[Aaus-list] [Fwd: Call for Papers: Epistemologies of In-Betweenness: East Central Europe and the World History of Social Science, 1890-1945]

znayenko at andromeda.rutgers.edu znayenko at andromeda.rutgers.edu
Mon Oct 20 13:35:01 EDT 2014

---------------------------- Original Message ----------------------------
Subject: Call for Papers: Epistemologies of In-Betweenness: East Central
Europe and the World History of Social Science, 1890-1945
From:    The East Central European Center <harrimanevents at gmail.com>
Date:    Mon, October 20, 2014 11:56 am
To:       <znayenko at andromeda.rutgers.edu>

Stay current with the East Central European Institute.
See what you missed, and mark your calendars for upcoming events.

Call for Papers: Epistemologies of In-Betweenness:
East Central Europe and the World History of Social Science, 1890-1945

Institut für Ost- und Südeuropaforschung Regensburg
29-30 May, 2015

Convenors: Katherine Lebow, Vienna Wiesenthal Institute for Holocaust
Research; Małgorzata Mazurek, Department of History, Columbia University;
Joanna Wawrzyniak, Institute of Sociology, Warsaw University; Ulf
Brunnbauer, Institut für Ost- und Südeuropaforschung
Regensburg/Universität Regensburg.

The period ca. 1890-1945 saw both the crystallization of modern social
scientific disciplines and some of the most profound crises of the social,
political, and economic systems they were devised to study. This workshop
asks how intellectuals’ sustained engagement with these crises in the
“shatterzones” of East Central Europe shaped the development of social
science between the end of the nineteenth century and the onset of the
Cold War.

Conceived as a follow-up to the workshop “Malinowski’s Children: East
Central European ‘Betweenness’ and Twentieth-Century Social Science”
(Heyman Center for the Humanities, Columbia University, May 2014), the
present workshop aims to develop new approaches to the study of social
science history. Besides decentering classic narratives of scientific
innovation and dissemination focusing on “the West,” it seeks to
historicize key concepts that structure our understanding of the
region’s history—concepts that took shape during this period, but
remained unstable throughout, and that were themselves part of that

As the birthplace of many canonical social scientific thinkers, East
Central Europe has hardly been neglected in studies of social science
history. The region has rarely, however, been considered as a historical
“locality” of knowledge-creation—that is, a node in the mediation,
translation, and transformation of social science per se. Historically,
East Central Europe was a highly ambiguous terrain in a modern global
imaginary characterized (and categorized) by asymmetries of power. To the
extent that social science arose in response to such asymmetries
(anthropology vis-à-vis imperialism/colonialism, sociology vis-à-vis
capitalism/class, psychology vis-à-vis sexuality/gender, etc.), we are
interested in how East Central European scholars problematized their
region’s “in-betweenness,” its non-normative status in the modern
world. We are interested, too, in how East Central European scholars
—confronted with the collapse of empires, the crisis of the global
economic system, and the rise of nationalism and racism—understood their
disciplines’ human and historical potential. Would social science serve
to naturalize and legitimate authority, or was its purpose to demystify
and liberate?

Papers may address a wide range of topics, including but not limited to
the transnational circulation of people and ideas (biographies on the
move; the translation of concepts from the local to the global, and
vice-versa); competing historical frameworks and chronologies of social
science history (Western vs. East Central European; Eurocentric vs.
non-Eurocentric); regionally distinct fields of social research such as
nationalism studies or Jewish social science; shifting deployments of
specific concepts, methods, or epistemologies (“backwardness,”
“cosmopolitanism,” “unevenness,” humanism vs. positivism); as well
as dead ends and failures, paths not taken, and repressed or forgotten
disciplinary histories.

Prospective speakers are invited to submit abstracts of approximately 500
words and their c.v. Submissions should include name, affiliation and
contact details. The deadline for submissions is December 1, 2014. For
more information about the conference, or to submit an abstract, please
email the organizing committee at:

katherine.lebow at vwi.ac.at (mailto:katherine.lebow at vwi.ac.at) ,
mm4293 at columbia.edu (mailto:mm4293 at columbia.edu)  or
wawrzyniakj at is.uw.edu.pl (mailto:wawrzyniakj at is.uw.edu.pl) .

Conference participants will be asked to submit original papers (max. 10
000 words) in English no later than May 15, 2015. The papers will be
pre-circulated among all participants to leave time for discussion at the

The conference is supported by the Graduate School for East and Southeast
European Studies (University of Regensburg, LMU Munich), the Institut für
Ost- und Südeuropaforschung Regensburg and the Department of History,
Columbia University.

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Myroslava Tomorug Znayenko
Professor Emerita
Slavic Languages and Literatures
Rutgers University
znayenko at andromeda.rutgers.edu
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