HomeThe Fourth Conference in Balkan Studies

HomeThe Fourth Conference in Balkan Studies

The Fourth Conference in Balkan Studies

Quatrièmes rencontres d’études balkaniques

Connected Balkans

Balkans connectés

*  *  *

Published on Wednesday, November 10, 2021 by Lucie Choupaut

Summary

The Fourth Conference in Balkan Studies, organized by the French Association of Balkan Studies (AFEBalk), will be held at the MuCEM in Marseille between June 30 and July 2, 2022. This conference aims to pursue the work carried out during previous meetings and to bring together the driving forces of research on the Balkans around a transversal theme. This year, the theme “connected Balkans” will allow a general conference in area studies open to all relevant disciplines of the Humanities and Social Sciences. It encourages critical reflection on regional approaches and on the organization of knowledge, by engaging both with comparative and multi-scaled analysis.

Announcement

Argument

The Fourth Conference in Balkan Studies, organized by the French Association of Balkan Studies (AFEBalk), will be held at the MuCEM in Marseille between June 30 and July 2, 2022. This conference aims to pursue the work carried out during previous meetings and to bring together the driving forces of research on the Balkans around a transversal theme. This year, the theme “connected Balkans” will allow a general conference in area studies open to all relevant disciplines of the Humanities and Social Sciences. It encourages critical reflection on regional approaches and on the organization of knowledge, by engaging both with comparative and multi-scaled analysis. This perspective is at the heart of the objectives set by the association since its revival in the 2010s: revealing social processes rooted in the Balkan countries, while demonstrating that they can also represent broader dynamics. This approach aims both to withdraw societies from stigmatizing particularities such as their political and social instability as well as to decompartmentalize Balkan studies. This can be achieved by examining regional processes in dialogue with observations made on other regions, both near and far, whether in the current period or in the early modern and modern periods. The Fourth Conference in Balkan Studies aligns with scholarship that has showed how the Balkans have been the subject of a long-term representational construction that established the region as a singular regional area to study. It therefore highlights circulations - of people, ideas, and goods - that either cross these countries or link them to the world. This theme hence encourages participants to reflect on the legitimacy of such a field of study, and to think of the Balkans not in terms of its own specificities, but as a particular place of expression of more vast processes. New logics for understanding the territories and societies of the Balkans - and also of Europe and the Mediterranean – appear when the light is shed on entanglements, but also on networks configurations and circulations that generate a whole set of routes, synapses, and borders.

This approach proposes to counter the most widespread image of Balkan spaces entailing them as sheltering a multitude of anchoring societies, a marquetry of “small homelands” and small territories occupied by well-circumscribed, closed and endogamous groups. This image of isolation, fixity and timelessness tends to obscure long-distance relations that have nourished important processes at least since the time when several imperial powers, mainly the Habsburgs and the Ottomans, shared sovereignty over the region. Even during periods more often associated with closure or immobility, such as the Cold War, there was no end to the movement and/or opening of new roads. The contemporary situation of accelerated communication and transport has contributed to make such processes more visible and to transform the way we look at the functioning of Southeast European societies. The improvement of transport networks, as well as the introduction and use of new information and communication technologies, have been real revolutions, making more visible the ambivalence of the relationship to distance. As many authors have shown, technical and technological progress seems to have increased the role of connections, of capacities to be in relation with one another, allowing the creation of topological proximities between places and/or people who are nevertheless situated at a distance from each other. This is why studies concerning the territories of topographic neighborhoods are now often complemented by works that deal more exclusively with social groups with reticular or even archipelagic dispositions (migrants, transnational actors, trading networks, diasporas). Political, social, linguistic and territorial processes in the age of globalization also offer opportunities to show how influential are the links uniting territories and people across distance, which the recent Covid-19 pandemic has shown to be both fragile and extremely widespread. 

These different observations bring us back to the ideas of Jean Gottman - transposed to the Balkans by the geographer Georges Prévélakis - who saw two fundamental tensions presiding over the dynamics of societies. First, that of iconographies, anchored in the long time of localized identities and leading to the dynamics of compartmentalization, and secondly, that of circulations, which would favor standardization and convergence through the movement of people, ideas and goods. Do these connections generate conflicts and oppositions? Do they produce new forms of domination mobilizing actors inside and outside of Balkan societies? From a practical point of view, what are or have been the consequences of these reticular and circulatory processes on the societies of the countries concerned? How can they be identified and understood? What are the elements that remain or have remained outside of these network logics? Would the emphasis on connections allow us to consider centralities in a new way, but also to understand peripheries differently (what remains disconnected, hindered, isolated, or uncirculated)? Would circulation and other communication networks allow us to think differently about relationships and exchanges (whether East/West or North/South)? Are they such irresistible factors of homogenization of social practices and representations? From a methodological point of view, the conference examines how connections and circulations shed light on the notions of transfer (cultural and/or political) as well as of passage and linkage (transnationalism and/or translocalism), which occupy an important place in the Humanities and Social Sciences, and which question, beyond localizations, the inclusion of territories in nation-states, regions, empires.

This meeting aims to demonstrate how the observation of Southeast European societies can feed research on these fundamental questions. Paper proposals contributing to this discussion may be submitted on the following themes, and we strongly encourage approaches that multiply the spatial and temporal scales of observation, as well as those that combine several prisms of analysis, using intersectional approaches.

Topic Proposals

The Balkans in the global world: the area studies in question: 

  • Connecting and comparing the “Balkans”, “Southeast Europe”, and “Eastern Europe”
  • Neighborhoods revisited: coexistence and pluralism
  • Political and cultural transfers and regional integration 

Connections through the lens of intersectionality:

  • Class and social (re)stratification
  • Gender and sexuality
  • Religion and spirituality 
  • Nation, ethnicity, race 
  • Age and generation

Migrations, mobility, movements:

  • Bodies, routes, supports: the materiality of circulations 
  • Migratory flows and diasporas
  • Crises, conflicts and contestations
  • Populations and demographic dynamics

Cities and recomposed ecologies:

  • Urban and rural life in the Balkans 
  • Places and environments, atmospheres and environment 
  • Humans and non-humans

Aesthetics, arts and forms of cultural expression:

  • Institutions and cultural manifestations 
  • Circulations and social practices of the arts
  • Research-creation, sciences and arts
  • Networks, borders and virtual circulations 
  • Memories, legacy and connected heritage 

Communications, networks, circulation of practices and models:

  • Economies, businesses and exchanges
  • Infrastructures and transport 
  • Care practices and health

Submission guidelines

Abstracts should be submitted via the dedicated page on this website. Please note that creating a sciencesconf account is mandatory for proposal submission.

Languages of the conference:

  • English
  • French

Individual abstracts: 300 words + 5 line-bio including affiliation + 5 key words

Panel abstracts: Proposals for panels will be welcome as well as interventions crossing the research of a specialist of the Balkan area with that of a researcher working in/on other regions of the world.

500 words + 5 line-bio including affiliation + 5 key words

Schedule

Closing date for submission: January 7, 2022

Answers: February 18 , 2022

Miscellaneous information

Unfortunately, we cannot take charge of any transport or accommodation fees for the participants. Some demands can however be addressed to the organization committee, which will decide according to the budget. 

There is no participation fee required to attend the conference.

Scientific committee

  • Avdela Efi, Université de Crète
  • Baric Daniel, Paris-Sorbonne
  • Baby-Collin Virginie, TELEMMe, AMU, CNRS
  • Baussant Michèle, CEFRES CNRS
  • Bernardot Marc, MESOPOLHIS, CNRS, Aix-Marseille Univ, Sciences Po Aix
  • Bougarel Xavier, CNRS, CETOBaC
  • Boulineau Emmanuelle, EVS, ENS de Lyon
  • Carbonell Mauve, TELEMMe, AMU CNRS
  • Capelle-Pogacean Antonella, Science Po Paris
  • Čapo-Žmegač Jasna, Institut d’ethnologie et de folklore de Zagreb
  • Clayer Nathalie, CNRS, EHESS, CETOBaC
  • Daumalin Xavier, TELEMMe, AMU, CNRS
  • De Gourcy Constance, MESOPOLHIS, CNRS, Aix-Marseille Univ, Sciences Po Aix
  • De Rapper Gilles, École française d’Athènes
  • Dimitrijevic Dejan, LADEC, Université Lumière Lyon 2
  • Hamon Pascal, Salon du livre des Balkans
  • Fliche Benoit, CNRS, IDEMEC, AMU, CNRS
  • Jouhanneau Cécile, ART-Dev, Université de Montpellier
  • Kotzamanis Byron, Université de Thessalie
  • Lory Bernard, INALCO
  • Marin Brigitte, École française de Rome
  • Mesini Béatrice, TELEMMe, AMU, CNRS
  • Prevelakis Georges, Université Panthéon Sorbonne
  • Ragaru Nadège, CERI, Science Po Paris
  • Rupnik Jacques, CERI, Sciences Po
  • Samary Catherine, Université Paris Dauphine
  • Spaskovska Ljubica, Université d’Exeter
  • Stiks Igor, Faculté de medias et communications, Belgrade / Faculté de philosophie, Université de Ljubljana
  • Tchavdar  Marinov, Institute of Philosophy and Sociology, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences
  • Tsibiridou Fotini, Université de Macédoine
  • Tchoukarine Igor, Université du Minnesota
  • Valtchinova Galia, Université Toulouse le Mirail
  • Vrinat-Nikolov Marie, INALCO

Subjects

Places

  • Mucem, 1 esplanade du J4
    Marseille, France (13)

Event format

Full on-site event


Date(s)

  • Friday, January 07, 2022

Keywords

  • Balkans, connexion, migration, réseau

Contact(s)

  • Info Afebalk
    courriel : afebalkinfo [at] gmail [dot] com

Information source

  • Petros Diatsentos
    courriel : petros [dot] diatsentos [at] univ-amu [dot] fr

To cite this announcement

« The Fourth Conference in Balkan Studies », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Wednesday, November 10, 2021, https://calenda.org/930154

Archive this announcement

  • Google Agenda
  • iCal
Search OpenEdition Search

You will be redirected to OpenEdition Search