CFP: What is Materiality in Tibetan Studies?

Trine Brox's picture

We would like to bring to your attention a call for abstracts for the forthcoming IATS 16th seminar, which will be held in Prague. 


What is Materiality in Tibetan Studies?


Material culture plays a critical role in constructing Tibetan worlds, yet its presence remains under-theorised in the field of Tibetan Studies. Only recently has a body of research combining Tibetan Studies and Materiality started to emerge via the disciplines of Anthropology, Museology, and Material Culture Studies. In this panel we aim to both survey on-going research and disrupt current approaches to materiality by considering socially constructed materiality, but also the materials constituting things.


We are interested in papers from researchers thinking about the material in a diverse number of disciplinary ways and particularly on topics related to:


  • The life cycles of materials, how they are produced, imagined and talked about, how they are worn and consumed, and their breakdown and expiration; 
  • The affordances and enactments of materials, ie. how they are interacted with and experienced but also how the materials themselves enact their properties; 
  • Material innovation, upheaval and recasting, how, why and when is the material transformed, transmogrified, or becomes immaterial; 
  • Material Analysis, what do technical investigations into the act of making offer understandings of raw materials, techniques, provenance, and methods of preservation;
  • Digital Materiality, through new technologies how has the material become sharable, accessible, virtual, augmented, decipherable and useful.

There continue to be few forums dedicated to Tibetan Materiality. In response to this we plan to create a Tibetan Materiality Group; a space for coming together and discussing potential conceptual frameworks and methodologies that enable material understanding. Based on the responses to this call we will set up a series of workshops, lectures and seminars prior to IATS 16th seminar to develop our collective and individual thinking and to foster long term interdisciplinary dialogue between participants. We see this panel as an opportunity to review research undertaken in the lead up to the conference and to discuss how we can develop the group beyond the life of the conference, including ideas for future collaboration and publication. 


You can find out more about our preliminary research here: 

We look forward to receiving 400-word abstracts from established scholars, early career researchers, and doctoral students by the 30th August 2021. Please submit your abstract and any questions to Emma Martin: 


Best wishes, 


Emma Martin 
Trine Brox
Diana Lange 

Categories: CFP