Registration is now open for this workshop, to be held on September 24th-25th 2010 at the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities (CRASSH), University of Cambridge. Funded by CRASSH, Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge and the Centre for East European Language Based Area Studied (CEELBAS), the workshop brings together 12 speakers whose research has explored the social and affective lives of documents in and after the Soviet Union. The event is held in the memory of Cambridge geographer, Graham Smith, in whose honour a keynote lecture will be given.
The workshop asks how papers enter the lives of those who hold them. What kinds of affective and social relations do documents elicit? What notions of person do they constitute, and, conversely, in which culturally and historically specific understandings of personhood does the ‘documented self’ come to acquire meaning? How do these documents affect and constitute geographical movement of people across the vast post-Soviet terrain and what Soviet legacies of territorial residency do they reveal? More generally, what does the proliferation of identification documents - the fact that we are not fully a person without papers, and that that these papers are not merely texts but also certain kinds of material objects - do for contemporary theoretical debates about subjects and objects, persons and things, the blurring of the social and the material?
The workshop runs over two days, beginning on the morning of Friday September 24th, and concluding with tea late on Saturday afternoon, September 25th.
Friday 24th September
Introduction to the workshop (Nikolai Ssorin-Chaikov (University of Cambridge) and Madeleine Reeves (University of Manchester))
PANEL 1: HERMENEUTICS OF SUSPICION
Igal Halfin (Department of History, Tel-Aviv University) “Notions of culpability under Stalin: how interrogations were documented and what it meant”
Ivan Peshkov (Department of History, University of Poznan) “Soviet passports for non-Soviet subjects: quasi-indigenousness, limited citizenship and double exclusion of Russians in Mongolia and China”
Sergei Sokolovskii (Moscow Institute for Ethnology) “Luxury versus ‘normality’: shop receipts and taxable self in post-Socialist Russia”
PANEL 2: HEALTH, SENSATION AND THE DOCUMENTED SELF
Golfo Alexopoulos (Department of History, University of South Florida) “Health documents and personhood in the Gulag”
Alaina Lemon (Department of Anthropology, University of Michigan) “Reading through paper: sensation, extrasens and bureaucratic authority in post-socialist Moscow”
Robert J. Kaiser (Department of Geography, University of Wisconsin – Madison) – Documented Alienation: Gray Passports and the Production of Statelessness in Post-Soviet Estonia
Saturday 25 September
PANEL 3: TRACKS OF PERSONS
Malte Griesse (Department of History, University of Bielefeld) “In the shadow of Icarus careers under Stalin: precariousness of party cards and of revolutionary past under the auspices of imposture and dissimulation”
Madeleine Reeves (Department of Social Anthropology, University of Manchester) “Fingerprints and mugshots: traces of persons in the Russian deportation regime”
PANEL 4: TEXTS AS MATERIAL OBJECTS
Yoram Gorlizki (Department of Politics, University of Manchester) “Personal letterheads and typescripts in Soviet Communist Party correspondence from 1950s to 1970s”
Nikolai Ssorin-Chaikov (Department of Social Anthropology, University of Cambridge) “Material object as text and text as material object during late socialism: gifts to Soviet leaders”
PANEL 5: PAPERWORK AND SPACE
Mantas Kvedaravicius (Department of Social Anthropology, University of Cambridge) “Purloined life: the document, the typeface and the misplaced grapheme in the counter-terror zone of the Chechen Republic”
Sarah Carton de Grammont (Laboratoire d'anthropologie des institutions et des organisations sociales/École des hautes études en sciences socials, Paris) “Entangled personhoods in entangled places: post-socialist house-craft, district-craft and personhood-craft through paperwork in the ‘garden city’ of Sokol, Moscow”
Tea and concluding discussion
Interested scholars and graduate students are welcome to attend, and should register in advance online. The workshop is small and informal, and places are limited so early registration is encouraged. Further details of the workshop, including a more detailed programme and background to the workshop, information on how to register and accommodation options in Cambridge can be found here: http://www.crassh.cam.ac.uk/events/1313/.
Queries regarding the workshop can be addressed to the conveners: Nikolai Ssorin-Chaikov (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Madeleine Reeves (email@example.com). Queries regarding registration should be addressed to Anna Malinowska at CRASSH (firstname.lastname@example.org).
For queries regarding the workshop, please contact Nikolai Ssorin-Chaikov (email@example.com) or Madeleine Reeves (firstname.lastname@example.org)
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