[lbo-talk] "(Un)Making Capitalism": Call for Abstract Submission of Semi-Plenary Talks at the ESA 2017 conference

Christian Fuchs christian.fuchs at uti.at
Thu Jan 12 03:23:29 PST 2017

The European Sociological Association's 2017 conference "(Un)Making Europe: Capitalism, Solidarities, Subjectivities" will take place from August 29-September 1 in Athens. Invited keynote speakers include David Harvey, Silvia Federici, Yanis Varoufakis, Donatella della Porta, Eva Illouz and Hartmut Rosa.

ESA is inviting submissions of abstracts for semi-plenaries on the topic "(Un)Making Capitalism" (and other topics). 2 talks on the sociology of capitalism will be selected from the received submissions. Semi-plenaries attract a large audience at ESA conferences.

Submissions should analyse aspects of the overall conference theme from the perspective of the sociology of capitalism.

For details and submission see: http://esa13thconference.eu/index.php/call-for-papers/semi-plenaries/

Conference theme: (Un)Making Europe: Capitalism, Solidarities, Subjectivities

Europe can be made or unmade, and this is especially true since the ‘Great Recession’ of 2008. European society, and even the very idea of Europe, is under threat.

First, the inherent contradictions of capitalism are obviously stronger than we thought: Greece, where the emphatic idea of “Europe” originated, has experienced severe austerity measures; Europe has seen a deepening of neo-liberal politics, threats to what remains of the welfare state and increasing inequality. Second, solidarities are fragmented in and between societies across Europe. The new world economic crisis formed a context for both the constitution and the undermining of solidarities. On the one hand, from the Arab Uprisings to the various Occupy and Indignados movements – and their manifestations at the level of political parties – we have seen rebellions by citizens demanding political change. On the other hand, refugees fleeing wars have been denied human rights and their lives have been threatened by the closure of borders and the lack of a coordinated European strategy. Third, subjectivities are formed that do not only result in resistance and protest, but also in apathy, despair, depression, and anxiety. Authoritarianism, nationalism, racism, xenophobia, right-wing extremism, spirals of violence, and ideological fundamentalisms have proliferated throughout the world, including in Europe.

As a result, the promise of Europe and the geographical, political, and social borders of Europe have been unmade and this ‘unmaking’ poses a profound challenge for sociology and the social sciences more generally. It is in this context that the European Sociological Association’s 2017 Conference takes place in Athens at the epicentre of the European crisis. The underlying question for the conference is:

How and where to should a sociology that matters evolve? How can sociology’s analyses, theories and methods, across the whole spectrum of ESA’s 37 research networks and various countries, be advanced in order to explain and understand capitalism, solidarities and subjectivities in the processes of the making, unmaking and remaking of Europe?

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