Call for Submissions for Mini-Conference “Decolonial Options for the Social Science”

Alexander Stingl's picture
Call for Papers
October 31, 2015
United States
Subject Fields: 
Anthropology, Colonial and Post-Colonial History / Studies, Political Science, Sociology, Women's & Gender History / Studies

Call for Submissions for Mini-Conference “Decolonial Options for the Social Science”

Corresponding Organizer:
Alexander I. Stingl

Individual panel organizers/presiders in the mini-conference include, among others Manuela Boatcă, Julian Go, Nicholas Rowland, Ashley Hance, Amit Prasad, and Sabrina M. Weiss.

A total of eight sessions is planned, tentatively on the following topics:

1.     Colonial Heritage and Education   
2.     Concepts and Relations of States (and similar actors and actor-networks)
3.     Beyond the “Human”
4.     Multiple Knowledges, Science Politics, and Indigeneity
5.     Postcolonial Sociology (including critical discussions of Southern Theories,     Critical Realism, and Ethnographic Theory)
6.     Social Movements, Insurgencies, and Epistemic Disobedience
7.     The Global South in the US and the Generation of (In)Justice: Race, Ethnicity,  Class, Sex, Gender
8.     Empirical and Historical Comparative Methods for Studying Global Inequalities through the Post/Decolonial lens

We are inviting submissions for the open slots of any one the panels. An incentive to submit is that, while we expect a high turnout, we are planning to publish an edited collection of papers from the submission pool in the Book Series Decolonial Options for the Social Sciences (Lexington/Rowman&Littlefield; series editors: Stingl, Oyewumi, Weiss, Rowland) and of additional materials via the accompanying website (see:, as well as create on one or two interesting additional events around the mini-conference.

General submission is with ESS with the official deadline set for Oct. 31st, 2015. (all information found here: Submission requires a 250 word abstract. Papers that were not selected for the mini-conference will be entered into the general pool for the ESS.  To help us with pre-organizing the panels, however, it would be very helpful if you would send your  abstract  (250 words) plus a short biographical statement and a notice which panel you would be interested in to Alexander I. Stingl by Oct. 20, 2015. email: 

Description of Mini-Conference Topic:

More than being just an ‘emerging paradigm in sociology’, decoloniality is a troubling and troubled conversation that does more than just cross the boundaries of disciplines, geo-polities, time frames, cultures, and identities (Quijano, Lugones, Mignolo, Walsh, Alcoff, Oyewumi).  Interrogating the acts and gestures of crossing borders as events that simultaneously also make borders, decolonial perspectives have opened the possibility for border thinking and border existences in literature and culture studies, in gender studies, geography, philosophy, and STS. That doesn’t mean that sociology is late to the game, or has been averse to the some of the core ideas in decolonial thought: The sociological imagination has always been perceptive in sniffing out borders and their effects. In the foreground of this productive mini-conference is the continued, active engagement with decoloniality and postcolonial sociology as a conceptual idea and as a ‘trouble-making practice’, enabling trouble-makers from different sociological tribes to create shared-practice communities while mutually inviting (in-viting as in ‘enlivening’ and ‘energizing’) inhabitations and occupations  of the very borders between disciplines in order to sharpen the sociological imagination: Building communities by crossing, inhabiting, and decolonizing borders.
This is reflected in recent publications and trends in theory and empirical directions, from Postcolonial Sociology (Bhambra, Decoteau, Go), to (feminist) sociologies of science and media in Digital Culture and as Cultures of cognition (Koh, Pitts-Taylor, Stingl, Weiss), or sociology of international relations and justice (Rowland, Fishel, de Sousa Santos), the sociology of the city and the rural in the global rural-urban matrix (Sassen, Bakker, Mbembe), and re-imaginations of the Sociological Imagination (Puri, Prasad, Clough). In practical terms, a full mini-conference format makes it possible to engage both, a number of shared umbrella topics (such as indigenous knowledge, border identities, alternate statehoods, queer and border inequalities) and create cross-disciplinary sceneries and moments that broaden the sociological imagination – to include multiple perspectives on discourses in South-South relations, decolonizing social injustice/inequality within the US, multicultural trickster identities in trans-medial crossings, as well as recent  cross-fertilizations that have re-opened pertinent fields in critical race or feminist theory (such as regarding Mestiza Genomics). The mini-conference also opens the possibility to give enough room for graduate students to participate and to engage discussants.

The ESS Annual Meeting is scheduled for March 17-21, 2016, and is being held at the Boston Park Plaza Hotel and Towers in Boston, Massachusetts. The theme for the 2016 meeting is “My Day Job: Politics and Pedagogy in Academia.” For general information about the ESS 2016 Annual Meeting, please visit
Contact Info: 

Organzier of Miniconference:

Alexander I. Stingl