Call for Papers: Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies Graduate Student Conference (New York, 27-28 February 2014)

Call For Papers: MESAAS Graduate Conference 2014

27-28 February 2014 
Department of Middle Eastern, South Asian and African Studies
Columbia University in the City of New York

Abstract Deadline: 1 December 2013

The organizing committee of the 2014 MESAAS Graduate Student Conference at Columbia University is pleased to invite paper and panel submissions addressing themes that broadly relate to the MESAAS regions, including but not limited to the following:

  • Literatures and aesthetics (Classical, early modern, and contemporary genres of imaginative literature; the visual and performing arts; cinema studies)
  • Knowledge systems, classical and contemporary (in law, ethics, science, language, and other fields; the history of Oriental Studies; the university)
  • Genealogies of the political (discursive and institutional histories of contemporary political practices)
  • Histories, disciplinary and subaltern (comparative studies of academic or professional modes of history writing and the vernacular or popular forms of retelling the past)

MESAAS is heir and host to a number of intellectual traditions that resist division between the humanities and social sciences. We are interested in examining both classical and emergent questions in area studies, not as objects of research but as sources of generative knowledge, and as such, aim to formulate new and post-disciplinary modes of inquiry beyond the prevalent conditions of both scientism and historicism. As such, we are equally interested in the limits of disciplinary knowledge production, hegemonic epistemes and paradigms of thought, the work that goes into the construction of ‘areas’ of study, as well as the past and future of area studies.

To that end, we especially encourage work that rethinks the boundaries and conditions of the disciplines with reference to regionally specific work, particularly as that relates to critical geographical imaginaries from and within the regions represented in the department.

Students interested in presenting a 20-minute paper should submit a 300-500 word abstract and one-page resume through the conference website:  by 1 December 2013. Notifications will be sent in late December. Panel submissions are encouraged.  For other inquiries,  please contact us via:

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