Deadline: August 1, 2022
Download the CFP here
Canada has successfully defied definition for centuries. And yet, as a young and most
diverse country relying on immigration to maintain population growth, questions of what
Canada is, was, has, and will become are of utmost importance to many of its inhabitants
and its governmental institutions alike. With the theme „(Un-)Making Canada“, the 19th
annual conference of the Emerging Scholars‘ Forum of the Association for Canadian Studies in German-Speaking Countries will inquire into practices of fragmentation, contestation, and reconciliation that have (in-)formed Canada’s political institutions and systems as well as processes and strategies of identity-building, community formations, and nation-making.
As a country, what is now Canada has been shaped by conflicting and overlapping federal,
provincial, municipal, and Indigenous jurisdictions, its transition from Indigenous
self-government through French and British colonial rule to a confederation of provinces and territories, and it continues to be characterized by increasing transnational mobility and the challenges of an increasing movement/ongoing flow of refugees and migrants. In an era of resurgent conservatism, and growing numbers of physical, social, and political attacks on, for instance, ethnic racial, cultural, linguistic, and religious minorities, this conference is devoted to examining historical perspectives as well as the role of current events and crises (e.g., COVID-19, the war in Ukraine, etc.) in the fragmentation, contestation, reconciliation, or general negotiation of Canadian political, societal, and cultural issues and identities.
In recent years, a wide range of social and protest movements have erupted across Canada
(e.g., Black Lives Matter, Idle No More Indigenous sovereignty, Missing and Murdered
Indigenous Women and Girls, Me Too, or movements surrounding womxn’s and
2SLGBTQIA+ rights). Most recently, the COVID-19 pandemic and the uncovering discovery of unmarked mass grave sites near Canadian residential schools have rendered visible and intensified racial, gender, and socioeconomic inequities/injustices inequalities in urban and rural areas. Uneven responses to COVID-19 across provinces problematized Canadian notions of equality and universal access to healthcare, and, along with the effects of the global economic crisis (e.g., unemployment, bailouts to large corporations, and rising inflation), highlighted the challenge of addressing the needs of all inhabitants of what is now Canada. The discovery of unmarked mass grave sites near Canada’s residential schools brought the intergenerational trauma among Indigenous communities to the fore, exposed the ongoing denial of genocidal policies and their impacts on public memory as well as broached Canada’s continued struggle to reconcile with Indigenous peoples, if reconciliation is even possible.
Canada’s nation-building practices, the formation and sustaining of its communities, and the negotiation of its political, societal, and cultural identities continue to be sculpted by multitudinous processes of contestation and reconciliation. To open and sustain a dialogue about the making and unmaking of Canada across a wide range of disciplinary, theoretical, and methodological approaches, we invite contributions along three thematic axes:
(1) Fragmented, Contested, and Reconciled Identities and Policies,
(2) (Un-)Making Canada in Literature, Art, and Media, and
(3) (Re-)Configuring Settler, Rural, and Urban Space(s).
Contributions from master’s and PhD students, early-career researchers, and
emerging scholars may include, but are not limited to:
● Memory culture(s) of fragmentation, contestation, or reconciliation (e.g.,
cultural amnesia, intergenerational trauma, Canada’s residential school
system, the 60s Scoop, national/public memory, ongoing injustices against
marginalized and vulnerable communities, Canadian exceptionalism),
● Everyday processes and practices of fragmentation, contestations, or
reconciliation within and between different communities (e.g., Indigenous
peoples, racialized communities, disabled people, the 2SLGBTQIA+
community, migrants, or religious groups, different linguistic groups),
● Literary and media (television and film, social media, digital and multimedia
arts) representations and/or negotiations of forms of fragmentation,
contestation, and reconciliation (e.g., misrepresentations/
underrepresentation/appropriations of Indigenous peoples, diversities, and
minorities, representations of national identity, or portrayals of public opinion
on key societal issues),
● Historical perspectives on contested or shifting practices of identity-building,
community formation, and nation-making (e.g., the politics of multiculturalism,
Indigenous self-determination/sovereignty, Canadian nationalism, settler
colonial, and imperial Canada, the post-national state),
● Current events (e.g., COVID-19, the war in Ukraine) and their role in the
fragmentation, contestation, and negotiation of Canadian political, societal,
and cultural issues and identities,
● The role of protest movements (e.g., Idle No More, MMIWG, women,
2SLGBTQIA+ rights, Black Lives Matter, climate justice, migrant rights,
Québec sovereignty, labor, white supremacy/white nationalism,
anti-vaccination, Trucker protest/”Freedom Convoy”) in the (un-) making of
● Multi-scalar processes of fragmentation, contestation, and reconciliation
across rural and urban spaces in Canada (e.g., different place-/space-based
identities across ethnic, racial, and gender groups in urban and rural spaces,
Indigenous conceptions of land in urban and rural settings, socioeconomic
and political inequalities in these spaces).
Conference Components and Format
Presentation Panels: Panels include individual 20-minute presentations and
10-minute discussion sessions.
Idea Café: The Idea Café informally combines the presentation of new research
ideas and/or project posters with the opportunity for participants and guests to mingle
and engage in conversations with each other.
Panel Presentation: Please submit abstracts of max. 300 words and a short bio note of max. 150 words in English, French, or German to Yvonne K. Jende (firstname.lastname@example.org), Louise Louw (email@example.com), and Emiliano Castillo Jara (firstname.lastname@example.org) by August 1st, 2022. Please outline which of the three main axes above your paper speaks to (if any).
Idea Café: Please submit a short idea/project outline of max. 150 words and a short bio note of max. 150 words in English, French, or German to to Yvonne K. Jende (email@example.com), Louise Louw (firstname.lastname@example.org), and Emiliano Castillo Jara (email@example.com) by August 1st, 2022.