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Elizabeth Engelhardt, Chair Burdine 437, Mailcode B7100, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-7277

Fault Lines: Graduate Student Conference

Fri, October 8, 2010 • 9:00 AM - 5:30 PM

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Our conference will center on questions of crisis and fissure and will also trace the way in which people negotiate the colonial implications of moments of crisis. The recent earthquakes in Haiti and subsequent outpouring of financial, nonprofit, and military support from the U.S. raise questions about neocolonialism and the relationship between the global north and the global south on the world stage. Disasters of this magnitude can alter or reinforce relationships between people and places globally, like the Indian Ocean Tsunami in 2004, or domestically, like Hurricane Katrina in 2005.  How do racial/economic/social differences/disparities play out during times of crisis?  Where/how do the cracks in the “global world” begin to reveal themselves?  How are these fissures addressed or redressed through national and transnational reactions?  What role does sentiment—personal and political, individual and national—play in national crises like these?  How, for example, does fault or blame get assigned and meted out after a disastrous event, such as the ongoing BP oil crisis in the Gulf?  How do people mobilize or fail to mobilize around emotional response? Moreover, what kind of comparisons can be drawn between contemporary and historical moments of crisis, especially in terms of the way in which these moments of crisis are narrated?

While this conference will solicit papers on a variety of topics, the theme of past and present moments of crisis and fissure and subsequent local/national/global reactions will provide a guide for submissions. Contributors will be encouraged to think about crisis transnationally and within the U.S.

Click here for Conference Schedule!

This event would not be possible without generous donations from numerous centers, departments, and colleges throughout the university. This year's sponsors include:

The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
The Department of American Studies
The Américo Paredes Center for Cultural Studies
The Harry Ransom Center
The Department of English
The Humanities Institute
The Department of Geography and the Environment
The John L. Warfield Center for African and African-American Studies
The South Asia Institute
The Center for European Studies
The Institute for Historical Studies
The Center for Women's and Gender Studies
The Department of History


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