AccueilResistance and Empire, new approaches and comparisons

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Publié le lundi 23 novembre 2015 par Elsa Zotian

Résumé

Since the early twentieth century, the notion of resistance became common currency in colonial language and anti-colonial ideologies to refer to military, political, and other forms of countering the authority of the colonizing institutions and agents in the colonies. After World War II and the boom of decolonization, it became an important tool in the critical and conceptual analysis of colonialism as a relationship of domination and opposition. Consequently, a wealth of studies was produced that focused on the ways though which indigenous people actively opposed, rebelled, or contested – militarily, politically, symbolically, culturally – the colonizing presence of Europeans. In the 1990s-2000s the validity of taking on “resistance” as a privileged concept and empirical topic was criticized for reducing the colonial phenomenon to a simplistic dichotomy – and since it appeared to have lost much of its early vitality in historical and anthropological research on empires and colonialism. Yet, since decolonization, ideas of “liberation” and anti-colonial resistance did not lose their significance as powerful tropes in retrospective nationalist readings of the birth of post- colonial nation-states. More recently, across the social sciences, “resistance” as a concept and a research trope seems to be revived, and a trans-disciplinary field of ‘resistance studies’ appears to come into emergence. What it means to study “resistance” both conceptually and comparatively in colonial and imperial history today?

Annonce

Argument

Since the early twentieth century, the notion of resistance became common currency in colonial language and anti-colonial ideologies to refer to military, political, and other forms of countering the authority of the colonizing institutions and agents in the colonies. After World War II and the boom of decolonization, it became an important tool in the critical and conceptual analysis of colonialism as a relationship of domination and opposition. Consequently, a wealth of studies was produced that focused on the ways though which indigenous people actively opposed, rebelled, or contested – militarily, politically, symbolically, culturally – the colonizing presence of Europeans. In the 1990s-2000s the validity of taking on “resistance” as a privileged concept and empirical topic was criticized for reducing the colonial phenomenon to a simplistic dichotomy – and since it appeared to have lost much of its early vitality in historical and anthropological research on empires and colonialism. Yet, since decolonization, ideas of “liberation” and anti-colonial resistance did not lose their significance as powerful tropes in retrospective nationalist readings of the birth of post- colonial nation-states. More recently, across the social sciences, “resistance” as a concept and a research trope seems to be revived, and a trans-disciplinary field of ‘resistance studies’ appears to come into emergence. What it means to study “resistance” both conceptually and comparatively in colonial and imperial history today? How can this notion be valuably re-conceptualized in current imperial and post- colonial studies? What are its potential and limitations? What phenomena should be considered under the notion of “resistance”? What specificities resistance(s) phenomena 
take over time and across spaces? How to address the plural manifestations of resistance comparatively, across different empires, different colonial situations, and different historical periods? 
The conference Resistance and Empire: New Approaches and Comparisons aims at addressing these questions and rediscovering the vitality of resistance both as a concept and as an empirical phenomenon in the study of European empires, colonialisms, and their legacies. As such, it will invite students of French, British, Portuguese, German, and other European colonialisms to analytically address the multiple expressions of “resistance” in colonial history by engaging with empirical material and theoretical explorations.

The conference has two main purposes. On the one hand, it will seek to cross-fertilize the study of anti-colonial resistance(s) as a multiple historical phenomenon across the different geographies and temporalities of the European overseas expansion in Asia, Africa, America, and Oceania since the sixteenth century. On the other hand, it will reassess the potential and limitations of “resistance” as an analytical concept in imperial history, anthropology, and post- colonial studies, relating it to other notions in these domains, such as “order”, “rule”, “protest”, “rebellion”, “subaltern”, “agency”, or “domination”. The conference will adopt a broad conceptual, geographical and chronological framework, encouraging a comparative examination of “resistance” in relation to diverse places and historical periods. We particularly welcome students working on all Western forms of colonialisms and imperial formations, in any historical situation and spatial location, from the sixteenth to the twentieth-first century. We invite paper proposals from senior scholars, early career researchers, and post-graduate students that draw on concrete and specific empirical materials whilst reflecting conceptually and analytically on one, or more than one, of the following topics:

  • Nationalist ideologies and liberation movements
  • Resistances to decolonization
  • Religious movements
  • International and transnational engagements
  • Armed rebellions and revolts
  • Indigenous agency
  • Cultural dimensions of resistance
  • Forms of everyday resistance
  • Archival and methodological aspects of resistance studies

Submission guidelines

The conference will be designed in order to encourage discussion and debate. Prior to the conference, participants are expected to submit a piece of written work, which will be pre-circulated to discussants and among all paper presenters. This piece will consist of a substantial executive summary of the research paper, up to 4,000 words.

So as to stimulate discussion we will invite discussants to comment on individual essays. General discussion will follow the discussants’ commentaries. Keynote address will be delivered by Professor James C. Scott (Yale University). A second keynote speaker will be announced in due time.

Please submit a 250 words abstract and a brief exposition of current research and interests, by email to: resistance&empire@ics.ulisboa.pt

Timeline

  • Deadline for submission of paper proposals (abstracts): 31 December 2015
  • Selection of paper proposals and communication to participants: 31 January 2016 Pre-circulation of summary papers to discussants: 30 May 2016
  • International Conference, Lisbon, 26-29 June 2016

Scientific committee

  • Nuno Domingos, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, University of Lisbon, Institute of Social Sciences (ICS-Ulisboa)
  • Miguel B. Jeronimo, Research Fellow, University of Lisbon, Institute of Social Sciences (ICS-ULisboa)
  • Ricardo Roque, Research Fellow, University of Lisbon, Institute of Social Sciences (ICS-ULisboa)

Lieux

  • ICS, av. Prof. Aníbal de Bettencourt, 9
    Lisbonne, Portugal (1600-189)

Dates

  • jeudi 31 décembre 2015

Mots-clés

  • Empire, résistance, colonisation, anti-colonialisme, nationalisme

Contacts

  • Ricardo Roque
    courriel : resistance&empire [at] ics [dot] ulisboa [dot] pt

URLS de référence

Source de l'information

  • Ricardo Roque
    courriel : resistance&empire [at] ics [dot] ulisboa [dot] pt

Pour citer cette annonce

« Resistance and Empire, new approaches and comparisons », Appel à contribution, Calenda, Publié le lundi 23 novembre 2015, http://calenda.org/347611