CFP (Online Conference): 9th Annual IU Jewish Studies Graduate Student Association Conference, February 4-5 2021 (Deadline: October 30, 2020)

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The Jewish Studies Graduate Student Association at Indiana University Bloomington is pleased to announce the CFP for their 2021 Conference on the theme “Gender and the Jewish Past”
Online conference date:  Feb 4-5, 2021
CFP deadline: Oct 30, 2020

Almost forty years ago, Yosef Yerushalmi published Zakhor, in which he forcefully argues for a biblically rooted, particularly Jewish imperative to remember. Yerushalmi asks, “What have been the functional dynamics of Jewish memory, and how, if at all, is the command to remember related to the writing of history”? The Indiana University Jewish Studies Graduate Student Association’s 2021 conference will focus on history and memory with attention to the role of gender in constructing the Jewish past. How does gender influence how we remember and write the Jewish past? Do men and women tell their stories differently? Do we hear and interpret these stories differently? What assumptions do we make about men and women in the past, and how does it influence the questions we ask and the narratives we weave as scholars? How have gender norms or expectations shifted in times of crisis, conflict, or trauma?

We welcome papers that illustrate and/or speak to how gender was constructed and experienced in Jewish cultures and spaces, and how these experiences and expectations changed over time. This includes topics such as gendered forms of memory, the history of Jewish masculinity and femininity, and the use of gender to construct nostalgic interpretations of the Jewish past.

This conference will feature the Lillian Solotkin Lecture keynote address on Thursday evening via Zoom webinar delivered by Naomi Seidman, the Chancellor Jackman Professor of the Arts in the Department for the Study of Religion and the Centre for Diaspora and Transnational Studies at the University of Toronto. It will otherwise consist of themed panels of graduate students grouped according to research interests and one to three roundtables. These will take place on Zoom. Potential roundtables include:

What considerations do we or should we bring, ethically, to reading and writing queerness into the past?

What is the role of gender in constructing “violence” or a “time of crisis”?

Has nostalgia shaped scholar’s understandings of gender in the Jewish past?

How do Jewish understandings of the environment affect the ways people have thought about the gendered Jewish body?

The conference is open to all graduate students working in Jewish Studies. Abstracts will be evaluated based on quality and fit. This is an interdisciplinary conference and we welcome papers from many fields including but not limited to History, Anthropology, and Sociology, Music, Literature, Religion, Folklore, Visual and Performance Art, and Political Science.

We invite graduate students to submit proposals for their 20-minute papers, which should include the following information: a paper title, an abstract of between 150 and 300 words, contact information, including name, email address, telephone number, and graduate institution. If you are interested in participating in a roundtable, please provide a 150 word summary of your research interests in lieu of an abstract. Potential participants are welcome to submit both.

This conference will be online and will take place on February 4-5, 2021. Zoom links will be provided with passwords on the conference itinerary.

Please send proposals as an e-mail attachment to jsgsacon@indiana.edu  by Friday, October 30, 2020.

Final decisions will be made no later than mid-December. If you are invited to speak, we ask that you submit a full version of your paper no later than January 15, 2021.