Research

Annual Conference

CFP: CONTACTS, COLLISIONS, CONJUNCTIONS (9-10 May 2018, The University of Hong Kong)

The Society of Fellows in the Humanities at HKU invites scholars working in all fields of the humanities to an international and interdisciplinary conference exploring contacts, collisions and conjunctions. Situated in Hong Kong, the Society of Fellows is located at a place of various contacts, collisions and conjunctions throughout history: it has been a centre for communication and commerce, colonized and incorporated into the Chinese, British and Japanese empires, and known for its ethnic and socio-cultural diversity. Migration, labour and capital, as well as cultural production, made Hong Kong a vibrant and cosmopolitan metropolis with multiple temporalities materializing in the coexistence of colonial legacies and late capitalist forms of trade, consumption and exploitation.

Globally, thinking in terms of contacts, collisions and conjunctions allows us to open interdisciplinary avenues into the production of knowledge and human experience. Contacts, collisions and conjunctions create and are created by tastes, sounds, gestures, emotions, desires and texts. They oscillate between human practice, experience and discursive patterns of knowledge. They allow and urge us to conceptualize and establish, but also criticize and overcome borders and boundaries—politically, socially, culturally, and disciplinarily.

This conference is interested in exploring contacts, collisions and conjunctions across the humanities. As organizers coming from Area Studies, Cultural Studies, History, Literary Studies, and Musicology, we are interested in multi-facetted ways of approaching the harmonious and disharmonious relationships of contacts, collisions and conjunctions. Does contact lead to productive conjunctions? How does contact lead to violent collisions? Can the violence of those collisions itself be creative? Do contacts and collisions always lead to change? And do contacts and collision only alter one party, or do they inevitably imply mutual transformation?

Proposals may address, but need not be limited to:  

·         Interdisciplinarity and intersectionality in the humanities

·         Transnationality, transculturality and transhistoricity

·         Multilingualism, diglossia and translation

·         Affective and sensory experiences: ways of knowing and feeling

·         Borders and boundaries: encounters, contact zones and asymmetries of power

·         Govermentality: regulating contact and illicit encounters

·         Difference and similarity: unexpected connections

·         Migration and diaspora: circulation and non-circulation of people, knowledge, cultural and material goods

·         Relations between mainstream and counterculture, elite and popular culture

·        Social movements and activist organizations: subversion and resistance

·        Modernity, hybridity and syncretism

·        Networks of media, art forms, styles and genres

·        Conflict and resolution: war, negotiation and peace-making

·        Webs, clusters and rhizomes

Selected speakers may be invited to submit extended versions of their papers for publication.

The official language of the conference is English.

Please submit an abstract of 250-300 words and a short biographical statement to sof.hku@gmail.com before 15 January 2018.

Acceptance letters will be sent out in early February 2018. For enquiries please contact the Society of Fellows in the Humanities at sof.hku@gmail.com

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