Monthly Archives: July 2007

Catastrophic Space: an interactive tour of Beirut

Laurie King-Irani posted on her blog a link to this interactive map of one of Beirut’s neighborhoods.

Can we consider ‘war’ as a kind of environmental migratory force?


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Filed under multimedia, op ed, research, vox populi

Asia, Pacific Rim, Middle East – Global essays on ethnicity

We seek essays from multiple disciplinary perspectives for an edited volume on race and ethnicity in global perspective. This work uses a chronological topical approach to the study of race and ethnicity in history and contemporary society. We particularly seek essays on the following topics:
Color and Caste in the Indus Valley
China’s Ethnic Minorities
Religion and Ethnicity in India and Pakistan
Inter-Ethnic Marriage in the Arab-Iraeli Conflict
Afro-Latino Identity
Hapa Identity in Pacific Rim History
Race and the Australian Aborigines
Race and Native American Identity

For further details contact:

Hettie V. Williams
Lecturer – Department of History and Anthropology
Monmouth University
Visit the website at

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The Transnational Viewing Experience

One-day symposium ‘The Transnational Viewing Experience’ at the University of Reading, Department of Film, Theatre and Television, on Friday, 7 September 2007.
The symposium is a one-day event that will give researchers the opportunity to debate how foreign television dramas have been incorporated into different national contexts and how viewers make sense of foreign product.

Further information (including the registration form and, in the near future, abstracts of the papers) can be found at:

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CFP: ”Celebrity Colonialism”

“Celebrity Colonialism: Fame, Representation, and Power in Colonial and Post-Colonial Cultures”
Call for Submissions to an Edited Collection of Academic Papers

Colonialism and postcolonialism produce their fair share of celebrities, yet the meanings, forms, and functions of celebrities within colonial and post-colonial cultures have received little scholarly attention.

Invitations are extended to scholars who wish to contribute to a collection of papers that explores the various and ambivalent relationships between the cultures of celebrity and (post)colonialism. In particular papers are sought that examine

* Celebrities and the Colonial Moment: how have radio, art, film, literary, exploration, and other celebrities of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries been implicated in colonial and anti-colonial processes?

* Celebrities and the Contemporary Politics of Benevolence: from Hollywood celebrities adopting children from developing nations, to music superstars advocating global economic reforms, how do celebrities influence contemporary public understanding of the line between benevolence and exploitation? How is celebrity questioned, critiqued, and resisted in alternative media?

* Celebrities and Subalternity: from UK’s Celebrity Big Brother to Bollywood and Indigenous Australian cinema actors, how do celebrities complicate the politics of race and class, and how do indigenous celebrities function as cultural intermediaries for the negotiation of contemporary political and economic inequalities? Are there such things as ‘subaltern celebrities,’ and if so, how do they function within post-colonizing cultures to shape cultural memory and intervene in process such as the ‘Reconciliation’ movements of the 1990s?

In May 2006 journalist Brendan O’Neill coined the term ‘celebrity colonialism’ while reporting on the drama attending the Namibian birth of the child of Hollywood celebrities Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt. The term was meant to describe the power celebrities possess to influence public and private institutions within colonial and post-colonial cultures. Colonial cultures have always produced celebrities, yet there has been little examination of them through the prism of their celebrity.

In April this year the University of Queensland Postcolonial Research Group hosted a two-day symposium to explore the various and ambivalent relationships between the cultures of celebrity and colonialism. The present project will showcase a number of the papers from that conference while seeking contributions from other scholars working in this field.

The collection will seek to answer the questions: How do celebrities function within colonial and post-colonial cultures? In what way have various famous figures made their name through their celebration of or antagonism towards colonial and neo-colonial imperialism? How does the popular appeal of celebrity inflect the way (post-) colonial matters can be brought before and received by the public?

Interested contributors should email a 250 word proposal to Dr Robert Clarke (, along with a biographical note, by no later than Friday 27 July 2007. Final submission of papers would be required by no later than Friday 27 June 2008.

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3rd Global Conference: Pluralism, Inclusion and Citizenship

3rd Global Conference
Pluralism, Inclusion and Citizenship Friday 16th November – Sunday 18th November 2007
Salzburg, Austria

Call for Papers

With this inter- and multi-disciplinary project we seek to explore the new developments and changes of the idea of pluralism and the implications those have for social and political processes of inclusion and citizenship in contemporary societies. The project will also assess the larger context of major world transformations, for example, new forms of migration and the massive movements of people across the globe, as well as the impact and contribution of globalisation on tensions, conflicts and the sense of acceptance, rootedness and membership. Looking to encourage innovative trans-disciplinary dialogues, we warmly welcome papers from all disciplines, professions and vocations which struggle to understand what it means for people, the world over, to be a citizen in rapidly changing national, social and political contexts.

In particular papers, workshops and presentations are invited on any of the following themes: Continue reading

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Exiled Lit Cafe: State of Emergency

Monday 6th August 2007 at 7.30 pm

Poetry Cafe, 22 Betterton Street, London WC2 (nearest tube: Covent Garden)

Soleïman Adel Guémar whose poetry book State of Emergency has just been published by Arc. Rooted in Algerian experience, it speaks of urgent concerns everywhere – oppression, resistance, state violence, traumas and private dreams. Soleiman Adel Guemar was born and raised in Algiers where he worked as a journalist. He also published numerous stories and won two national poetry prizes. In 2002 he left Algeria to seek safety for himself and his family in the UK.
Jean-Louis N’tadi Playwright Jean-Louis N’tadi was born in 1964 in Congo-Brazzaville. A political activist with the main opposition party and a Red Cross humanitarian worker, he was dubiously charged by the government with “trafficking information” and defamation. His works include the Le Chef de l’Etat, a parable highly critical of the presidency of Sassou-Nguesso, Vendu, Verve d’une Creature and Monsieur le Maire and L’Acte de Naissance, two volumes written during his detention at Campsfield. He also writes poetry.
Cristina Viti is a poet and translator. Published work includes translations of Dino Campana and Elsa Morante.
Janet Simon comes from the East End of London and was educated at York and Oxford Universities. She lived in Paris throughout the 1970s and became fluent in French. Returning to London she worked with deaf, homeless and older people and with asylum seekers. Janet was a prizewinner in the 1991 National Poetry competition. In 1995 she published a collection of poems called “Victoria Park” (Loxwood-Stoneleigh), and in 2006 her pamphlet Asylum was produced by Hearing Eye.
Tom Cheesman will be reading Adel’s work in English. He lectures in German at Swansea University, and recently finished a book on contemporary German Turkish novelists, which will appear in November 2007. He set up and runs Hafan Books, a not-for-profit publisher, which has produced five anthologies since 2003, all featuring writing by refugees and asylum seekers dispersed to Wales, and other writers in Wales who donate their poems, stories and other pieces. The project raises public awareness of refugee issues and raises funds for the local asylum seekers support group. See
EWI Members – £2, others £4

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Filed under arts, community, event, literature

Intersections Summer Call for Papers: Migration and Environmental Change

For two whole months, until 10 September, we invite submissions to Intersections on the topic of Migration and Environmental Change. Inspired by his efforts, we have invited François Gemenne of the Centre for Ethnic and Migration Studies (CEDEM, of the University of Liège and the Centre for International Studies and Research (CERI, at Sciences Po Paris, to contribute to this Summer Special CFP:

As natural disasters and climate change frequently make headlines in the media, their consequences on human settlements raise increasing concerns from policy-makers and scholars alike. In particular, the possible population movements that would be triggered by climate change have attracted widespread attention, some predicting that up to 200 million people could be displaced by 2050.

Despite these concerns, the intricate and complex linkages between environment and migration remain poorly understood and under-researched. The academic debate revolves around those contending that large refugee flows will be triggered by environmental change in a near future, and those who question the direct causality between environmental change and forced migration, insisting on the multiple, intertwined factors leading to migration. While the term ‘environmental refugees’ is gaining currency, the need to better understand the nexus environment-migration has never been more pressing, especially from an empirical point of view. How do environmental factors interact with other factors in the migration decision? How are these migrants dealt with by states and governments? What kind of assistance do they need? Will an increase in environmental changes lead to an increase of forced migrants? What kind of environmental changes trigger migration?

As usual, we welcome all kinds of audio, visual and written production, as well as commentary and debate, to be sent to

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