Archive for November, 2014

The University of Edinburgh’s ‘Ethnicity, Nationalism and National Identity Network’ (ENNIN), in association with the ‘Historical and Comparative Sociology Study Group of the British Sociological Association’ invite abstracts for a two-day conference entitled “Nations, history and comparison: a conference on historical sociology and the study of nationalism”. This conference is part of the 50- year anniversary of Sociology at the University of Edinburgh, and will be held Thursday and Friday, May 14-15, 2015.

The conference aims at providing a stimulating environment to exchange ideas and build networks in a welcoming setting that encourages interdisciplinary dialogue and approaches. One of the great strengths of historical sociology and the study of nationalism is the breadth of the fields and perspectives that they encompass, and we encourage submissions from all angles and topics which might fall within the frame of historical sociology or the study of nationalism.

Topics might include but are not limited to:
– Nationalism and Power
– Nationalism and Violence
– Why History matters
– Methodology
– Regional sections: Latin America, Middle East, South East Asia
– Describing and Explaining Social Processes
– New Directions in Historical Sociology
– Bridging the gap between the Macro and Micro in Historical Sociology

Confirmed speakers include:
– Professor Donald Bloxham, School of History, Classics and Anthropology, University of Edinburgh
– Professor Lindsay Paterson, Department of Social Policy, University of Edinburgh
– Professor Roland Dannreuther, Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, University of Westminster
– Professor Jonathan Hearn, Department of Sociology, University of Edinburgh

We invite abstracts of 250-300 words to be e-mailed to ennin.rg@ed.ac.uk by Thursday, January 30th 2015. The proposals should include your name, contact details and institutional affiliation. Final decisions and general registration for the conference will begin in February.

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Call for Papers

ASEN is holding its 25th Annual Conference

“Nationalism: Diversity and Security”

21st-23rd April 2015 at the London School of Economics and Political Science

Nationalists are concerned that the nation should be secure from both external and internal threats. When the state is regarded as a nation-state, these threats are turned into issues of national security and integrity. On the one hand, there are perceived external threats from other states and non-state entities such as international criminal groups and international terrorism. On the other hand, minorities and immigrants may be perceived as internal threats, which do not recognise the legitimacy of the nation-state or are not regarded as truly belonging the nation. Further, in an age of global migration and porous borders it becomes increasingly important to define both who belongs to the nation and from whom they should be protected. This conference considers how both internal and external threats are becoming ever more connected and changing the nature of national security and diversity in nation-states.

Each of the three days of the conference will be punctuated by plenary sessions consisting of presentations from two distinguished academics. The first plenary usually has a theoretical and general focus; the second an historical one; and the third is concerned with contemporary and policy issues. Each provide different perspectives on the conference’s central theme of the relationship between nationalism, security and diversity.
Those wishing to take part in the conference are encouraged to reflect on the many different forms that nationalism, diversity and security interact. Below we outline a range of possible themes and questions which might be addressed by those wishing to give a paper to the conference.

Please submit your abstract online by 15 December at asen.ac.uk/submit-an-abstract/.

Your abstract should be no longer than 250 words and include your name, institutional affiliation and title, when appropriate. Please ensure that you highlight how your paper relates to the conference theme and the central questions it asks.

The nation-state, national minorities and citizenship

Is diversity a problem for nation-states? If so, how new is this? What changes have resulted in diversity being framed as a problem?
How have majority/minority relationships been established before and within the nation-state?
Are national minorities inherently a security concern?
Do national minorities generate new forms of nationalism?
What role does citizenship play when it comes to security and/or national minorities?
Do national minority policies help or hinder security?
Is multiculturalism necessary for security in diverse nation-states?
What role does integration play in the relationship between the nation-state and the citizen?
What role do national institutions play in securing the state?
How do political parties respond to questions of minority and security?
Do far-right groups represent an attempt to return to the essence of nation-states?

Immigration and security

How and why does mass migration come to be regarded as a cultural or an economic or a political threat?
What is the relationship between nationalism and immigration?
Why do particular immigrant groups come to be regarded as a cultural or an economic or a political threat?
Does the concern with immigration and immigrants generate new kinds of nationalism?
Do refugees and asylum-seekers pose challenges for nationalism?
Is statelessness the ultimate form of insecurity?
What is the relationship between statelessness and nationalism?
Is immigration policy a manifestation of nationalism?
Do diaspora communities reinforce nationalism in both ‘host’ and ‘origin’ communities?

International relations and transnational dimensions

How do theories of securitization and of nationalism relate to each other?
When it comes to self-determination, is nationalism itself securitized?
How do transnational organizations such as the UN and the EU affect nationalism? How do they affect perceptions of and strategies for national security?
What impact does the international human rights framework have on nationalism?
Are human rights compatible with nationalism?
Is sovereignty still a valid concept? How does it relate to the concept of national security?
How do nation-states claim responsibility for co-nationals in other states? Can this create problems of national security?
Is international terrorism a threat to national security? Is it itself a new form of nationalism?
What is the relationship between globalization, nationalism and security?
How do non-state entities (criminal groups, diasporas, radical Islamists, etc.) make claims upon national minorities or immigrant groups? How do nation-states respond to such claims?
Can nationalism ever be truly international?
Must the security of one nation-state be secured at the cost of the security of others?

Please email conference@asen.ac.uk if you have any queries.


Association for the Study of Ethnicity and Nationalism

London School of Economics


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Disponibile il programma definitivo del workshop ”Stati, Regioni e Nazioni nell’Unione Europea“, in programma il 19 dicembre, organizzato dai Dipartimenti FLESS e Scienze Politiche dell’Università di Bari, in collaborazione con “Europe Direct” e la nostra rivista.

Venerdì 19/12/2014 presso il Dipartimento di Scienze Politiche dell’Università “Aldo Moro” di Bari. Aula Starace.


09:00-09:15 Saluti

09:15-09:30 Introduzione Daniele Petrosino (Università “Aldo Moro” – Bari)

09:30-10:00 Xosé Manoel Núñez Seixas (Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München): “La mutazione delle utopie nazionali nel XXI secolo: Il conflitto fra la Catalogna e la Spagna”

10:00-10:30 AlessandroTorre (Università “Aldo Moro” – Bari): “Nazionalismo, devolution e indipendentismo in Scozia”

10:30-11:00 pausa caffè

11:00-11:30 Michel Huysseune (Vesalius College – Vrije Universiteit Brussel): ”Euro si – Euro no? Due regionalismi si interrogano sull’Europa” nelle Fiandre e nella Padania”

11:30-12:00 Stefano Bianchini (Università di Bologna): “Le lezioni non apprese dalla disgregazione della Jugoslavia e le loro implicazioni per l’Europa”

12:00-12:30 Ennio Triggiani (Università “Aldo Moro” – Bari): ”Il ruolo dello Stato nazionale ed il processo d’integrazione europea”

12:30-13:30 discussione

13:30-14:30 pausa pranzo (buffet per i partecipanti)

POMERIGGIO14:30-18:30 Presentazione degli interventi e loro discussione:

Giuseppe Consiglio: “Corsica indipendente: insularità identitaria ai tempi dell’Europa Unita”; Arnau González: “Evoluzione post-nazionalista dell’indipendentismo catalano o grande diversivo (2012-2014)”; Katjuscia Mattu: “Colonialismo interno in Italia: tra ricerca scientifica e prospettive politiche”; Andrea Olivieri: Neoindipendentismo, tradizioni inventate e integrazione europea: il caso “Terrotorio Libero di Trieste”; Carlo Pala: “Alla ricerca di una (chiara) identità politica: la Sardegna tra Autonomia e indipendentismo”; Paolo Perri: “The dream offreedom: L’indipendentismo politico in Scozia e Galles”; Marco Stolfo: “La diversità per l’unità. Crisi dello stato nazionale e dell’Europa degli Stati, europeismo critico e democrazia di prossimità. Il caso del Friuli”.

Coordina Andrea Geniola (CEFID-Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona)

Conclude Isidoro Davide Mortellaro (Università “Aldo Moro” – Bari)

Info e contatti: daniele.petrosino@uniba.it, http://www.nazionieregioni.it

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Call for a Collective Debate and Intervention

Politics, Practices, and Discourses of Mobility

First Edinburgh Conference in Critical Migration and Border Studies


The movement of people has long been a contentious socio-political phenomenon that also currently dominates newspaper headlines and political debates in the UK, Europe, and beyond. The flow of people on the move becomes increasingly directed, monitored, and controlled by complex networks of governmental actors, an emerging regime that overflows traditional conceptions of nation-states and their organisation. Migrations highlight and often problematise the functioning of the international sovereign state system and broach diverse questions concerning (the limits of) democratic inclusion and rights, race, and international (labour) relations. In response to the war in Syria, leading to one of the most severe refugee crises in the last decades, the UK as well as the EU have closed their doors to those on the move, fleeing violence and persecution. Reports on deadly tragedies occurring along the external borders of the EU have become commonplace phenomena. At the same time, migrations within the EU are met with increasing opposition: those who leave certain EU member states and move toward Western European countries experience increasing political rejection, social antagonism, and racial discrimination.

How can we understand the discourses that portray people on the move primarily as security concerns or ‘welfare scroungers’ who would threaten the economic and cultural well-being of nation-states and their populations? How are borders practiced as political technologies, keeping some (temporarily) in and others out? How important is race in contemporary migration governance, and in questions of citizenship? How do such discourses, and the practices of surveillance they engender, operate within the university as an institution? And, is it not time to go beyond a discourse that regards migration first and foremost as a political problem that needs to be governed? Is it, instead, possible to regard migration as a social force – beyond the demands of the labour market and citizenship – that creates and enacts ‘new worlds’ with the potential for realising social justice?

In this two-day workshop, we will explore these and other questions through collective debates in an open format. Instead of following the individualistic logic so prevalent in academic settings today, we hope to engage in collaborative thought processes and reflections, and to identify common themes, questions, and concerns that unite our various works. Rather than preparing paper-based individual presentations, PhD students and early career researchers will be invited to come together in small groups to provide short inputs and stimulate collective discussion. Following up on successes with this format at a previous workshop in Leicester, this event seeks to further promote and extend MobLab, an emerging network of critical researchers working at the intersections of activism and academic knowledge production in the field of migration, mobility, and border studies. To further stimulate collective reflection and debate, keynote speeches will be given by Vicki Squire (Warwick University) and Yasmin Gunaratnam (Goldsmiths, University of London).

Possible themes to discuss include (but are by no means limited to):

  • What boundaries exist between academia and activism? How can (or should?) we overcome them?
  • How can we intervene in the politics of migration from a critical perspective?
  • How are we teaching migration and mobility, and how can we encourage critical reflections on these topics in the classroom?
  • How can we deal with institutional requirements in higher education, such as the monitoring of students for border control purposes?
  • How do pressures within academia – such as the need to publish in particular outlets, to excel individually, to obtain research funding – affect our ability to produce critical work? What coping strategies can we develop?

If you are interested in participating in this event, please send a short abstract of the concrete problematic you would like to discuss, and a brief biographical note reflecting your interests and background by 26/11/2014 to

Nina Perkowski n.perkowski@sms.ed.ac.uk

and Veit Schwab V.Schwab@warwick.ac.uk

This will allow us to group people according to their interests. If you have further questions regarding the format, the workshop, or the network, don’t hesitate to send us an email as well.

Applications from persons without formal academic affiliation are highly encouraged!

A limited number of travel grants is available. Please indicate in your application whether you will need financial support for travel and/or accommodation in Edinburgh.

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Centre for the Advanced Study of the Arab World, Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies and the British Council in Morocco are happy to present:

CASAW Research Seminar Series: “The Romantic Dimension of the Jihadist Movement”, by Prof Mohamed Tozy

An exploration of the mental and social universe of Moroccan Jihadi militants reveals that besides theological arguments, Jihadi mobilisation is firmly rooted in romantic notions of struggle against wordly injustices.

Prof Mohamed Tozy is the director of the School of Governance and Economy (EGE) at Université Mohammed VI in Rabat. Morocco’s most renowned political scientist, Tozy was a member of the Consultative Committee on Constitutional Reform in 2011. His numerous publications on Islamism include the seminal Monarchy and Political Islam in Morocco (1999, in French).

Date: Friday 21 November, 3.00PM
Venue: Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies,19 George square, Room G2

The talk will be followed by a reception.

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Hindu nationalism in the diaspora (1946-1977)

Hindu nationalism in the diaspora (1946-1977): the early years of the Sangh Parivar’s global expansion
Edward Anderson (University of Cambridge)
Date and Time
27th Nov 2014 16:0018:00
Sidney Smith Lecture Theatre, Medical School, Teviot Place, Doorway 1, Room 2.520


Support for Hindu nationalism from the Indian diaspora is frequently mentioned, highlighted this year in Narendra Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party’s dramatic election victory. However, the early days of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh’s (RSS) expansion abroad is largely neglected (in sufficient depth) in the existing literature. This paper identifies and analyses the East African heritage of much of the Western Hindu nationalism we know today. It is argued that this represents a formative period for both British Hindus and British Hindu nationalism, from the apocryphal story of the first expatriate RSS shakha (branch) aboard an ocean liner in 1946, to the emergence of Nairobi as the first hub of Hindutva activities outside India.

From the late-1960s, as East African countries were gaining independence, huge numbers of Indians became ‘twice migrants’, under varying degrees of coercion. A significant proportion emigrated to Britain, many taking with them their Hindu nationalist upbringing, ideology, institutions, and organisational hierarchies. This paper charts the initial growth of the RSS abroad, both in East Africa and Britain, over the second half of the twentieth century. It delineates both the formal coordination of the RSS through overseas pracharaks (full-time workers) and travelling Sangh luminaries, as well as more informal and quotidian transnational networks.  The second half of the paper looks at the significance of Indira Gandhi’s Emergency (1975-77) in the development and entrenchment of Hindu nationalism in the diaspora. The paper addresses the degree to which the circumstances of Hindu nationalism’s expatriate development shaped the varying levels of mimesis and divergence, coordination and independence, from the Indian RSS progenitors.

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