[URBANTH-L]Call for Papers for the 2006 Soyuz Symposium

Melissa L Caldwell lissa at ucsc.edu
Thu Sep 29 04:17:35 EDT 2005

Dear Colleagues,

Please find below the Call for Papers for the 2006 Soyuz 
Symposium, to be held at Bryant University in Smithfield, 
Rhode Island, March 3-5, 2006. Soyuz is the postcommunist 
cultural studies interest group. We encourage proposals 
from a wide variety of "postcommunist" or "postsocialist" 
communities. Please direct questions to Prof. William 
Graves at wgraves at bryant.edu, or Prof. Melissa Caldwell at 
lissa at ucsc.edu.

Thank you very much,
Melissa L. Caldwell

Walls and Bridges: Refiguring “Socialist” and 
“Postsocialist” Spaces in a Deterritorializing World

SOYUZ, the Post-Communist Cultural Studies Interest Group, 
invites paper proposals and, for the first time, poster 
proposals, for its 2006 meeting, to be held March 3-5, 
2006, at Bryant University in Smithfield, Rhode Island. 
Bryant University is conveniently located near both 
Providence, RI, and Boston. The Soyuz symposium is an 
intimate forum where scholars (including graduate 
students, junior faculty, and senior faculty) from across 
the world can exchange ideas and engage in dialogue.

The 2006 Soyuz Symposium will focus on the 
deterritorialization of postsocialism and invites papers 
and posters that propose new ethnographic, theoretical, 
and methodological models for configuring the spaces and 
places of postsocialist life. Although categories such as 
“socialism,” “late socialism,” and “postsocialism” 
continue to be central to studies of state socialist 
societies, particularly in the former Soviet Union and 
Eastern Europe, critics have argued that over-reliance on 
these categories has produced a sense of geographic, 
ethnographic, and methodological isolationism. As a 
result, boundaries created by uncritical application of 
the concepts of socialism and postsocialism may have 
prevented analysts from hearing the perspectives of 
scholars and informants who are positioned differently 
within these conceptual geographies.

Taking cues from recent globalization studies of 
deterritorialization and reterritorialization, this 
Symposium challenges participants to map out new 
conceptual frameworks that contest, query, or reject the 
traditional binary categories of socialism and 
postsocialism. In particular, we are interested in 
ethnographic work that attends carefully to local 
discourses of locality, translocality, and globality as 
alternatives to, or critical engagements with, traditional 
notions of socialism and postsocialism. Possible questions 
to consider include: To what extent is it still legitimate 
to propose a geography of socialism/postsocialism? How do 
the critical lessons from globalization studies help 
socialist/postsocialist scholars rethink the categories 
and boundaries that define and constitute our field sites 
and our scholarly conversations? Where are the borders, 
centers, and peripheries of socialism/postsocialism in a 
global, deterritorialized world, and who are our 
interlocutors? How do global technologies create, 
transform, or eliminate socialist/postsocialist 
communities? What do methodologies from globalization 
research (multi-sited fieldwork, global commodity chains, 
virtual ethnography, etc.) contribute to studies of 
socialism/postsocialism and to new research alliances?

Proposed papers and posters should be based on 
ethnographic research in a socialist or postsocialist 
society (please specify if you are proposing a paper, a 
poster, or you have no preference). Presentations and 
posters may come from any discipline (anthropology, 
sociology, folklore, political science, history, literary 
studies, etc.), but must combine solid ethnographic 
evidence with theoretical analysis. Suggested length for 
proposals is 200-400 words. Please send proposals and a 
brief c.v. to Professor William Graves 
(wgraves at bryant.edu) and Professor Melissa Caldwell 
(lissa at ucsc.edu) by December 1, 2005. Decisions will be 
made and notification sent out in early January 2006.

Melissa L. Caldwell
Assistant Professor
Department of Anthropology
321 Social Sciences I
University of California, Santa Cruz
Santa Cruz, CA 95064
Phone: 831-459-3856
E-mail: lissa at ucsc.edu

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