Dates: 12-15 February 2014
Location: Chicago, USA
Deadline for submissions: 6 May 2013
Session chair: Carma Gorman, Southern Illinois University Carbondale, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Product designers, graphic designers, and fashion designers all work within the constraints of a constellation of state, national, and international laws and standards governing patents, trademarks, copyrights, copylefts, licensing, product configurations, color specifications, rules of origin, trade agreements, labor conditions, liability, accessibility, environmental protection, and so on. Although legal scholars have written extensively on these issues, relatively few humanistic scholars of design (among them Lawrence Busch, Howell John Harris, Sarah S. Lochlann Jain, Otakar Macel, Frederic J. Schwartz, and T’ai Smith) have examined how laws and standards have shaped manufacturers’, clients’, and designers’ decision-making and creative processes, and, in turn, how these groups’ practices have reshaped the law. This session therefore seeks papers that address the ways in which laws and standards have shaped or constrained the manufacture, configuration, or circulation of consumer products, graphics, and garments (or vice versa), either in the past or present. Both traditional scholarly analyses and first-person “constraint narratives” by designers are welcome.
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