This coming year, 2018 will be an opportunity to mark the fiftieth anniversary of 1968. On the thirtieth anniversary, Immanuel Wallerstein sought to coordinate the disparate events of that year into an identifiable “single revolution.” On the fortieth anniversary, others, like Michael Watts, characterized the year 1968 as “a global insurrection.” For scholars in the social sciences and humanities this coming year will be an opportunity to look back and, for some, relate to the past as a way of thinking forward. Recent calls for papers suggests that it ought to be a busy year for those of us who are writing and thinking about the present, post-1968.
Organizers at University of York recently circulated their call for papers for a two-day interdisciplinary conference, “Fifty Years of Revolution: Gender, Race and Resistance 1968-2018.” (I cut-and-paste the call below.) Earlier this month, organizers at Middlebury College circulated their call for “1968, Fifty Years of Struggles,” another interdisciplinary conference set to take place in March (the deadline for abstracts has passed). Here at University of Wyoming, I am working with colleagues in History, Spanish, and International Studies to organize our “Fifty Years of ’68” as a launch event for our Latin American Studies Working Group (more on that as the project develops).
Fifty Years of Revolution: Gender, Race and Resistance 1968-2018
A two-day interdisciplinary conference, University of York
Monday 21 and Tuesday 22 May 2018
2018 marks the fiftieth anniversary of 1968, a year that has gone down in history, certainly in the Western context, as synonymous with revolution and protest. It also marks seven years since the Arab uprisings which revealed an image of Arabs, contrary to Orientalist stereotypes, as progressive, politically informed and independently minded. Amid these contexts, the Centre for Women’s Studies, the Department of English and Related Literature and the Centre for Modern Studies at the University of York are holding a two-day interdisciplinary conference on revolution and the revolutionary in politics and culture from 1968 to the present from an explicitly gendered perspective. Gender is constitutive of how we think about revolution, revolutionary subjectivity and the revolutionary, and the fifty years since 1968 have seen the appearance of radically new gendered forms of revolutionary subjectivity, politics and aesthetic practices.
Questions the conference seeks to address include (but are not limited to):
- How has gender, as it intersects with categories such as race, ethnicity, class and (dis)ability, shaped what counts as revolution and the revolutionary over this fifty-year period?;
- How are constructions and embodied experiences of revolutionary agency and subjectivity gendered?;
- What historical (dis)continuities exist in forms of cultural production around revolution and the revolutionary since 1968?;
- What is the significance of revolutionary textual/aesthetic practices and acts of what Marwan Kraidy has termed ‘creative insurgency’ (2016) in wider revolutionary projects?
The conference does not hope to be exhaustive in covering this fifty-year period; rather we seek to employ a case-studies approach, taking in different historical moments and geographical contexts with the aim of critically rethinking how we theorise revolution and revolutionary practices from a gendered perspective.
We invite proposals for papers from diverse (inter)disciplinary contexts, including: Gender/Women’s Studies, English Literature, Modern Language Studies, Postcolonial Studies, History of Art, History, Political Science, International Relations, Drama/Theatre Studies, Philosophy.
Please email abstracts (of around 250 words) along with a short bio to Clare Bielby and Claire Chambers at: firstname.lastname@example.org by 28th February 2018.