5th Global Conference
Diasporas: Exploring Critical Issues
Friday 29th June 2012 – Sunday 1st July 2012
Mansfield College, Oxford, United Kingdom
Call for Papers:
This inter- and multi-disciplinary project seeks to explore the contemporary experience of Diasporas – communities who conceive of themselves as a national, ethnic, linguistic or other form of cultural and political construction of collective membership living outside of their ‘home lands.’ Diaspora is a concept which is far from being definitional. Despite problems and limitations in terminology, this notion may be defined with issues attached to it for a more complete understanding. Such a term which may have its roots in Greek, is used customarily to apply to a historical phenomenon that has now passed to a period that usually supposes that Diasporas are those who are settled forever in a country other from where they were born and thus this term has lost its dimension of irreversibility and of exile.
In order to increase our understanding of Diasporas and their impact on both the receiving countries and their respective homes left behind, key issues will be addressed related to Diaspora cultural expression and interests. In addition, the conference will address the questions: Do Diasporas continue to exist? Is the global economy, media and policies sending different messages about diaspora to future generations?
Papers, workshops, presentations and pre-formed panels are invited on any of the following themes:
1. Movies and Diasporas
The presence and impact of displaced / globalized populations of audiences, spectators and producers of new mainstream /Hollywood /Bollywood cinema are crucial to the emergence of this post-diasporic cinema, as these narratives from texts to screen constitute a fundamental challenge for the negotiation of complex diasporic issues
2. Motivational Factors for Research into Diaspora
Factors are numerous including most prominently, artistic and musical creations, intellectual outputs, and specific religious practices and which have made a significant international impact.
3. Myths and Symbols: how to meet, and get to know each other through the use of créative lenses Diasporas group, re-group and their group myths and symbols change accordingly. Or Diasporas remain dominated, their myths and symbols mirror (or rebel) their domination. This manifestation could take in linguistic, artistic and other creative forms…right down to graffiti to propaganda. The effects of Diaspora through a creative lens, as often this is where the true effects of migration and cultural adjustment expose themselves in a personal and celebratory way. These could include:
* Creative Expression as a result of shifting and integrating cultures. Cross cultural and cross disciplinary practices / cross cultural collaboration / representing the self and the nation / connecting history to the future / third space practice
* Shifting Art Practices and how traditional folk based art forms (art / music / literature / dance) can accommodate and represent modern diasporic communities in flux
* New Languages that represent broken boundaries such as graffiti / rap / interactive & web based art forms / global design aesthetics / symbolism / sound & vision / poetry and text / Esperanto
4. Public, Private and Virtual Spaces of Diaspora
The controversial meaning of private/public spaces remain fundamental arenas in the re/construction of gendered identities in an in-between space as a Diaspora context nurtures challenges to traditional socio-cultural behaviors. Virtual Diasporas – This questions a range of pre conceived notions about physicality, actuality and place (which in turn open up the discussions around ownership, representation and nation). Virtual diasporas are not limited to the arts of course but the shifts toward new technologies within art and design production are highlighting such issues through various forms of creativity and the critique that surrounds it.
We anticipate that these and related issues will be of interest to those working/researching in philosophy, education, ethics, cinematic / literature, politics, sociology, history, architecture, photography, geography, globalization, international relations, refugee studies, migration studies, urban studies and cultural studies.
5. Novel ways to think about Diaspora due to globalization
In the new global world in which cultures act simultaneously how should we be thinking about Diaspora?
Some pertinent questions in this area that the conference is interested in addressing are: What are some of the ways to identity and define the subject in changing political boundaries where cultural interactions are amplified? What are the processes of social formation and reformation of? Diasporas that is unique to a global age? How do an intensified migration age that is coupled with broader and more flexible terrains of social structures can give Diaspora communities a window of opportunity to redefine their social position in both the country of origin and the host country? How does immigration in an age where the media and the internet are highly accessible, bring individuals to deal with multiple levels of traditions and cultures? What new cross-’ethnoscapes’ and cross-’ideoscapes’ are emerging in? In what new methods can we capture the web of forces that influences Diasporas at the same time?
Other aspects of Diaspora that we are interested in having discussions about are:
* Economics of diaspora
* Gendered diasporas
* Queer diasporas ‘flexible citizenship’
* Contested diasporic identities
* Invisible diasporas
* Emerging and changing patterns – is there an ‘American diaspora’ in China? In Dubai? Etc.
* Stateless or homeless diasporas – diasporas of no return
* Guest workers as diasporans?
* Diasporas created by shifting state boundaries
* Internal (intranational diasporas) – for example, First Nations or Indigenous/Native migration into urban areas
* Diasporans by adoption or ‘diasporans-in-law’ (partners of diasporans adopted into diasporic communities, extended diasporas through family relations, etc.)
* Overlapping diasporas, entanglement
* Competing claims or multiple claims on diasporans Inter-diasporan or multi-diasporan realities
The Steering Group particularly welcomes the submission of pre-formed panel proposals. Papers will also be considered on any related theme. 300 word abstracts should be submitted by Friday 13th January 2012. If an abstract is accepted for the conference, a full draft paper should be submitted by Friday 11th May 2012. Abstracts should be submitted simultaneously to both Organising Chairs; abstracts may be in Word, WordPerfect, or RTF formats with the following information and in this order:
a) author(s), b) affiliation, c) email address, d) title of abstract, e) body of abstract, f) up to 10 keywords.
E-mails should be entitled: DIAS5 Abstract Submission.
Please use plain text (Times Roman 12) and abstain from using footnotes and any special formatting, characters or emphasis (such as bold, italics or underline). Please note that a Book of Abstracts is planned for the end of the year. We acknowledge receipt and answer to all paper proposals submitted. If you do not receive a reply from us in a week you should assume we did not receive your proposal; it might be lost in cyberspace! We suggest, then, to look for an alternative electronic route or resend.
Dr S. Ram Vemuri
School of Law and Business
Faculty of Law, Business and Arts
Charles Darwin University
Network Founder and Leader
The conference is part of the ‘Diversity and Recognition’ series of research projects, which in turn belong to the At the Interface programmes of ID.Net. It aims to bring together people from different areas and interests to share ideas and explore various discussions which are innovative and challenging. All papers accepted for and presented at the conference will be published in an ISBN eBook. Selected papers may be invited to go forward for development into 20-25 page chapters for publication in a themed dialogic ISBN hard copy volume.
For further details of the project, please visit:
For further details of the conference, please visit:
Please note: Inter-Disciplinary.Net is a not-for-profit network and we are not in a position to be able to assist with conference travel or subsistence.
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