A distribution of: CentralAsia-L - Announcement List for
Central Asian Studies
WORKSHOP/CFP- Anthropology & Gender in the Middle East,
Berlin, 30 Nov.-2
CALL FOR PAPERS
Anja Peleikis, Centre for Modern Oriental Studies, Berlin
Friederike Stolleis, University of Bamberg
Unlike the Anglo-American and French academic traditions, where
anthropological research on the Middle East has generally been encouraged, the
production of knowledge on the region has been the main preserve of historians
and Islamic scientists in Germany. This raises questions about the position of
anthropological studies of the Middle East and North Africa in German academic
life. How did the two disciplines of anthropology and Middle East studies
develop historically without hardly ever overlapping? And how do individual
researchers combine theoretical and methodological knowledge with their regional
specialisation? This workshop explicitly
aims at bringing together anthropologists who work on the Middle East and North
Africa, from Germany and abroad.
We would like to invite reseachers who are interested to present
their work through a gender-aware perspective. We believe that gender relations
provide a particularly useful lens through which to describe and analyse the
changing life-worlds of women and men. These worlds are embedded in
social, economic and political transformation in the region and in large-scale
transnational and global processes.
The workshop is set within the context of the themes of
"translocality" and the "public sphere", two lines of
research which shape a diverse variety of research projects at the Centre for
Modern Oriental Studies in Berlin. We do not expect to exhaust these broad
subjects, but to provide a forum for
their exploration, focussing on three main themes:
1. Locating Anthropology in the Middle East. This session shall give room to
explore the historical and actual involvement of anthropological endeavours in
the Middle East. In an
increasingly globalised world the practice of fieldwork and the
researcher's identities have been questioned and re-conceptualised. We would
like to encourage discussions which explore this challenge of coming to
with the changed context of ethnographic work in Middle East societies which
become more and more deterritorialised.
2. Transnational/Translocal Agency and the (Re-)construction of Gender Relations.
In this panel we would like to focus on the changes and continuities in gender
systems within the context of ongoing mobility and the emergence of
transnational and translocal communities. Several questions might be
addressed: How can migration experiences reinforce or loosen gender asymmetries?
How are local gender identities redefined and reconstructed in globalised, de-territorialised
contexts? How are political, social or religious movements linked
transnationally and how are they gendered?
3. Gender and the Public Sphere. Recent research on Middle
East societies has challenged the notion that social worlds of men and women are
reducible to spheres of "private" and
"public" with power limited to men in the public arena. We would like
to challenge the usefulness of a public-private distinction for the
understanding of contemporary women's lives in the Middle East. Questions may
include: How do activities taking place in private interfere with or influence
public life and vice versa? Is the distinction between "public
and private space" synonymous with that between "public and private
life"? How would a definition of public and private need to be formulated
in order to remain flexible to cultural variation? Can we talk of the emergence
of transnational public spheres?
We are looking for active participants who would like to present a paper
themselves or act as discussant. If you would like to participate, please inform
us by 31st of May 2001. If you want to submit a paper, please do also send us a
preliminary title and a brief outline of one to two pages as
well as two or three sentences about yourself (studies, current occupation).
Contributions should be in English and must be submitted in
written form by October 15th.
The workshop will take place on the premises of the Centre for
Modern Oriental Studies, Kirchweg 33, Berlin Nikolassee, from Friday
afternoon, 30th November to Sunday lunchtime 2nd of December. There will be
limited funding available to cover travel expenses and accommodation for
conference participants. However, we encourage you to seek alternative funding
Friederike Stolleis and Anja Peleikis
Please do not hesitate to contact us for further details:
Dr. Anja Peleikis
Centre for Modern Oriental Studies