Affectivities of Migration

Mohamed Shafeeq Karinkurayil's picture

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Call for Papers
September 3, 2022
Subject Fields: 
Humanities, Immigration & Migration History / Studies, Local History, Popular Culture Studies, World History / Studies

Migration is an ineluctable reality of our contemporary existence. Cultures of large-scale migration from India are familiar to us, such as the prevalence of migration to North America and the Anglophone world. Less understood and represented in the scholarly literature are the other loci of migration—such as the millennia old migrations to and from the Gulf, or indeed the numerous local, intra-India migrations to metropoles proximate or far. In recent years, scholars have noted that the push-pull factors of economic hardship or opportunity are inadequate to explaining the drives for migration. There is thus the need to both study these different types of migration, as well as to study them in an interconnected, dynamic fashion—one that gives fair play to the large variety of images and ideas that such migration generates in both the cultures of sending and the cultures of hosting. Literatures, films, songs, artefacts and experiential narratives all provide us venues of studying migration in its multi-hued affective specificities.

Our identities today are as much of the routes we have taken as they are of the roots we spring from, or spread adventitiously. We move out in search of education or livelihood, in order to discover ourselves, to live our best or most hopeful lives. Migration conditions us intimately—as a means of moving out of our fears, or that of fulfilling aspirations, or as that which stimulates, or is propelled by nostalgia/fantasy/trauma. Leaving its trace on our skin, modulating our senses, inflecting our tongues and colouring our images, migration is an embodied and affective fact, the archives of which are to be sought in both the routine and the creativity of our everyday, and in its interruption by times before and beyond.

This two-day Conference on Affectivities of Migration organized by the Manipal Centre for Humanities (a constituent unit of Manipal Academy of Higher Education) will be held at Manipal in coastal Karnataka. The conference aims to bring together scholars engaged in studying migration in these subjective and embodied dimensions. It seeks to explore modes of representing migration and the diverse methodologies employed in the scholarship. In bringing to the fore of academic enquiry the assemblage of representations that drives migration, scholars will engage with questions pertaining to the phenomenology of movement, and its multiple expressions—both the eloquence and the silence of migration as an experience, as well as the manner in which it speaks to the extimacy of our existence.

The conference invites paper proposals from PhD researchers and early career faculty members on any of the following themes:

Methodological issues in studying migration

Writing Migration

Migration and Memory

Migration and Literature

Migration and Technology

Migration and Performance

Migrant artefacts

Migration and Gender

Migration and Time

Migration and Space


The abstracts (around 500 words) with a bio note (max. 200 words) are to be sent to with a copy to not later than September 3, 2022 (Saturday). The subject line should mention “Abstract Submission: Affectivities of Migration.”

We encourage applicants to send original works that are not under review for publication.  If applicants wish to send work that is under consideration for publication elsewhere, please indicate this clearly in the abstract.

Selected applicants will be informed by September 17, 2022, and full papers (approx. 3000 words excluding citations) will be required by November 12, 2022. The presentations are to be of 20 minutes duration.

Selected candidates will be provided food and accommodation at Manipal between 26 – 29 January 2023.

Contact Info: 

Dr. Mohamed Shafeeq Karinkurayil, Manipal Centre for Humanities, Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE), Manipal, India. 

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