CFP: Violence and Citizenship, 14th Annual Conference in Citizenship Studies

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Call for Papers - DEADLINE FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 30, 2016

Violence and Citizenship, Fourteenth Annual Conference in Citizenship Studies
Wayne State University
Detroit, Michigan, USA
March 30 - April 1, 2017

Fifty years ago many major cities in the United States experienced violent protests in response to dramatic social upheavals. The 1967 Detroit uprising in particular was ignited by a number of social and political factors, including police abuse and increasing Black militancy. In Detroit, the violent insurgency was an assertion of citizenship in direct response to state sanctioned violence organized at the time to constrain access to housing, education, and employment on the basis of race. Such enforced segregation has the effect of disproportionately exposing the most vulnerable populations to other forms of violent crimes and domestic abuse.

Deliberate use of violence against vulnerable populations includes not only genocide but also the recruiting of child soldiers, wars (civil and international) and the refugee crises spawned by wars, terrorism and counter-terrorism, state sanctioned violence and violence by informal actors, the uses of violence to resist oppression and of non-violence to attain the same goal. Violence in all these forms—the use of it, exposure to it, protection from it, and even the absence of protection from it—has direct influence on the access people do, or do not have to the full rights and benefits of citizenship.

Among the many questions raised by the place of violence in our world: How are rights, obligations, and privileges shaped by uses of violence? In what ways does access to violence among citizens shape experiences of freedom and public power? How do uses of state sanctioned violence shape not only citizens’ relationship to public power but also the way society constitutes and conceives of the state itself?

The Center for the Study of Citizenship invites proposals for its 14th Annual Conference in Citizenship Studies. We welcome proposals that examine such topics as:

  • Historical (or present, or possible future) changes in the role of state sanctioned violence;
  • Matters related to uses of violence in citizen insurgency;
  • Accounts of the impact of genocide on the social and political constructions of citizenship;
  • Theories of citizenship that critically engage the dynamics of violence, sovereignty , and citizenship;
  • Relationships between violence and leadership, authority, power, or responsibility;

Although the program committee will give preference to proposals directly relevant to the theme, proposals evaluating all aspects of the study of citizenship are welcome. We invite panel proposals, individual submissions, and suggestions for book sessions focused on exciting, new scholarship in the field of citizenship studies.

To apply, please email Aimee Moran at with three attachments: an abstract of 500 words or less, your C.V., and a 50-word bio. Please be sure that your full name, the name of your institution and your email address are included on each page submitted. If you have a Twitter handle, we appreciate you sharing it with us in the body of your email. Please email us your materials no later than 5:00pm EST on Friday, September 30, 2016.

We provide a limited number of scholarships for international scholars. These funds will be distributed on a competitive basis. If you wish to be considered for a scholarship, please indicate so in your email.

We will notify applicants of their acceptance to present work at the conference by December 15, 2016. We will invite presenters to submit full papers for further review by our advisory board. Invited papers will be considered for publication in a peer-reviewed volume in the Wayne State University Press book series, “Citizenship Studies,” edited by the Center’s director, Marc Kruman and Research Fellow, Richard Marback.