Association for Ethnic Studies/Department of Ethnic Studies 2020 Conference

Angela M. Nelson's picture
March 15, 2020
Ohio, United States
Subject Fields: 
Ethnic History / Studies, American History / Studies, Area Studies, Cultural History / Studies

The Department of Ethnic Studies at Bowling Green State University, Ohio, is excited to host the 2020 Association for Ethnic Studies conference. In conjunction with the department’s celebration of the 50th anniversary of BGSU’s Ethnic Studies program, the conference will be an opportunity to look back upon the history of the scholarly field of ethnic studies and the social movements that forced the academy to accommodate it. In celebrating our history, we are also mindful of assessing our contemporary moment and the challenges of struggles for justice and equality in the future. We will meet soon after either the beginning of the post-Trump era or its continuation. Either way, the moment will reveal much about the underlying dynamics of American culture and society and be long recognized as a critical turning point in the nation’s history.

Beyond the immediacy of national politics in November of 2020, this is also a moment to think about and understand the changing nature of activism in the 21st century. Nearly a decade will have passed since the days of Occupy, seven years since the murder of Trayvon Martin and the uprising of Black Lives Matter, six years since Michael Brown and Ferguson, five years since Freddie Grey and Baltimore, four years since Standing Rock, three years since Charlottesville, two years since Occupy ICE began in Portland. Where will these movements stand at the crossroads of November 2020? How do we assess the nature of civil organization and social change in a social media environment in which much organizing happens outside of public view? What are the linkages and disconnections between academic and civic activism at this juncture?

We invite proposals for papers and panels on all topics related to ethnic studies and social justice activism. All proposals will be reviewed by a committee including AES board members, BGSU Ethnic Studies faculty, and editors of the Ethnic Studies Review.  This committee also will select a number of papers for publication in a special edition of Ethnic Studies Review (Univ. of California Press).

Deadline for Proposals: March 15, 2020.

Proposals (500 words max.) should be submitted to

Acceptance notifications will be announced by Apr. 15, 2020.

Contact Info: 

For questions about the conference contact Dr. Timothy Messer-Kruse.

Contact Email: