Calls for papers – Conferences taking place in February 2018

James Joyce: The Joys of Exile: The X James Joyce Italian Foundation Conference in Rome
Rome, Italy, 1-3 February 2018
Deadline for abstracts: 26 November 2017

The James Joyce Italian Foundation invites proposals for the Eleventh Annual Conference in Rome. It will be hosted by the Department of Foreign Languages, Literatures and Cultures at the Università Roma Tre, to celebrate Joyce’s 136th birthday.

Exile is among the foremost theme’s in Joyce ouvre, but it also became an “arm” he allowed himself “to use”. From Dubliners to Finnegans Wake the “note of banishment” and exile resonates in so many ways that it would be difficult to imagine Joyce as a non-exilic subject.

We invite scholars to send proposals for a 20-minute contribution. The conference will be the occasion to present unpublished papers and works in progress on Joyce to an international audience.

Related topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Exile as a narrative strategy in Joyce
  • Joyce and exile in the literary canon
  • Joyce and exile in the tradition of the Irish novel
  • Joyce, Europe and Exile
  • Joyce, Great Britain and Exile
  • Joyce, Celtic Countries and Exile
  • Joyce, Exile(s) and Drama
  • Joyce among expatriates
  • Silence, exile and cunning in Joyce’s works
  • Joyce and the Irish diaspora
  • Joyce as an Irish/European writer
  • Joyce and emigration
  • Joyce at home and abroad

Key note speakers will be announced in September.

Selected papers will be published. Please send abstracts, 250-500 words in length, along with a short bio-sketch to
The Conference includes a Joycean birthday party.
Deadline for proposals: November 26, 2017.
Accepted speakers will be notified by December 15, 2017.

On arrival, participants will be expected to sign up for membership of The James Joyce Italian Foundation (Students: 25 Euro; Individual Membership: 35 Euro; Faculty: 50 Euro; supporting members : 70 euro).
Accepted speakers can apply for the Giorgio Melchiori Grants. Please visit the James Joyce Italian Foundation website for information:

(posted 1 July 2017)

Precarity, Populism and Post-Truth Politics
Universidad de Córdoba, Spain, 1-3 February 2018
Deadline for proposals: 30 September 2017

This three-day event—a two-day conference followed by a workshop on the third day—aims to interrogate the multiple and overlapping global processes underlying three emergent relational fields or modes of enquiry: precarity, populism and post-truth politics. As a network, we are committed to the pursuit of arguments and ideas that will foster articulation of research questions and positions and the construction of one or more interlinked, interdisciplinary projects. We seek to identify the interconnections between precarity, populism and post-truth politics in ways that will enable the development of cross-cutting thematic and theoretical approaches to these manifestations of global inequality, injustice and tension.

Judith Butler first introduced the concept of precarity in Precarious Life: The Powers of Mourning and Violence (2004), defined as a type of precariousness by which human life can be understood from a collective, communal and interdependently political point of view. Whereas all lives are born precarious—i.e. vulnerable and hence finite—precarity refers to a “politically induced condition” (2009, 25) derived from (in)action on the part of social and economic systems, usually maintained by nation-states, which fail to protect human lives from physical impairment for reasons such as disease, poverty, starvation, or political violence. In a similar way poverty also has been reframed by Amartya Sen and Martha Nussbaum as not just material deprivation but a failure of the world system, due to social cultural exclusion, lack of agency and access to rights and capabilities.

In these contexts, a new form of populism has recently emerged, albeit not unprecedented in history, as a powerful social response, tainted by xenophobia, which emphasises the need for protection against perceived threats to national security, health and well-being, employment and living standards. More peripheral groups, often aided by Non-Governmental Organizations, independent associations, Refugee Councils or other transnational agencies, have traditionally been targets of populism; but recently more affluent social sectors have also begun to experience conditions of precarity, to demonstrate hostility towards immigrants, and to demand sovereignty, as with Brexit, or secession, as with Catalonia in Spain. Examples include the European austerity policies and the emergence of right wing political parties and pressure groups such as UKIP, the Front National (France), The Golden Dawn (Greece) and the Freedom Party (Netherlands), which both foster and are symptomatic of the opposition between the haves and the have-nots. This growing fracture entails the dehumanization and/or reification of the Other, rendering asylum seekers, illegal migrants or refugees—i.e. border subjects—considered outside national and ethnic boundaries, as unintelligible and unrecognizable.

This per se intricate situation of our contemporary moment is complemented by a third phenomenon, known as “post-truth”, a term which was awarded the Oxford Dictionaries Word of the Year in 2016. Post-truth, usually associated with the noun “politics,” is described by the Oxford Dictionary of English (ODE) as “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief”. The complex interrelationship between precarity and populism is thus marked by the unparalleled mass media impact on our globalized era and the tendency towards distortion of the news in the press and social media. Factual events are set aside; emotional appeals are foregrounded. This implies that reality is multifarious, kaleidoscopic and that multiple overlapping and sometimes colliding “truths” co-exist. Global issues of poverty worldwide (regardless of whether those areas are classified as developed or developing countries) are in danger of being overlooked and political governments and agencies are faced with ethical and aesthetic issues of representation, concerning aspects of voice, agency and authenticity.

In taking up the critical concepts of this three-field intersection, we suggest precarity, populism and post-truth politics can be interpreted through the lens of racial, gender, or ethnic discrimination, silencing, censorship and marginalization on the part of governments, corporations or other forces, leading to violence and terror and ecological degradation in the context of fierce neo-liberal capitalism.

This International Conference also proposes to examine precarity, populism and post-truth politics through multiple research disciplines, ranging from sociology, economics, ethnography, anthropology, literary and comparative studies, visual and media studies, translation, among others, by focusing on individual or collective cases, imaginative responses, and theoretical or experimental approaches. The aim of this conference is to provide a multi- and transdisciplinary platform which will allow delegates to (un)settle, (re)frame, and analyse the global issues from multiple viewpoints as well as their cultural representation.

We invite abstracts that focus on, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Global Health and Safety, starvation and housing
  • National and transnational terrorism, war, and violence
  • Subalternity, marginality, poverty, and economic inequality
  • Gender, sexuality, poverty, and precarity
  • Diasporas, immigration and global population trends and growth
  • Mass media representations of economy, democracy and global conflict
  • Depletion of natural resources, ecological degradation and the Anthropocene
  • Imperialistic globalization of cultures
  • Human Rights, refugees, asylum seekers, illegal migrants and social activism
  • Populisms and aesthetics
  • Global emergence of right wing ideologies
  • NGOs, UN and other corporate stakeholders
  • Racism, discrimination, and ontologies of the grievable
  • The role of censorship in mass media and cultural representations
  • Neo-liberal capitalism and human sustainability
  • The role of science and technology in poverty, populism and the post-truth era
  • The humanities and social sciences in the global world
  • Truthiness, Truth and Post-Truth Politics: political discourse and consciousness
  • Scapes of poverty and precarity and its representational practices
  • Contested representations of precarity, populism and post-truth phenomena
  • Political separatisms, populism and Brexit
  • Literary and visual representations of precarity, populism, post-truth politics
  • Ethics and aesthetics in the representations of poverty

Elleke Boehmer (University of Oxford, UK)
Tabish Khair (Aarhus University, Denmark)

We invite abstracts of 300-400 words for 20-minute papers which can be either oral or virtual. If virtual this should be stated on the abstract as instructions about content and delivery will be sent on acceptance. Proposals for 90 minutes panels, with a 500-word justification in addition to individual abstracts of 300 words, are also welcome. Please include personal information (name, affiliation, contact information) with the abstract, and send it to the following:
Om Dwivedi, Sri Ramswaroop Memorial University, Lucknow, India (
Cristina M. Gámez-Fernández, University of Cordova, Spain (
Janet Wilson, University of Northampton, UK (
Deadline: 30 September 2017.
Notification of acceptance: 31 October 2017.

(posted 11 July 2017)

Music and Political Power: Practices, discourse, ideology
Université de Bourgogne, Dijon, France, 8-9 February 2018
Deadline for proposals: 31 July 2017

This cross-disciplinary conference aims at exploring the relationship between music as an art form and music as part of a political establishment.

As for all aesthetic expressions, music is connected to society at multiple levels and can be viewed as a multi-layered phenomenon—music as a collective or individual expression, music as a minority experience or a common cultural reference, music for the masses or as shared by a specific community, etc.

It can also take place in a variety of contexts: ritual, liturgical, military, festive, touristic, etc. Music can thus be viewed as art, as a product or as a symbol.
Within the social field, music can also be treated as a commodity, by the corporate or political powers, in the private or public field, and contributors could study how the two can be dissociated or associated.

Music is the subject of official interventions through various channels, local and national, that organize events (festivals, state-owned theatres and institutions), produce discourse and degrees (school curriculum, college syllabuses). One could also study the conditions and criteria of such interventions.

There are also many ways institutions use music, starting with national anthems as well as other musical contents used in many types of ceremonies, which points to the pragmatic and symbolic dimension of such practices.

One could pay particular attention to the notion of discourse, wondering whether institutional intervention produces a ‘discourse’, ie a set of principles, arguments, stances that express a form of ideology. Is music itself carrying a ‘message’ reflecting the demands of political powers? Is music a counterpoint to or the natural outgrowth of institutional ideology? Is there such a thing as official music? What kind of independence can music have in such a context?

The papers may focus on the interaction in the music field between institutional discourse (representations and ideology of art) and the practices that give it shape (incentives, grants, urban development…), but also between institutional discourse and the discourse produced by musicians, producers, programmers, etc.

The tensions between artistic freedom and institutional limitations, between aesthetic and political stances, also involve music as a professional field concerned by attitudes of obedience or independence, a border that is not always easy to discern among entities that can be public, private or a mixture of both (record labels, media, non-for-profit organizations, communications agency…). The (dis)continuity between resistance or adhesion on the musicians’ part when dealing with institutions, in deeds or words, can also be an important topic.

The papers will seek to analyse practices and discourse to determine how art and institutions interact, in terms of constraint, authority, legitimacy or emancipation.

Contemporary France is a case in point with its dense bureaucratic network managing the arts but this conference has no limitations of time or place. Papers will deal with various eras and places in a cross-disciplinary spirit, stressing major phenomena rather than local, limited or anecdotal cases.

Papers may be based on a large range of disciplines—sociology, musicology, history, political sciences, philosophy, literature, discourse analysis, anthropology, linguistics, etc.
Presentations will be 30 minutes long (+ 10 minutes for questions), in French or English.
Please submit a 500-word abstract (with five bibliographical references) before 31st July to:
Stéphanie Benoist :
David Bousquet :
Jean Szlamowicz :

Acceptance of papers will be notified around mid-September.
Registration fees: 60 euros.
We plan to publish a selection of papers.
Organising committee: Stéphanie Benoist, David Bousquet, Jean Szlamowicz (centre TIL)

(posted 20 June 2017)

Negotiating Waters: Seas, Oceans and Passageways in the Colonial and Postcolonial Anglophone World
ILCEA 4, University of Grenoble Alpes, France, 15-16 February 2018
Deadline for proposals: 15 October 2017

In close collaboration with Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN), Canada, the University of Grenoble Alpes is organizing an international conference on February 15-16, 2018 on seas and oceans in the Colonial and Postcolonial World. This conference seeks to examine how seas and oceans have shaped and reshaped cultural identities, spurred stories of reunion and separation and redefined entire nations. In the history of human migration, entire communities have crossed seas and oceans, voluntarily or not, to settle in foreign lands and undergo identity, cultural and literary transformations. Deleuze and Guattari once wrote that, even though the sea has often been considered a smooth space, it is nevertheless a space that humans attempt to striate, transform and submit to the land. As a result, seas and oceans have always been at the heart of political (narratives of exploration, cartography), international (maritime law), identity (insularity) and literary issues (survival narratives, fishing stories).

The conference is organized around four thematic clusters: Crossing, Harbours, Islands, the Environment.

We encourage proposals from scholars in all disciplines: History, Literature, Environment Studies, Images, etc.
Deadline for abstracts (300 words) and bio: October 15th 2017
Abstracts are to be sent to the organizers:
André Dodeman (Université Grenoble Alpes):
Nancy Pedri (Memorial University of Newfoundland):

(posted 12 June 2017)