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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Call for Proposals For an International, Interdisciplinary Graduate Student Conference

There is a call for proposals for an international, interdisciplinary Graduate Student Conference entitled "Undergoing Health: States of Body and Mind." It aims to bring together the resonant fields of illness and disability studies, medical humanities, public health, posthumanisms, and biopolitical theory to further an understanding of what we consider "healthy" and "unhealthy." Abstracts of no more than 250 words are due by December 16.

The conference will be held at Indiana University - Bloomington, March 27-29, 2014. Dr. Rachel Adams (Columbia University) will be the keynote speaker.
"Undoing Health" aims to bring together the resonant fields of illness and disability studies, medical humanities, public health, posthumanisms, and biopolitical theory to further an understanding of what we consider "healthy" and "unhealthy." How can we responsibly challenge static conceptions of health, wellness, and able-bodiedness? How do we come to "care" for vulnerable populations? What are the forms through which we understand our minds and bodies in states of wellness and disorder? How do we resist pathologies without reifying them? Can we engage the fleshliness of the material body in light of the disappearing subject? What are the life and death politics of sovereignty and governmentality and the ethics of how we understand animal and inanimate forms of life?
As an interdisciplinary conference, "Undoing Health" hopes to host a lively and collegial forum where these strands of thought can share methodologies, ethical concerns, and disciplinary priorities across time periods. They invite proposals for individual papers as well as panels organized by topic. They also welcome the interaction of scholarly and creative work within papers or panels.
Please submit (both as an attachment AND in the body of the email) an abstract of no more than 250 words along with a few personal details (name, institutional affiliation, degree level, email, and phone number) by December 16th, 2013, to iugradconference@gmail.com. Below are some suggestions for possible topics. While this list is by no means exhaustive, they hope these ideas might inspire some exciting new thoughts related to the conference theme:
· Illness and Disability Studies
o States of disability / disabled states
o Against Health
o Crip Theory
o Failed health / uncontrollable bodies
o Anti-Psychiatry Movement
o Psychology / psychiatry and mental disorder/illness
o Neurodiversity / neurodivergence
o Race and disability
o Chronic illness / trauma / pain
· Biopolitics and biopower
o State of exception / sovereignty
o Health in the age of neoliberal capital
o Population studies and statistics
o States or boundaries of life and death (Capital punishment/ Capital violence / Assisted suicide / Necropolitics)
o Barely alive ("bare life")
o (Post)Colonizing health / health in times of slavery and/or genoicide
o Comparative health studies / studies across regions and locales
o Immunization, inoculation, epidemic
o Vulnerable populations
o Economics of healthcare and class "illness," both today and historically
· Politics of Public Health both Now and Then
o Histories of health, hospitals
o Medical humanities
o Public health and insurance
o Pathology and its critics
o Privatization
o Pharmacy, Apothecary, Medicine
o Prescription
o Addiction and rehabilitation
o Figures of the doctor (or quack)/patient
o Scientific racism
o HIV/AIDS (and other STD) prevention rhetoric/discourse
o Natural disaster response and relief
· Posthumanisms
o Animate matter
o Boundaries between animal life and human life/animal studies
o Ecocriticism
o Technology and the human body/cyborg theory
· Ethics of Care
o Reproductive technologies and rights
o Relationships - in sickness and health (marriage, childcare, domestic relations, counseling, etc)
o The (medical) gaze
o Gender and the body
o Queer studies
· Sensations
o Union of body and spirit - dual construction of body and soul
o Phenomenology
o Dulled and keen senses / sensory experience
· Forms of health
o The symptom and symptomatic readings- philosophically and literally speaking
o Literary and cultural forms
o Fleshliness
o Fat studies / health at every size
o Personal diaries, illness memoirs, disability memoirs
o Performances of bodies in health and unhealth
o Dietetics and representations of food, food studies, eating disorders, politics of food, "slow death," diabetes
Their website (http://iugradconference.wordpress.com) will feature more information soon!