Archive for April, 2014


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Pete Ramand, a graduate of Edinburgh’s MSc in Nationalism Studies, has just co-authored, with James Foley, Yes: The Radical Case for Scottish Independence (Pluto, 2014). Both are founding members of the Radical Independence Campaign (RIC).

James and Pete will be joined by guests for its launch on
Wednesday 16 April 7.00pm, at Augustine Church, George 1V Bridge, Edinburgh


“read this book” Bernadette McAliskey, ex-Republican MP

“essential reading” Jean Urquhart MSP

“a vital contribution” Stuart Braithwaite, Mogwai

“a landmark in the debate” Aamer Anwar, human rights lawyer

“An invaluable basis for challenging the norm.”Professor Ailsa McKay

“As incisive and accessible an account of the UK’s social, economic and political decline as anyone could ask for.” James Maxwell, New Statesman

“Clear, lucid and under no illusions about the SNP.” Alan Bissett, author

“A vivid argument for a new beginning.” Niki Seth Smith, opendemocracy

“Deserves to turn the debate on its head.” Jim & Margaret Cuthbert, economists

“It is greatly encouraging for our future to hear these fresh voices and the quality and depth of the analysis they bring.” Robin McAlpine, Jimmy Reid Foundation

“For anyone interested in humanity, social justice, equality and peace, this book is a must.” David Hayman, actor

“The voice of a new generation…Incisive and well-researched.” Alan McCombes, co-author of Imagine

“A welcome breath of fresh thinking to a sterile debate.” Ruth Wishart, journalist and broadcaster

“Essential reading for everyone interested in the left-wing case for Scottish independence.” Neil Davidson, Glasgow University Sociology

“Asks uncomfortable questions that need answering.”Gerry Hassan, UWS, author and broadcaster

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Just a reminder about the ENNIN graduate conference organized at the University of Edinburgh, May 22nd 2014, on ‘Identity, Nations and Nationalism in a Changing World’.
The conference involves diverse panels, a round table discussion on Scottish nationalism and a closing speech by Prof. John Breuilly.
Link for free registration:


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Students have now been occupying the legislature of the Republic of China government in Taiwan for almost a month. This ‘Sunflower Movement’ was sparked by concerns the government was pushing through a bill to further liberalize trade with mainland China without sufficient debate. Students and faculty from departments of sociology on the island have been at the forefront of this movement. This roundtable will be comprised of presentations and a film exploring the genesis of this movement, raising questions for a discussion about its implications, both for the region and for the global spread of ‘occupations’.

Dr. Sophia Woodman, Sociology, School of Social and Political Science
Dr. Daniel Hammond, Chinese Studies

Dr. Yu-Hsiang Chen (PhD at the University of Edinburgh): ‘Why has the movement against the free trade deal been led by students rather than labor unions?’

Dr. Albert Tzeng (postdoctoral fellow with the International Institute for Asian Studies, Leiden, and the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, Singapore): A view from a participatory observer (Dr. Tzeng will be joining us from Taipei)

Jointly sponsored by Sociology, School of Social and Political Science, and Chinese Studies​

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The Centre of Canadian Studies welcomes applications for the 2014 Foundation for Canadian Studies & University of Edinburgh Doctoral Studentship.
Full details of the Studentship can be found at: http://www.cst.ed.ac.uk/Postgraduate/Research/phdstudentship.html
The closing date for applications is Monday 28 April 2014

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Beyond Europeanization and for Independence? A Critical Reassessment of the Regional Imagination in Europe – Chairs: Adriano Cirulli (Uninettuno: cirulli.adriano@gmail.com) and Carlo Pala (Università di Sassari: carlopala@uniss.it)
Discussant: Michel Huysseune (Vesalius College, Vrije Universiteit Brussel; mjhuysse@vub.ac.be)
The vigorous emergence in recent years of pro-independence politics in several European regions (Catalonia, Scotland, the Basque country, Flanders) requires a re-thinking of the place of regionalism in the European Union. The until now predominant paradigm has emphasized the Europeanization of regional identities, i.e. their accommodation within the multi-level governance structure of the European Union policy space, and hence their acceptance of existent nation-states, but also a process whereby regional imaginings were standardized within a narration that highlighted the territory’s evolution towards a European model of a region ready for the challenges of a competitive economy.

While problematizing the paradigm of Europeanization, the rise of pro-independence politics is characterized by its strong heterogeneity which challenges its theoretical interpretation. In the context of the present crisis, justifications of independence may be read as exemplifying a “regionalism of the rich”, a local version of the increasing rejection of solidarity between richer and less privileged countries and regions in Europe. However, contemporary pro-independence parties and social movements are characterized by a strong ideological variety, including movements from the radical right to the radical left, and this ideological variety also includes drastically different perspectives on the desired independence. Moreover, in most cases the rise of pro-independence tendencies pre-dates the present economic crisis, suggesting the necessity of an interpretative framework with a longer time perspective (including the relation between articulations of independence and Europeanized regional identities).
We would like to propose an investigation of articulations of regional identities in Europe that explores their plurality and diversity, and investigates their recent transformations. We welcome in particular contributions
a) That explore and contextualize the content of contemporary articulations of regional imaginations, particularly when related to pro-independence politics
b) That offer a critical rereading of dominant “Europeanized” regional discourses, deconstructing their ideological premises, highlighting their silences and internal contradictions, and the discourses on significant Others they imply
c) That explore dissident forms of national imaginings that offer an alternative to the hegemonic Europeanized format
d) That analyze contemporary articulations of regional identity in Europe from a comparative perspective
e) That offer innovative methodological approaches and theoretical reflections on the construction of regional imaginations.

Papers can be submitted in the following languages: Italian, English, French and Spanish
The selected papers will be considered for the publication in a forthcoming edited book for a series promoted by the Italian scientific Journal “Nazioni e Regioni – Studi e ricerche sulla comunità immaginata” (www.nazionieregioni.it)

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