3rd IASA International Symposium in Italy
Call for Papers
May 28-31, 2020
Via del Seminario Prima, 790
Italian Diaspora(s): The Manifestations and Dynamics of Cultural Change
Submission Deadline: Saturday, February 1, 2020
Submit a proposal
The Italian American Studies Association (IASA) invites proposals for participation in its 3rd International Symposium in Italy. Proposals on all topics relevant to Italian American studies and Italian Diaspora Studies will be considered. Membership is not required to apply, but is required to present at the symposium.
The dispersion of communities of people physically displaced from their perceived ‘homeland’ has been a defining feature of the human experience. Commonly referred to as Diasporas, these groups have travelled to other lands for reasons including to escape persecution, seek a better life, and exploit economic opportunities. Some have defined Diaspora in terms of what it is not – not from “here,” not “at home,” not “rooted.” This approach is consistent with the way modern–that is, privileged–subjectivity is primed to understand identity in terms of how it differs from an ‘Other.’ Theorization on cultural exchange has moved from Marie Louise Pratt’s “contact zone” (1992), mainly understood spatially, to Homi Bhabha’s “third space” (1994) where the meeting between two cultures takes place. More recently, Doreen Massey (2005) conceives spaces as the site of a continuously developing intersection of different trajectories, human and non-human, which is “open, multiple and relational, unfinished and always becoming.”
This symposium aims to consider how members of displaced groups relate to identity markers such as race, ethnicity, nationality, language, religion, and other socio-cultural categories, having regard to the impact of globalization, connectivity, and mobility. If the language of difference, binary categories of here/there, and other features of customary understandings of diaspora are no longer appropriate, then scholars need new approaches for conceptualizing, theorizing, representing, and interacting with Diasporas.
The Symposium Committee welcomes proposals from scholars from any discipline, inter-discipline, or scholarly field, including creative artists (filmmakers, artists, writers), from both within and outside of the university. We will consider proposals that compliment this year’s theme. We prefer fully formed sessions, although we also encourage perspective participants to submit individual presentations. The preferred language of the symposium is English; however, presentations may be in English or Italian.
Proposals should include a 250-word abstract for each paper and 75-word bio for each participant, including chairs and respondents, as well as for all participants in a proposed panel. Each participant’s name, affiliation, email, and preferred address should be listed. Please indicate if the presenter/panel requires AV equipment (each room has a computer, a projector, and speakers). The Symposium Committee will send an email notification of acceptance for individual abstracts or proposed panels through Submittable by Saturday, February 15, 2020.
Guidelines for proposals:
All sessions will be 75 minutes, and we will ask presenters to limit their remarks to 15-20 minutes each so that there is ample time for Q&A and discussion. Proposals may take one of three forms.
- Individual presentation, paper, or talk
- Complete panel session, round table, or workshop, featuring multiple presenters (we particularly encourage thematic groupings of presenters from diverse disciplinary fields or methodological approaches, see above for more information)
- Performance, reading, or screening of creative work
Topics include, but are not limited to:
- Connectivity and Technology: impact of television, radio, smart phones, the internet, social media, and other modes of connection on the Italian / Italian-American diasporans
- Economics: Employment and financial security for diasporic communities
- Education and Pedagogy: how diaspora and education mutually inform each other; experiences of diasporans (emigrants in movement) in the classroom; how diaspora is taught or not being taught
- Generational Issues: intergenerational challenges faced by aging diasporas; differences in diasporic experiences among (grand)parents and children; how age and generational differences impact the ways in which the diaspora self-identifies and represents itself to others
- Home: ideas of what constitutes home and belonging or being at home; “homing”; relationships between diaspora communities and so-called homelands
- Identity and Representation of Diaspora: including through memory and witnessing; literature; music; performance; film, television, and other visual media
- Impact of Intersectionalities: entanglements/tensions relating to language, race and ethnicity, nationality, culture and other diasporic diversities on relations within and between diaspora communities–and how those relationships are discussed
- Legacies: Influence of diaspora on evolution of languages, genetic traits, geographical boundaries, etc.
- Policy and Law: non-governmental organizations, charities and government agencies that provide assistance to diasporans; political agency and activism of diasporans; impact of diaspora on foreign policy; approaches to recognizing and protecting rights of diasporans
- Post-colonialism and Decolonization: how discourses around diaspora shifts vis-a-vis evolving politics of post-colonialism and decolonization, particularly in relation to the ways in which “here” and “there” have traditionally been constructed within colonial language
- Power and Voice: liminality and in-betweenness, marginalization, (in)visibility, and relations of and to power as it pertains to diasporan fluidity
- Sex, Gender, and Sexuality: how differences in sex, gender, and orientation produce differing perspectives on what constitutes diasporic identity