Time of Politics, Politics of Time, Politicized Time
Venue: German Historical Institute London
Date: 5-9 May 2020
Closing date: 30 April 2019
Time is so deeply interwoven with all aspects of politics that its fundamental importance is frequently overlooked. Building on the work of Charles Maier and Christopher Clark, we define chronopolitics as research into ‘how politics is about time’ as well as what kind of time is ‘presupposed by politics’ (Clark), how the perception of time and change affect decision-making and how concepts of time and history give meaning and legitimacy to political actors, groups and ideas. However, instead of taking time as a given, we set out to analyse how it is socially and culturally constructed through political and scholarly practices.
On first glance, politics and time coincide as policy makers are constantly making decisions in the present, against the background of a past and in the name of a future. Yet, in order to scrutinize the nexus between time and politics more closely, it is necessary to differentiate.
We are looking for submissions on the following dimensions/aspects of chronopolitics:
(1) The time of politics refers to the arena of the decision-making process and to the changing rhythms and durations within which politics take place. As George W. Wallis argued, the time of politics is a ‘time of transition’ in which political players lay the foundations of tomorrow or forgo doing so. It is subject to formalizations such as terms of offices or legislative sessions; its configuration is radically altered if the present is perceived as crisis, and it is structured by expectations and fears.
(2) The politics of time on the other hand refers to the regulation, synchronisation and allocation of time by politics. The object of this chronopolitical dimension is an allegedly objective, physical ‘clock time’, whose measurement and standardization both on national and global scales have lately been drawing much attention, as have also debates about calendar reforms, daylight saving time or the length of the working day. In the latter cases time figures as a ‘scarce social resource’, as Charles S. Maier notes, usage of which can be contested and distributed.
(3) Politicized time is time employed as a weapon of politics, as a means of legitimising one’s own programme, challenging and discrediting political opponents or opposing political views. Whether advocating change or continuity, politicians refer as much to the past for orientation and legitimation, as they outline futures. Progressive versus conservative – the very categories of political differentiation since the French Revolution are temporal ones. Recently, Brexit and Trump have both been portrayed in terms of a temporal politics, as indicative of ‘being stuck in the past’ or the nostalgic yearning for a Golden Age.
(4) A subset of politicized time poses particularly pressing questions we hope to discuss, i.e. the politics of (de)synchronisation. Civilizing missions, development and modernizing projects – in the colonial periphery as well as at the nation’s margins – were based on a temporalization of the other that Johannes Fabian aptly named the ‘denial of coevalness’. Yet, while temporal exclusion and stratification lay at the heart of ‘modern’ chronopolitics, it also comprised the promise of coevalness. Chronopolitics was about fighting anachronism, making history and accelerating its course.
(5) When it comes to chronopolitics, historians as well as scholars of further ‘historicist’ disciplines such as anthropology neither were nor are mere observers. In fact, these disciplines are among the main producers of ‘the characteristic images of history and temporal order’ (Maier) that both inform chronopolitics and constitute its very object. Thus, we would like to critically reflect these images and – following the lead of Reinhart Koselleck, Achim Landwehr, Ethan Kleinberg and others – discuss alternatives to more or less hegemonic historicist temporality. We invite scholars to explore concepts such as pluritemporality but also to historicise chronopolitics of ‘pre-modern’ periods and to reflect the pre-occupation with modernity and the emergence of modern time regimes. We are particularly interested in case-studies probing into the coexistence and clashes of different temporal imaginaries and postcolonial, feminist or queer temporalities, and in papers explicitly addressing the modern/pre-modern dichotomy.
Organized by Tobias Becker, Christina Brauner and Fernando Esposito for the Arbeitskreis Geschichte + Theorie in conjunction with the German Historical Institute London, the international conference aims at bringing together scholars from across different periods and disciplines (such as history, art history, philosophy, anthropology, ethnology, sociology, economics, literary, cultural, gender and queer studies). We invite proposals for presentations (20 min) that combine an interest in theory with empirical case studies.
Please submit an abstract of no more than 500 words, along with a short CV, by 30 April 2019 to chronopolitics(@)ghil.ac.uk. The conference will take place at the German Historical Institute from 5 to 9 May 2020. Subject to a successful funding bid, costs for travel and accommodation will be covered.
Download Call for Papers (PDF file)
CFP: International Medical Humanities Conference
Chronicity and Crisis: Time in the Medical Humanities
The MSU Medical Humanities Program and ‘Waiting Times’ (a Wellcome Trust funded research project based at the University of Exeter and Birkbeck, University of London, UK) are pleased to announce an international conference on the theme of “Chronicity and Crisis” to be held at Montclair State University, New Jersey, on October 26-27, 2019. The conference organizers welcome submissions of abstracts to be sent to Dr. Jefferson Gatrall by April 1, 2019. (gatrallj (at) montclair.edu).
Dr. Mark Solms. Chair, Neuropsychology, University of Cape Town & Groote Schuur Hospital
Title: “A Man Who Got Lost in Time: Feeling and Uncertainty in the Face of Oblivion”
Dr. Rishi Goyal. Director, Medicine, Literature and Society Program, Columbia University
Title: “Crisis, Catastrophe and Emergency: Disentangling Temporal Patterns of Care and Response”
The conference will bring together scholars from the humanities and social sciences as well as the psychosocial disciplines, health studies, and biomedicine to examine how the concepts of chronicity and crisis inform historical and contemporary understandings of health, illness and wellbeing. “Chronicity and Crisis” aims to open up the relationship between the long term and the urgent in order to address a range of questions in individual, social and global health.
The temporal aligning of care and illness — the potentially long time-frames of care as juxtaposed to the urgency of acute interventions — factors into the success of diverse medical treatments. From the prioritization of wait times in emergency centers to approvals by insurance companies and the monitoring of chronic physical and mental illnesses, care is determined by more than the treatment at hand. Likewise, adverse public health outcomes arise from social inequities and inequalities of long historical duration, including the chronic legacies of colonial violence, the inaccessibility of public spaces for the less abled, the health risks of environmental neglect, or gender imbalances in the subjects of medical research. The narrative markers of onset, frequency, and remission inform how the experiences of sudden and chronic illnesses are communicated, from self-reporting and clinical records to medical fiction, biography, and memoir.
The conference will structure and develop conversations between those with interests in general practice, psychotherapy, disability studies, palliative care, end-of-life care, narrative medicine, public health, medical anthropology, medical history, literature and medicine and body studies, and researchers addressing questions of care and temporality within fields such as philosophy, sociology, psychology, critical and cultural studies, gender studies and Black studies.
Subjects that may be explored include, but are not limited to, the following:
Lisa Baraitser (ubps005 (at) mail.bbk.ac.uk)
Jefferson Gatrall (gartrallj (at) montclair.edu)
Lois Oppenheim (oppenheiml (at) montclair.edu)
Laura Salisbury (l.a.salisbury (at) exeter.ac.uk)
Call for papers for proposed session at RGS-IBG Conference, London, 27-30 August 2019
Ageing, inequalities and urban change
Sophie Yarker, (The University of Manchester), Amy Barron, (The University of Manchester)
Urban Geography Research Group Sponsored Session
Geographers have a longstanding and growing interest in the relations amidst people, place and ageing (Rowles, 1978; Warnes, 1990). Disciplinary scholars have begun to unpick the spatially uneven and place-embedded implications of population ageing and the role of community dynamics in shaping experiences of ageing (Andrews and Phillips, 2004; Ziegler and Schwanen, 2011). There is an increasing appreciation for understanding the lived experiences of ageing and how this mediates and is mediated by the environment (Skinner et al., 2015). The intersection of population ageing, population growth and the processes of urbanisation mean that cities are increasingly the place where people will grow older (Golant, 2014). It is therefore vital the Geographers consider the role of the city in the lives of older people.
Public policy and interdisciplinary researchers have begun to envisage what a more ‘Age-Friendly City’ might look like. However, factors such as population change, gentrification, and austerity mean cities are often challenging - even hostile - environments in which to grow older (Pain, 2001). The contemporary city is a convivial, intergenerational and intersubjective node within the flow of everyday life, yet it is also profoundly unequal. This session, therefore develops geographic approaches to understanding ageing and inequality in cities.
Areas of interest include, but are not limited to;
- Ageing in/and place
- Approaches to researching with older people
- Intergenerational and intersectional approaches to urban ageing
- Urban change and ageing
- The lived experiences of ageing
- Understandings of the relation between policy and ageing
- Approaches to ageing, identity and/or marginalisation
Please send your paper title, abstract (250 words max.), email address and affiliation to Sophie Yarker (Sophie.firstname.lastname@example.org) and Amy Barron (email@example.com) by 13 Feb 2019.
Anticipating Black Futures Symposium
We invite PhD and Early Career Researchers engaging with Black Studies, Black British Studies and related subjects to send an Abstract or Poster submission by: 8 March 2019
Symposium date: Friday, 31st May 2019
Symposium location: Birmingham, UK
Anticipating Black Futures is an interdisciplinary symposium that will consider the futures of Black people in Britain by responding to the lived experiences of now.
In a nation where Black pasts are erased and the present is under threat, how do we begin conceptualising the future? This symposium responds to this curiosity by raising questions about the meanings of Black identities in Britain from this moment of post- Windrush and pre- Brexit. By anticipating the future Black possibilities we can articulate contemporary realities and theorise how to move forward in the present hostile environment.
By legitimising anticipation of the future as a research premise this symposium aims to articulate what it means to be Black in Britain by looking into future possibilities. The symposium will not only benefit those studying Black Studies and its related subjects. It will serve as a platform to further interests across Britain by being open to students in the arts, humanities, social sciences and other disciplines.
We are keen for individual papers and posters with expertise in the following areas, but not limited to:
• Arts, Media and Culture
• Black Feminisms
• Black Masculinities
• Climate and Environment
• Community and Neighbourhoods
• Digital Age and Technology
• Disability, Health and Wellbeing
• Education and Childhood
• Gender, Sex & Sexualities
• Globalisation and Migration
• Politics and Civil Rights
• Racism and Anti-Racism
The submissions will take the form of lightning talks that last 10 minutes or less. We want to encourage dialogue between attendees and presenters to deviate away from the traditional approach to symposiums.
We are also taking submissions for poster presentations. We highly encourage scholars, activists, artists and community workers to submit a poster presentation to share their work-in-progress. Your posters will be displayed throughout the day and you will have ample time during networking breaks to share your work.
For submission requirements: https://blackfuturesuk.wordpress.com/call-for-papers/
Follow us on Twitter: @blackfuturesuk
CfP RGS-IBG 2019 Calamitous 'events'? Exploring perceptions of disaster timeframes
Notions of temporality lie at the heart of the idea of disaster, with lived 'events' underpinned by the existential experience of trauma or abnormality across a defined human population (Perry, 2007; Quarantelli, 1985). Yet what constitutes such a (disaster) event remains deeply problematic, with allegations the event has even been 'dissolved' in analysis (Fassin and Vasquez, 2005). The impact of hazards like storms, tsunamis or even chemical leaks can most clearly be located in a particular time and space, yet none of these automatically results in a disaster or in a shared traumatic memory. Safeguards are frequently put in place to prevent hazards turning into disasters, while distinct cultural developments have sometimes equipped people with the means to familiarise hazards (or even traumas) to the point of avoiding them embedding in memory (Kruger et al., 2015).
Disasters are always interpreted through social experience in specific social time (Oliver-Smith and Hoffman, 2002). Nonetheless, notions of disasters as unexpected, negative, traumatic events are being eroded from multiple sides. Disasters have been discussed variously as ('beautiful') focusing events (Lowry, 2006), as forcing breakthroughs in 'disaster diplomacy' (Kelman, 2012), as potentially changing the social contract (Pelling and Dill, 2010), or as punctuating an equilibrium (Baumgartner and Jones, 1993). Approaches focussed on adaptive management and social-ecological resilience (Renn, 2008) tend to see disaster events as part of cyclical or functional processes involving the disruption and restoration of normative stability, and as such undercut subjective 'meaning' and 'memory' among individuals and communities, just as they demote questions of social and political power.
Conversely (or in parallel), vulnerability analyses go a long way toward explaining the unequal experience of hazard impacts, and thus the kinds of social and spatial conditions that actually produce a disaster. Chronic and ongoing vulnerability can be a disaster in the making, long before the earth shakes - in this sense all disasters are 'slow-onset' (Kelman, 2018). From this perspective the focus on discreet shocks or events, rooted in mysterious 'outside' forces, can side-track us from the development issues that count. From Oliver-Smith's (2012) Peruvian '500-year earthquake' to Wisner et al.'s (2004) build-up of 'pressure', and onwards to the creation of increasingly hazardous and uneven planetary space under capitalist urbanization (Braun, 2014; Brenner, 2013), the idea of what constitutes the event itself is dissipating under the weight of socio-spatial production. 'Eventfulness' can be an abstraction based around late liberal governance or governmentality; the internalised strategy of blaming nature an integral part of what sustains everyday marginality as a 'non-event' (Povinelli, 2011). From geophysical hazards to industrial pollution, questioning the diffusion of knowledge of hazardous environments speaks to the manipulation of social subjectivities and the limitations of perceptions of existential experience (Auyero and Swistun, 2009).
In this panel we seek papers exploring spatial and temporal contexts and limits surrounding disaster events, or as the case may be, disaster non-events. Whether they are primarily theory-based or also engage with a disaster case study, contributions will ideally place theories in productive dialogue.
Robert Coates and Jeroen Warner
Disaster Studies, Sociology of Development and Change, Wageningen University
Please submit abstracts of no more than 250 words to firstname.lastname@example.org by 7th February 2019. Discussion over possible contributions is also welcome.
Starting with the end...
Organised by: Ruth Raynor and Nick Rush-Cooper.
Call for Papers RGS-IBG Annual Conference, 28th August - 30th August 2019, London
Sponsored by HPGRG
Supposedly, we are living in an 'age' of endings: the end of modernity, the end of liberalism, the end of countless species, the end of capitalism or the end of the world? At the same time great scrutiny in the social sciences has been given to the 'impasse:' a slow and on-going crisis. This work points to acts of grasping or holding on, and to the collectively sensed impossibility of endings, even as they begin to unfold. This session seeks work that offers theoretical and/or empirically grounded interventions into the ethics and practices of ending (withdrawal, divestment, foreclosure...) examples might include but are not limited to end of life and end of life care, end of conflict and suffering, species decline, catastrophe and disaster, end of extraction, contingency planning, end of exploitation, loss of intimate relationships. Presentations may also consider disciplinary endings, such as the end of (or claims about the end of) certain ways of thinking, doing, and knowing: the end of the dominance of representational approaches? The end of class? The end of positivism?
The session seeks to engage with and move beyond the rhetoric of ending as threat. It does not assume a direction to the morality of endings: they may both open and foreclose opportunities, they may be both hopeful and troubling, but they will be experienced unevenly and unequally. What does it mean, then, to start with an end? How do endings take place? How are they planned for, or not? What are the temporalities of endings: are they slow, sudden? What labours might be involved in enacting, or accepting an ending? What are the limits to our understanding of the end? And how might those limits become constructive? Who or what names, declares, decides, announces, an end and what are the effects of this? How are endings felt? What lingers and what might be salvaged or reclaimed after the impossibility of returning to business as usual solidifies?
Please send abstracts of no more than 200 words to Ruth.Raynor@newcastle.ac.uk and Nick.Rush-Cooper@newcastle.ac.uk by Wednesday the 30th January.
CALL FOR PAPERS
3rd Peaceful Coexistence Colloquium, 13-14 June 2019, University of Helsinki
AFTER THE ANTHROPOCENE: TIME AND MOBILITY
Sooner or later, the Earth will reach the end of ‘the Anthropocene’. As the effects of changing climatic regimes impose greater effects on earthbound habitation and ways of being in the present geological epoch known, we would like to consider how humans and/or socio-nature might and should respond. Could we, for example, imagine a time after the Anthropocene, when humans would no longer be the dominant species on the planet? And if so, what would this imply to social organisation? Could we consider the notion of the ‘late Anthropocene’ relevant for discussing the present when humanity – albeit in different place-specific ways – is forced to adapt in radical ways to the challenges that it faces?
Scholarly debate to date has paid relatively little attention to this space-time. Instead, the discussion continues to revolve around questions such as when the human-dominated epoch began; what to call it; who or what is to blame for it; and how might we respond to it in the immediate future. While these questions certainly deserve consideration, effort should also be aimed at questions of how the Anthropocene might come to an end (as a discourse and as an epoch); what post-Anthropocene might look like; and what this might signify for organizing social change, and/or caring for the non-human nature?
In this colloquium, we focus on questions of time and mobility, insofar as these concepts enrich our understandings of what comes after the Anthropocene and how to exit the Anthropocene. Organizers seek workshops, artistic interventions, and academic presentations, and innovative sessions that explore time and mobility after the Anthropocene. In relation to time and/or mobility, possible topics are:
Just as the Anthropocene marked a global matter-energetic shift, the end of the human epoch also marks significant changes in the deep geological time of the Earth’s history. Different temporal perspective and rhythms might well play a role in how the time after the Anthropocene will unfold. There is a need to begin to conceive time not only in anthropocentric terms, but more holistically, e.g. in terms of rocks. Thus, instead of merely seeking to save the world for future human generations, consideration and care for other animals, plants, and rocks – constituents of the Earth – open up a different time horizon.
A possibility is that the on-going mass movement of people and other earthbound beings will both be an outcome and reason for the new epoch. Furthermore, the travel of earthbound beings beyond the boundaries of Earth –the exploitation of space, is an issue calling for critical reflection. And the mobility of deep geological formations of the Earth merits consideration as well; the movement of lithospheric plates has historically changed the course of life on the planet in a remarkable way. The trouble of moving, living and dying together in the late Anthropocene necessarily brings about new practical and theoretical questions of power, as the recent formulations of ‘geopower’, for instance, cogently demonstrate.
If you would like to present your work at the colloquium, please send an extended abstract of 800-1000 words by 30 January 2019 to the coordinator Toni Ruuska (email@example.com). Also in case you have any questions about the meeting, please do not hesitate to contact.
RGS IBG 2019: The politics of hope within systems of border control: Troubled subjects, materials and temporalities
The politics of hope within systems of border control: Troubled subjects, materials and temporalities
Organisers: Sarah Hughes (Durham University) & Daniel Fisher (Exeter University)
“Is there a better optimism? And a right way to lose hope? It depends who’s hoping, for what, for whom – and against whom. We must learn to hope with teeth.”
China Miéville 2018, The limits of Utopia
The contemporary landscape of border control is not widely considered to be hopeful. Profit margins and a political rhetoric of ‘secure borders’ are valued more than life lived in fullness. The UK’s hostile environment policies, the measures put in place by ‘Fortress Europe’, ‘Brexit’ and anxieties of settled status, escalating family detention and Trump’s border wall are but a few examples of increasing hostility to migrants. Simply put, things are getting worse.
And yet hope remains. The politics of migration control can also be characterised as a struggle for/over hope. We encounter hopeful actions in those moving to find family, escape war, find work and in aims for a better life. We find them in the activists and charities working to kindle hope within these systems. Yet we also see hope in the policy strategies to deter ‘hopeful’ migrants, to reduce incentives and to ‘increase border security’. What then, does it mean to talk of ‘hope’ in the context of such increasingly pervasive, hostile and deadly systems of border control? What forms of politics does a focus upon hope open up, and what does it risk precluding? And what might it mean to “hope with teeth” (Mieville 2018)?
The aim for border scholars and activists, however, cannot be to simply engender a sense of hopefulness in the face of such strategies. In this session we therefore seek to further unpack the politics of hope in the context of borders and immigration control by recognising that hope is not necessarily positive, nor is it inherently progressive. We trouble the potentially dangerous simplicity of the ‘hopeful migrant subject’, focusing instead on the multiple forms of hopeful, incoherent subjectivities that are emerging within systems of border control. We also seek to investigate the power of objects and things in shaping the forms and intensities of hope or despair. Furthermore, what temporalities of hope emerge in the context of border control?
We welcome papers and submissions in non-traditional formats (for example video or visual submissions) that explore themes including but not limited to:
Miéville, China. “The Limits of Utopia” Climate and Capitalism, March 2nd 2018. https://climateandcapitalism.com/2018/03/02/china-mieville-the-limits-of-utopia/
Time and Austerity: Troubled pasts/ hopeful futures?
Royal Geographical Society with IBG Annual Conference, London, Wednesday 28 to Friday 30 August 2019
Session convenors: Stephanie Denning (Coventry University), Sarah Marie Hall (University of Manchester) and Ruth Raynor (Newcastle University)
Session sponsorship: the Social and Cultural Geography Research Group
In September 2018, the UK Prime Minister Theresa May claimed that 'austerity is over'. This announcement was made after a decade of austerity policies, the everyday effects of which geographers have explored. These sessions engage with the question of time and austerity: they consider how, after the naming of an 'end,' austerity will endure, and continue to be endured. Over two sessions, we take stock of current research on austerity in human geography and consider where it is heading.
In the first session, lightning talks of 5 minutes and interactive displays will showcase creative practice approaches to austerity research. These will generate discussion with session participants about the place of participatory, activist and socially engaged research in the geographies of austerity. For this session we welcome submissions from both academic researchers, and practitioners and voluntary sector organisations. To support practitioners and voluntary sector organisations' participation we will be able to apply for RGS guest passes to support their attendance.
For the second session, 15 minute conference papers will question the multiple and complex durations of austerity. Is austerity ending? What might be next to come? This session will include projects that are in their preliminary stages of research, and those which focus on the future of austerity.
Together these two sessions will enable us to explore time and austerity: bringing together hope and trouble in the past, present and anticipated futures of austerity.
Please send 250 word abstracts to all three session conveners by Monday 4th February (firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org) and indicate whether you are submitting to session 1 (lightening talk and interactive display) or session 2 (traditional papers).
For more details about the RGS Annual Conference visit https://www.rgs.org/research/annual-international-conference/
Call for Papers for the upcoming RC21 Conference in Delhi, September 18-21, 2019 (Deadline January 20)
Un/Doing Future: Anticipatory Practices, Aspirational Politics (P34)
The concept of the future, its prognostications and applications, shapes present social worlds. Sketches and imaginaries of different futures drive cultural processes and social change. Inspired by the “hopeful futures” subtheme of the RC21 2019 conference, this panel seeks to interrogate the dynamics of futurity and future-making. From government policy to activists’ counter cultural interventions, architectural design, or sustainable technology development, imaginations of the future manifest in practices and take concrete form in cities and beyond. For example, Ghertner’s study of slum clearance in Delhi underlines the ruling aesthetics of an imagined future and its impacts on urban dispossession today (2015). As the repercussions of the future become ever more apparent, futurity itself demands further attention. In this panel session on “Un/Doing Future” we ask: How is the future invented, researched, and renounced? Which anticipatory practices and aspirational politics are at play in shaping urban life? What are the imaginative epistemologies at work in ethnographic research and what role does ethnography play in processes of un/doing the future? For this panel, we are seeking researchers who employ a variety of methods to study these questions, evaluate different future routes, and interrogate their consequences for our present.
To submit, please email an abstract (max 300 words) and clearly state the title of the paper, research questions, theoretical contribution and connection to the panel theme.
Author details about institutional affiliation must also be included.
The subject of the email should include Panel Number and Name (Un/Doing Future: Anticipatory Practices, Aspirational Politics P34).
Email your submission to both conveners email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org and cc: email@example.com at the latest by 20 January 2019.
Please see the https://rc21delhi2019.com/ for further details about the selection process.
Our curated listing of events and news related to time, temporality and social life.