The 21st century has seen various upheavals and a continuous resurgence of protest revolutions leading to social change. We can take as an example the Arab Spring, that took place in North Africa and in the Middle East, from 2010 onwards. These movements fought for justice, democracy, human rights, the dignity of life, and against police and/or (para)military abuses. In the same period, several protests also erupted because of the financial crisis, mainly in southern European countries. In other contexts, such as Brazil, Hong Kong, Kenya or Senegal, there have also been massive dynamics of protest, directed at power. At the same time, the post-pandemic period saw large-scale wars break out. The 21st century has been marked by constant global insecurity, in the sense that there have been several military and political confrontations, from Ukraine and Russia, through the conflicts in Sudan, Israel and Palestine.

At the same time, we are witnessing the rise of populism, xenophobic and homophobic discourses, employed by a far-right that threatens a set of values that we thought were guaranteed. Change, resistance and opposition have often been brought about through art. In the present century we are witnessing the revival of political art. It is increasingly common for artists to engage in the defense of political ideologies and in the elaboration of activist practices engaged with different social movements — such as climate justice, feminist, LGBTQIA+, anti-racist movements, among others. This notion of political art dialogues with multiple performance practices and performativities related to the broader field of artistic creation. These aesthetic and visual protests, in fact, demonstrate the transformative potential of individuals as social agents, that is, they show that any individual is capable of carrying out aesthetic-political actions. Historically, the arts have been associated with revolutionary processes of various types. In addition to the collective dimension of the revolution, artists who adopted a political position and portrayed revolution and protest in their artistic creations are also important. The focus of the fifth international conference COMbART focuses on the intersection of three thematic and analytical dimensions: revolutions, protests and artivisms, recovering the notion of aesthetic-political activism. In this call for proposals, we deal with the axis of praxis but also with the creative ethos, deepening the relationship between theory, practice, protest and social change, in its most radical sense: with political-visual positions. We seek to understand the ways in which aesthetic-political action is associated with an order of practices, such as poetic terrorism and Hakim Bey's art of sabotage; the countersexuality of Paul B. Preciado; or the guerrilla art of Frederico Morais and Luis Camnitzer, to give just a few examples. With the notion of aesthetic- political activism, we intend to put bodies and voices in evidence, mapping their role of criticism/promotion, in relation to the concept of revolution and protest. We intend to deepen the myriad of connections between artistic practices and aesthetic-political activisms and to envisage changes in the form of social and digital protest in contemporary times.
** Over the last few years, the COMbART conference has been a forum for discussion around engaged creative and artistic practices. We understand that art, culture, as well as a set of other creative practices not included in these categories, can constitute expressive fields with a relevant role in the way citizenship is built in contemporary times. **

The fifth international COMbART conference is a collaboration between different entities. The organization involves the Institute of Sociology of the University of Porto (IS-UP), the Interdisciplinary Center for Social Sciences (CICS. NOVA), the Transdisciplinary Research Centre «Culture, Space and Memory» (CITCEM) and LabEA - Laboratory for Research in Art Education / FBAUP. Also partners of this event are the Luso-Brazilian All the Arts Network (TAA) and the Luso-Brazilian Research Network in Arts and Urban
Interventions (RAIU). It is thus intended to bring together a diverse set of knowledge, disciplines and arts, opening the submission of proposals to researchers from areas such as sociology, anthropology, history, art history, cultural and creative industries, cultural economy, cultural and social geography, urban planning, cultural studies, communication sciences and related disciplines. such as illustration, music, performance, film, visual and performing arts and new technologies.

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