CALL FOR PAPERS: “Identity, Memory, and Diasporas”

The 6th Annual Islamic Studies Graduate Student Conference
University of California, Santa Barbara
May 20-22, 2016

Keynote Speaker: Sherman A. Jackson, University of Southern California

The external and internal frontiers and definition of Islam are constantly being contested and negotiated, particularly through the movements of diaspora communities. When individuals and groups move from one place to another, how do identity and memory affect their understanding of origin and destination? What kind of communal practices do they retain, acquire or exchange, and what factors influence these decisions? To what extent do they maintain ties to their previous Islamic communities, and what does this suggest about the process of identity formation and preservation within diaspora groups?

This conference hopes to interrogate the relationships inherent to identity formation, diaspora, and migration of Muslim communities, understood both in terms of geographies and abstract communal concepts. The theme aims to explore the diverse manifestations of identity, pluralities of religious content, patterns of diaspora, and ways in which memory ispreserved in private and public practice.

We invite a diverse array of proposals from graduate students of all academic disciplines at U.S. and international colleges and universities. Proposals that employ interdisciplinary methodologies are encouraged.

Possible topics include but are not limited to:

  • Communal practices, rituals, and aesthetic expressions of belonging within diaspora groups
  • The effects of diaspora on textual translation, interpretation, and communication
  • Memory formation and cultural appropriation within diaspora communities, including shared narratives, nostalgia, and adaptation
  • Constructions and transformations of spaces and built environments (real and imagined) by diaspora groups
  • Implications of residency, social status, and labor for the identity of diaspora populations
  • Inter-community connectivity, including through foodways
  • The politics of Muslim diasporas

 

Submission Guidelines 

This conference is open to all scholars of Islam, pre-modern and modern, whose research connects to the conference theme.

To apply, please submit your name, email, university, and department affiliation with your abstract of 250-300 words, and a two-page CV by January 15th, 2016.

Ph.D. students in advanced stages of research and dissertation writing are especially encouraged to apply. Speakers will have 20 minutes to present their papers.

Email abstracts to isgsc@cmes.ucsb.edu

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