Document Icon

Inheriting Histories, Imagining Futures: The Promises and Perils of Movement
11th Annual York Sociology Graduate Student Conference
York University, Toronto, ON, Canada
March 11-12, 2010

The York Sociology Graduate Student Association invites you to participate in our 11th annual conference exploring the different conceptual, theoretical, and methodological understandings and practices of movement and movements. The notion of movement (of political imaginaries, perpetual conceptual movement, being emotionally moved, and the movement of bodies) is of particular importance today. There is an epidemic of wall-building, yet an erosion of the nation-state along with renewed discussions of the role of state power. There are questions about remaining attached to political commitments while giving those commitments a partial, contingent character amidst economic crises and a faltering faith in global capitalism. There is talk of love, affect, and utopia, and at the same time, reconciliations of loss, failure, mourning, and suffering.

All of this, and more, speaks to how we envision ideas about refiguring the past and remembering differently, and how we move together, what we move toward, how we view the movement of the body, how we move against systems of power, our capacities to be emotionally and physically moved, movement through a collective/group process, movement through and against state policies and procedures, movements across borders and through check-points, moving over and under walls, moving through the past, discovering how traces of the past move through us, our scholarship and our activism, and how we move away from past conceptions of revolution, social change, and nationalism, or toward them. Under conditions of so much movement, then, how do we study, imagine and articulate identity, home, rights, community, commitment, and political efficacy?

Taking this line of inquiry, a number of additional questions are raised: What socio-legal issues do bodies in motion provoke in interrogating systems of trafficking, policing, nation-building, and the formations of immigration and emigration policies? How are we to make sense of movements in consumption patterns, the diffusion of ideologies and technologies, and the transport of goods and capital in a world of global pandemic, environmental degradation, and economic downfall? How does the displacement of labour and persons affect familial relations? How have intellectual and social movements responded to and made sense of these pressures and tensions? How can methodological enquiries shift to accommodate the changing terrain of the sociological subject?

The York Sociology Graduate Student Conference is an interdisciplinary conference on social theory, methods, and empirical research that provides a space and opportunity for graduate students and faculty from a wide range of disciplines to discuss and present their work and research. We welcome proposals for papers on these and other interpretations of movement. The following is a non-exhaustive list of possible fields/topics:

  • Citizenship studies
  • Studies of visuality – representations and constructions of history, revolt,
  • Sovereignty
  • Migration, diaspora, and refugee studies
  • Art and political aesthetics
  • Postcolonial studies
  • Nationalism and theories of the nation-state
  • Social movements/studies of resistance
  • Utopian studies, impulses, longings, pictorials
  • Historical sociology and memory
  • Studies in disability and the body
  • Immigration studies
  • Religious traditions, temporality, and the sacred in political imaginaries
  • Science fiction studies
  • Transnational feminism
  • Queer theory and sexuality studies
  • Love
  • Documentary and the essay film
  • Borders, security studies, walls, and practices of territorialization
  • Trafficking
  • Theories of loss, mourning, and failure
  • Studies in democracy and political processes

Submissions should include:

  1. Title and abstract (no more than 200 words)
  2. Format of presentation
  3. Requests for audiovisual equipment

Please send submissions to by December 20, 2009.

CFP – Inheriting Histories, Imagining Futures: The Promises and Perils of Movement