David Fleming
It's All Academic   www.davidflemingsite.com   
When Academic Conferences Bottom Out

November 12, 2015

God help me, the armageddon is a-coming: academics from around the world have decided that we need a symposium on the Kardashians. 

I do get cultural studies as an academic movement.  Of all people, I certainly most understand the intersection of academic thought with the the impact of popular cultural movements.  I guess I just prefer a greater distance between the movement and the analysis of it.  2015 might be the year to have a truly objective discussion of Beatlemania. 

I think the worst part may be the cutesy title, "Kimposium," which might not be the official title, but at this point, who cares?  Even if the organizers have a meatier title, the supeficiality, albeit appropriate, has taken over the academic investigation of it. 

So, actually, my beef here is more with the marketing of this conference.  Are we merely opening the doors for the following?

The Slimposium -- Slim Whitman and the loss of the yodel

The Jimposium -- Jim Nabors and shifting images of male sexuality

The JimposeJim -- Over-reacting to over-acting from Jim J. Bullock to Jim Carrey

The Simsposium -- When virtual life is more exciting than real life

The Swimposium -- Michael Phelps and Speedos: America's fascination with the butterfly stroke

The Timposium -- The uneasy connection between faith and sport through Tim Tebow

The TimposeTim -- What could have been with Tim Curry and Tim Burton collaborations

The TimposeJim -- The 70s and unheralded comic genius: Tim Conway and Jim Backus

The SymRoseium -- Female roles in James Cameron movies

The SymBosium -- The peculiar likelihood of Big Ten sports teams led by Bo's (Schembechler to Ryan to Pelini)

The SymFlosium -- The evolution of the sassy waitress

The SymBeauGrimm -- How would fairy tale adaptations be altered with the presence of Beau Bridges

The DimBeauKim -- Analyzing the men that court Kardashians

The SlimProseSkim -- Appropriate reactions to the proliferation of blogs written and tossed out without much substance

Yeah, sure, I know this blog falls into that last category. However, I am not sure the Kardashians deserve more than 15 minutes of focus, a conference on them even less.  Commenting on that conference deserves even less time.