The Eurasia Program of the Social Science Research Council invites applications for a dissertation workshop to be held in late March 2001. Graduate students in any social science discipline who are currently writing dissertations focusing on Central Asia and the Caucasus are eligible to apply. Applications from other fields are welcome as long as they are grounded in social science theory and methodology. Comparative or cross-regional projects that include, but are not limited to, Central Asia and the Caucasus are also encouraged (particularly ones which examine these areas in relation to the former Soviet Union or the Middle East). The overall objectives of the workshop are to explore the state of Central Asian and Caucasian studies, encourage new approaches through multidisciplinary and comparative perspectives, and reflect on how new research on these areas is contributing to shifts in prevalent understandings of the “field” (in terms of discipline and/or area studies).
The workshop will be held in the United States (location to be announced) and will involve 14 doctoral students and 5 faculty participants who will convene for three days of intensive and critical discussion of both the students’ dissertation projects, as well as larger theoretical and methodological issues.
The workshop is open with respect to thematic concerns or methodological approaches, however projects addressing any of the following issues will be received with particular interest:
Reflections on pre-Soviet, Soviet and post Soviet alignments of power and culture, including the changing relations between Russia and the states of Central Asia and the Caucasus and the new regional and global links being forged with the Middle East, Europe and the United States.
Relationships between local specificities and national and transnational processes.
Dynamics of national and national-religious movements.
Exploration of identities, histories and narratives that reflect, contest and transform political and social boundaries.
New approaches, methodologies and sources of data, with a particular focus on the significance and challenges of multidisciplinary research.
To apply for the workshop, please submit the following:
Copy of dissertation proposal as well as a letter (or similar proof) stating that the proposal has been approved by the students’ department
Five page double spaced summary of the dissertation project highlighting its relationship to the objectives of the workshop
One letter of academic recommendation
If selected, participants will be required to submit two chapters of their dissertation: the introduction and one additional chapter of their choice. These will be due by February 10th, 2000 to be circulated to all participants prior to the workshop. The SSRC will cover all transportation, accommodation and related expenses for workshop participants.
To be eligible, applicants must be US citizens or permanent residents, currently enrolled in an accredited Ph.D. program, and at the writing stage of their dissertation projects. The deadline for the receipt of applications is December 15th, 2000. Decisions regarding final participants will be announced by January 20th, 2001.
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