CFP: Jews in Racialized Spaces (University of Cape Town, March 2017)

Adam Mendelsohn's picture
Call for Papers
September 30, 2016
South Africa
Subject Fields: 
Jewish History / Studies, Ethnic History / Studies, Holocaust, Genocide, and Memory Studies, Human Rights, Cultural History / Studies


Jews in Racialized Spaces, Kaplan Centre for Jewish Studies and Research, University of Cape Town

28-30 March 2017

A growing body of scholarship explores the complex relationships between Jews, whiteness, antisemitism, and racism, as well as Jewish perspectives on ‘race’ and racism, among many other related themes. At the same time, scholars of cultural studies have produced fruitful work on how the Jew has been imagined and constructed in different Jewish and non-Jewish spaces.  The ‘spatial turn’ in the Humanities has challenged Jewish Studies to study the dialectic relationship between settlement and migration, place and displacement.

‘Jews in Racialized Spaces’ brings together these two areas of research and theory at an international conference to be held at the University of Cape Town in March 2017. We invite papers that investigate the place of Jews and ‘the Jew’ in a variety of racialized spaces both real and imagined, engaging with conceptual and physical spaces, urban and rural environments, colonial and postcolonial, cosmopolitan and homogenous, Israel and the Diaspora, Jewish ‘spaces’ such as ghettoes and those understood to be controlled by others. 

Since our aim is to develop this field further, we seek papers reflecting many different geographies, chronologies, and approaches. We welcome proposals from all periods from antiquity through to the contemporary, and from all disciplines including history, literary and film studies, art and cultural studies, architecture, geography, sociology, anthropology, religious studies, Holocaust studies, and political studies.

Please send proposals, maximum of 250 words, and a brief bio to Janine Blumberg ( by 30 September 2016. Decisions on proposals will be made by 15 November 2016.

Whilst we are not able to offer help with travel expenses, the Kaplan Centre will provide four night’s accommodation at All Africa House for each participant.

The conference will be hosted in partnership with the Parkes Institute for the Study of Jewish/non-Jewish Relations at the University of Southampton, the Department of Hebrew, Biblical and Jewish Studies at the University of Sydney, and Jewish Studies at Tulane University.


Conference Co-ordinators:

Avril Alba

Michael Cohen

Shirli Gilbert

James Jordan

Tony Kushner

Adam Mendelsohn


Conference organiser/administrator

Janine Blumberg

Contact Info: 

Janine Blumberg (