PANEL SEARCH “The Violence of Pluralism: Urban Transformations and New Political Subjectivities in the Rebellious Mediterranean.” Mersin, Turkey 20.-23.3.2013, Deadline: 15.9.2012

As part of the annual Mediterranean Meeting to be held in Mersin, Turkey (March 20-23, 2013) we are coordinating a workshop on the links between violence, pluralism, urbanism and the 2011 uprisings in the Middle East, North Africa and Southern Europe. The title of the workshop (no. 11) is:

“The Violence of Pluralism: Urban Transformations and New Political Subjectivities in the Rebellious Mediterranean.”

We seek empirical and theoretical papers addressing these processes from young and established scholars in the social sciences and humanities. Contemporary and historical perspectives are both welcome.

The 2011 Arab uprisings and indignados protests in cities throughout the Mediterranean basin have witnessed the rise of a new historical generation intimately tied to evolving social and urban landscapes. More than a year later, certain cities remain a crucial site for staging the ongoing struggles against the remnants of the old order in Arab countries or massive protests in European countries. Although often depicted as relatively peaceful, these popular revolts have generated forms of violence, which challenge our understanding of how urban pluralism within various boundaries and scales (ethnic, religious, spatial, etc.) has been managed in a comparative perspective. This workshop seeks to break away from simplistic Orientalist strands of scholarship, which emphasize antiquity, confinement or religiosity around Muslim or holy cities, as well as from colonial depictions of urban duality – a literature that too often overlooks inter-communal dynamics at the micro-level and underestimates social networking across ethnic divides. Instead, the workshop seeks papers that can shed light on the historical and contemporary urban transformations, which have favored the emergence of new political subjectivities and cross-sectarian alliances as well as violent communal conflicts.

The organizers will provide partial funding for travel expenses of select participants.

The deadline for abstract submission is September 15. Decisions will be made my early October. Final papers are due by February 15.

To send your abstract, fill in the online form at:

Daniel Monterescu
Central European University

Benoit Challand,
New York University