yields growth and harmony. But if we know what ‘trust’ is—or ought to be—do we therefore understand its opposite? Is ‘mistrust’ always the inverse of ‘trust’? Does mistrust lead to strictly vicious circles of societal destruction? Similarly, are narratives of bursting bubbles, economic decline and corrosive structural violence the only kinds of stories that can be told when considering money and mistrust?

This workshop aims to explore the roles, qualities and affordances of mistrust within socioeconomic life, as well as create a space for dialogues across disciplinary boundaries and methodologies. It seeks to build upon the intermittent and disciplinarily diverse writing on trust over the past decades. One core question, for example, is not as much whether we can “trust trust” (Gambetta, 1988), but just how suspicious should we be of mistrust in the first place. This signals our call for contributions that (1) suspend assumptions about the concepts of trust and mistrust and (2) explore the expression and importance of (mis)trust in diverse political economies and sociocultural settings. What do we do when we don’t have the information necessary to either trust or mistrust? How might people seek to prevent the consequences of mistrust? Can mistrust be valued in and of itself, or is it consequential to valued forms of autonomy? (Mis)trust also meshes easily with emotions such as hope, faith, love, fear and loathing. Therefore, we encourage contributors to consider the kinds of data and evidence which are needed to place such ephemeral phenomena under empirical scrutiny.

Human beings often have to cooperate with untrustworthy others. Mutual obligations and expectations are salient features of such relationships. Perhaps even more so when we talk about money and debt. So what political and economic orders do regimes of trust and mistrust afford? Are they alternatives to or complicit with autocracy and legalism? What do discourses about (mis)trust reveal or conceal about the economy, states, markets or expectations of community life? What interests and relationships accompany the expression of such moral discourses and how do they falter or gain traction? How is mistrust conceptualized and lived, and what kinds of subjunctive spaces does it cleave in intimate relations? How does (mis)trust feature in activities such as trading, lending, borrowing, brokering, paying, but also helping, caring, sharing or redistributing?

We welcome submissions that engage with, but are not exclusive to, the following questions:

A. Is trust important to the reality of contemporary money? Has this always been the case or is there something different about the contemporary moment? Is money a measure of our trust in other human beings to repay, or to share similar measures of value? Around the world, mobile money and mobile phones are reshaping the ways people share wealth and relate to one another: Are such novel technologies also reshaping the way we (mis)trust one another? What are the implications of distributed ledgers, which seek to make transactions and global supply chains transparent? Do these make trust a non-issue, or does talk about trust conceal enduring problems of value to which governance will inevitably return?

B. Is (mis)trust central to the ways people relate to the state or the market? How do creditors and debtors appeal to discourses about trust? Are there new ideologies, groups or actors that galvanize mistrust or seek to elicit trust? If so, how and to what ends? What efforts are there to foster transparency, so we know who to trust or mistrust, and on what basis are these conclusions made?

C. In what ways might legal regimes deal with the problem of trust? How do audit cultures and bureaucratic models of accountability deal with misinformation? Are legalbureaucratic symbols used to produce legitimacy and authenticity, or alternatively to exert power and effect coercion? How might legal regimes be negating the consequences of mistrust?

D. What is the relevance of cultural diversity in talk about changing attitudes regarding community and economic life? How does difference, be it along religious, class or ethnic lines, matter – or not – in people’s ability to trust others? How might (mis)trust be complicit with or emerge from narratives of growth or scarcity? Does (mis)trust feature in claims on wealth that is perceived to be abundant or excessive?

Informations pratiques

Abstracts deadline: April 15th, 2018
Send abstracts (max 300 words) to: t.m.zidaru-barbulescu@lse.ac.uk & m.laws1@lse.ac.uk


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