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Do you have an event you’d like to announce? A call for papers for a conference? Email all details to [email protected].

 

Jun
16
Sun
CFP: Cologne Summer School of Interdisciplinary Anthropology IV
Jun 16 all-day

Call for Papers (Deadline June, 16th 2019)

Cologne Summer School of Interdisciplinary Anthropology IV

“Beyond Humanism: Cyborgs – Animals – Data Swarms”

23rd – 27th September 2019 University of Cologne

During the last five decades, public, intellectual, and academic debates have created an increased awareness of so-called transhumanist discourses and social movements accompanied by a diverse body of theoretical works in philosophy, social sciences, and humanities which can broadly be described as posthumanist. Building on a three year long tradition (CSIA 2015–17) of interrogating what it means to be human in the 21st century from an interdisciplinary anthropological perspective, the Cologne Summer School of Interdisciplinary Anthropology 2019 relaunches under the title Beyond Humanism: Cyborgs

– Animals – Data Swarms. It picks up where the last CSIA left by taking a closer look at what a trans- and posthumanist agenda actually implies and how it relates to classic understandings of what it means to be human.

Organized by the Collaborative Research Center 806 “Our Way to Europe” and the a.r.t.e.s. Graduate School for the Humanities Cologne, we invite PhD students and early postdocs from all disciplines whose academic interests follow similar perspectives and questions to join us for an intense week of interdisciplinary exchange and controversial discussion. Not simply dismissing new modes of humanisms as mere social phenomena in an age of accelerated technological and cultural transformation, we aim at taking them seriously in order to understand better the shifts in contemporary concepts and controversies about the human being.

By historically tracing back modes of humanism and their counterparts (e.g. post- and transhumanism, animism, multispecies assemblages, anthropocene, cosmopolitics, etc.) and by excavating their ontological and epistemological conditions, we identify three relational contestations of what it no longer means and three imaginaries of what it nowadays means to be human. The contestations are: (1) the distribution of human subjectivity and cognition, (2) the disintegration of human individuality, and (3) the dissolution of humanity as a unique ontological category.

The imaginaries we aim to bring into a fruitful contrast and comparison with these contestations are (1) the cyborg, (2) the animal, and (3) the data swarm. Taken together, relational contestations and imaginaries serve as interrogative tools for focusing on key questions ragarding the human/technology interface:

  • What are the multiple epistemological and ontological repercussions of transhumanist and posthumanist attempts to rethink and/or replace the human as cyborg, animal, or data?
  • How is the traditional understanding of the human as a subject belonging to a class of unique beings transformed if only one or two of the constituent properties (individual, subject, member of a unique class of beings) become contested? In other words: are post- and transhumanistic agendas, politics, and concepts more humanistic than proposed?
  • How are these new modes of humanism reflected in the arts and in public opinion? How do they transform everyday actions and perceptions of others (both human and non-human)?

Regarding scholarly inspirations we would like to mention such diverse theories as Donna Haraway’s materialist-feminist concepts of the cyborg and companion species/significant otherness (2016), Michael Tomasello’s evolutionary psychology (2014), Philippe Descola’s theory of animism (2013), Mario Blaser’s reconceptualization of cosmopolitics (2016), Nick Bostrum’s assumptions about singularity and super-intelligence (2014), Gregory Bateson’s ecology of the mind (1972), Gilbert Simondon’s technological humanism (1958; cf. Guchet 2010), Bruno Latour’s modes of existence (2012), and recent trends in the continental and analytical traditions to rethink panpsychism and materialism, such as Galen Strawson, Karen Barad, and Jane Bennett.

 

The five-day summer school is jointly organized by Thiemo Breyer (CRC 806 “Our Way to Europe”), Johannes Schick, Mario Schmidt (a.r.t.e.s. Graduate School for the Humanities), Christoph Lange (Department for Social and Cultural Anthropology), and Lars Reuke (Thomas Institute). It takes an interdisciplinary approach including perspectives from anthropology, philosophy, literature studies, and archaeology. Beyond these disciplines, we especially also encourage young researchers who develop interdisciplinary projects in visual and performing arts, informatics, engineering, design studies, cognitive, and the natural sciences to apply for our summer school.

Interested PhD students and early postdocs are invited to send their application (CV, draft of project, and motivational letter) to [email protected] before June, 16th 2019.

Limited travel funds for participants of universities from the ‚Global South‘ will be available.

For general questions and inquiries please contact [email protected] or visit Beyond Humanism: Cyborgs – Animals – Data Swarms.

Jun
30
Sun
CFP: Engaging Anthropology Conference
Jun 30 all-day

Engaging Anthropology
October 3-6, 2019
University of Massachusetts Amherst
Department of Anthropology 50th Anniversary

As part of our 50th Anniversary celebrations, the Anthropology Department at the University of Massachusetts Amherst invites colleagues and collaborators, current students and alumni, faculty past and present, as well as scholars, practitioners, and activists near and far to join us for a four-day conference from October 3rd through October 6th.

At this moment of escalating precarity and deepening inequalities, of resurgent nativisms, social dislocations, and ongoing colonialism—and with climate change threatening life as we know it—we seek to explore how to mobilize anthropological theory and methods to make sense of and respond to these conditions. How might we identify and work toward alternatives?

We seek proposals for academic sessions, papers, workshops, and special events. We have also planned exciting plenaries, community engaged workshops, dinners and socials, and events that reflect on the history of the department.

 

Conference Events and Themes

Our conference theme, Engaging Anthropology, is meant to highlight the importance of ongoing engagements with the many challenges of the day. In line with our department’s history and the field’s diversity of orientations towards research, teaching, and practice, sessions around our theme of Engaging Anthropology might include any of these areas (though you need not limit your submissions to these areas).

  • Bio-Cultural Synthesis
  • New Directions in Archaeology and Social Justice
  • Marxism today
  • Engaged Pedagogy
  • Evolutionary Anthropology
  • Critical Heritage Studies
  • Activism and Organizing
  • Medical Anthropology and Global Health
  • Whiteness and Racism
  • Feminist & Queer Theory’s impact for Anthropology
  • Indigenous Epistemologies & Methods
  • Anthropology of Europe
  • Political Ecology and Environmental Anthropology

 

Plenaries

 

Distinguished Lecturer in the Anthropology of Europe

Lilith Mahmud, Associate Professor of Anthropology, University of California Irvine
 
Archaeology of the 21st Century

Jason De León, Professor of Anthropology and Chicana/o Studies, University of California, Los Angeles

Black Feminism Today

Whitney Battle-Baptiste, Associate Professor of Anthropology and Director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Center, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Amanda Walker Johnson, Associate Professor of Anthropology, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Dana-Ain Davis, Professor of Anthropology and Director of the Center for the Study of Women and Society, Graduate Center, CUNY

Engaging the Present, Envisioning the Future

Arturo Escobar, Kenan Distinguished Professor of Anthropology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Stephen Healy, Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Culture and Society at Western Sydney University and member of the Community Economies Collective.

Registration and Proposal Submission

You are invited to attend as a general participant.  We also seek papers, presentations, events, workshops, posters, and other activities that engage the discipline of anthropology in critical dialogue and mobilize anthropological theory and methods towards transformative practice.

Click here for general registration, abstract submission, and for more information.

https://umass.irisregistration.com/Site/Anthro

 

Please contact the conference planning committee at [email protected] with questions or for additional information.

Join the Facebook event site at https://www.facebook.com/events/225899184991945/ or visit the conference page for updates https://www.umass.edu/anthro/engaging-anthropology

Sep
1
Sun
2019 Praxis Award Competition
Sep 1 all-day

Recognizing Excellence in Practitioner Anthropology

THE 2019 PRAXIS AWARD COMPETITION

Since 1981, the Washington Association of Professional Anthropologists’ (WAPA) biennial Praxis Award competition has recognized outstanding achievement in translating anthropological knowledge into action as reflected in a single project or specific endeavor. Ideal award candidates are anthropologists who can demonstrate the value of anthropological knowledge, theory and methods to solve problems addressed through public and/or private sector efforts (e.g., government, industry, or non-profit).

Award recipients will receive a $1000 prize and will be recognized at a Praxis Award ceremony and reception at the 2020 meeting of the Society for Applied Anthropology. For further information, requirements, and a list of past award recipients, please see https://wapadc.org/praxis. A brief pre-application (2 pages) is encouraged. Both the pre-application and full application templates are available on the Praxis Awards Guidelines page.

The competition is open to anyone holding an MA or PhD in any subfield of anthropology. WAPA strongly encourages submissions from individuals, mixed-discipline groups, or organizations where at least one anthropologist worked on and influenced the designated project. Entries are encouraged from anthropologists worldwide. All entries will be evaluated by an expert panel of anthropological practitioners.

Key Dates:

  • Optional pre-application deadline: July 1, 2019
  • Full application deadline: September 1, 2019
  • Awardees and other applicants notified: January 2020
  • Praxis award(s) presented: March 2020

Please direct questions to [email protected], noting Praxis in the subject line. Pre-applications and applications should be submitted to [email protected].

Sep
7
Sat
CFP: South African Society for Critical Theory Conference
Sep 7 all-day

Contested Identities: Critical Conceptualisations of the Human

November 22–23, 2019

 

The South African Society for Critical Theory (SASCT) invites abstract submissions of up to 500 words for its 3rd Annual Conference which will take place at the Howard College Campus of the University of KwaZulu-Natal, from the 22nd to the 23rd of November 2019.

SASCT invites papers which address the vexed notion of the “human” in the contemporary age. As part of such considerations, this conference welcomes papers that consider the possibilities and pitfalls of identity theory in relation to Critical Theory. What analytic and conceptual resources does identity politics offer Critical Theory? What might a critical analysis of identity politics reveal? Do identity politics serve as an instance of a process whereby we come to view our own individuality in terms of pre-constructed cultural categories? What stance should Critical Theory adopt towards identity politics?

This conference also welcomes papers that explore the concept of “the human” and “human nature” from a critical perspective. What, for instance, might we construe as “essential” human characteristics? Is critical reason to be understood as such a characteristic? Is the question of the “human’ even meaningful any longer? Would the attempt to define the “human” in its present historico-social conditions enable us to map its future trajectory? Would the attempt to formulate such a definition facilitate liberation or merely serve a repressive ideological function? If the “human” or “human nature” are no longer meaningful categories, then what is it that Critical Theory aims to liberate? Has the technological mediation of existence altered our understanding of humanity? In short, what is the future of the “human”?

The conference welcomes approaches from all aspects of Critical Theory, broadly construed. In particular, the conference welcomes papers that address issues relating to: African Critical Theory, Digital Culture, the intersections between Critical Theory of European origin (Frankfurt School, Foucault, etc.), Black Existentialism, and Africana Critical Theory as well as contributions on any and all aspects of Critical Theory, e.g. the 3 generations of Frankfurt School Critical Theory, Postcolonial Theory, De-colonial Theory, Critical Feminism, Critical Film Studies, Critical Race Theory, Critical Theory of Technology, Critical Legal Studies, Post-structuralism, Psychoanalysis, Critical Hermeneutics, Liberation Theory, Critical Pedagogy, Critical Theology, Critical Anthropology, etc. 

The Conference organisers would also appreciate papers that address thinkers whose work lies outside the “canon” of Critical Theory, but whose work can extend current research in Critical Theory or whose work in itself embodies alternative forms of Critical Theory. Whilst the organisers encourage contributions that address the conference theme, the theme itself should be viewed as merely suggestive.

Please submit abstracts to [email protected] by the 7th September 2019 Acceptance letters will be sent by the 21st of September at the latest.

Should you have queries regarding any aspect of the conference then please do not hesitate to contact the conference organising committee.

Oct
15
Tue
CFP: Just Code: Power, Inequality, and the Global Political Economy of IT
Oct 15 all-day

Just Code: Power, Inequality, and the Global Political Economy of IT

Just Code is a one and a half day CBI symposium/workshop on how code—construed broadly, from software routines to bodies of law and policy—structures and reinforces power relations. It will explore the often invisible ways that individuals and institutions use software, algorithms, and computerized systems to establish, legitimize, and reinforce widespread social, material, commercial, and cultural inequalities and power imbalances. The event will also examine how individuals, unions, political organizations, and other institutions use code to fight for equality and justice. Other major themes include the (pre-)history of code/algorithmic thinking; code as means of concealment or secret communications; codes of conduct in business, governance, and culture related to IT and its institutions (local and global exploitation through imperialism, human rights violations, and environmental degradation); and codes of ethics in information technology. The papers will draw from across the humanities and qualitative social sciences, including disciplines such as anthropology, sociology, science and technology studies, geography, and communications. We anticipate that papers (collectively) will examine a wide range of themes in the global business, cultural, social, legal, and environmental history of the political economy of information technology. Papers will be pre-circulated (among presenters) and we have plans to publish revised papers (after editorial and peer review) as an edited volume in the Springer History of Computing Book Series.

 

Submission and Dates

Proposals should include a two-page curriculum vitae and a 300 to 450 word abstract (as a single PDF) that highlights the key argument(s), connection of the paper to the symposium’s topic/themes, and a description of core methods/sources.  This should be sent to cbi at umn.edu (please have your last name in the file name and use the subject line “Just Code Symposium Proposal”).

Deadline for Paper Proposals is Oct. 15, 2019 (notifications will be made within 30 days)

Deadline for Submission of Papers (for those offered and accepting a place on the program) is March 31, 2020 (papers will only be pre-circulated to fellow presenters/panelists on the program, not to all registrants).

Those offered and accepting a spot on the program will have to commit to participating in the entire workshop, revising their work based on feedback from peers at the event and the organizers/editors, and submitting it for consideration to the planned edited volume.

For those offered and accepting a place on the symposium’s program (presenters/panelists), CBI will cover the cost of 2 nights lodging at a nearby hotel (walking distance to CBI), lunch, and an event dinner. Early career presenters on the program (graduate students, postdocs, and junior faculty) can apply for CBI travel grants of $300 to partially offset their travel costs (done as a reimbursement/partial reimbursement). Please indicate if you would like to be considered for one of these travel grants at the bottom of your abstract.  The program will commence at 8:30 AM on Friday May 8 and conclude at 12:30 PM on Saturday May 9. Registration is automatic for everyone on the program.

For those wanting to attend who are not presenting, the symposium’s registration is free and open to CBI Friends (and those who become CBI Friends), and to students, academic staff, and faculty of the Univ. of Minnesota.  Lunch is provided for all who register. The event dinner is only for those on the program. Information on becoming a CBI Friend is at http://www.cbi.umn.edu/about/friends.html

Registration form for those attending but not presenting. The size will be capped, so we encourage registering far in advance. https://forms.gle/KK5n37jhN1Mdnyxp9

The event will be at CBI–Andersen Library at the University of Minnesota