CFP: Spaces of Dissent (1/13/06; MRG, 3/30/06-4/1/06)

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The 8th Annual Conference of the Marxist Reading Group
"Spaces of Dissent: The Borders of Transnational Dreams"
Keynote Speakers: Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak and Peter Hitchcock
March 30-April 1, 2006 at the University of Florida

As the networks of global capital become increasingly complex, we
are compelled to rethink the idea of borders. The obsolescence of
national borders may lead to the transnational-corporate dream of
the end of history, but identities historically determined and
likewise freed by disappearing borders have reemerged in figures
like the refugee. Following Marx's distinction in _The German
Ideology_, the "refugee serfs," rather than requiring an abolition
of capitalism's system of labor like the proletariat, assert their
rights to production and arrive at free labor. Much like the
"refugee serf,"--the global capital refugee realizes an impossible
(Real) structural dimension through which capital itself is called
into question: the refugee is the paradox or contradiction of
capitalism's driving force: the very opposition capitalism tries
to integrate into itself again. In light of these conceptions,
does the refugee represent a missed opportunity to re-establish a
resistance to the coordinates of global capital's structure?

Moreover, if we can read the neoliberal rhetoric of corporate
flexibility as a response to the multi/transnational phase of
global capital, can we see the recent trend in academe toward
interdisciplinarities as mimicking the neoliberal imperative to
find flexibility within fixed borders? Or does it constitute a
radical opposition, providing the opportunity to reconceptualize
the spaces we inhabit?

This conference seeks papers that link the ideas of borders to
Marxist theory.

Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak is a committed activist, renowned
theorist, cultural critic, and influential translator. The
translation and introduction of Jacques Derrida's _Of
Grammatology_ introduced her as a radical critic willing to
interrogate the premises of Marxism, feminism, and deconstruction.
She helped define the field of postcolonial studies with her
seminal essay "Can the Subaltern Speak?" and continues to
complicate the field through such works as _A Critique of
Postcolonial Reason: Toward a History of the Vanishing Present_,
_Death of a Discipline_ and the forthcoming _Other Asias_. She is
Avalon Foundation Professor in the Humanities at Columbia
University and devotes much of her time to teacher training in
India and Bangladesh.

Peter Hitchcock is the author of _Imaginary States: Studies in
Cultural Transnationalism_ and has written widely on literary
studies, cultural theory, Mikhail Bahktin, and dialogics. His
research interests span many disciplines--working-class fiction,
film studies, Marxism, transnationalism, and post-colonial theory,
to name a few--and his book, _Oscillate Wildly: Space, Body, and
Spirit of Millennial Materialism_, continues to highly influence
the study of spatial theory. In addition, Hitchcock has served as
associate director of the Center for Place, Culture, and Politics,
as well as on the editorial board of Cultural Logic. He teaches at
Baruch College and the CUNY Graduate Center in New York City.

We seek papers that address (but are not limited to) the following

-- The agency of the refugee
-- Spaces of consent / dissent
-- Real, theoretical, and imagined refugees / borders
-- Corporate nightmares
-- Worker's rights in a flexible world
-- Renegotiating class borders
-- Citizenship after the nation state
-- The nationalist as refugee
-- Reterritorialized / deterritorialized borders
-- Nomads vs. barbarians vs. refugees
-- The management of global capital, i.e. IMF, WTO, World
-- Structurally adjusting identities
-- The freedoms of Marx's "refugee serfs"
-- Literary representations of borders / refugees
-- The literary in an interdisciplinary academy
-- Disciplinarity's second death
-- The margins of the academy
-- Academic labor in the corporate university

Non-traditional or performative panels will also be considered.
One-page abstracts, questions, and comments should be submitted to
the Marxist Reading Group at


Instead, please paste the abstract into the body of the email, and
also, please be sure to include your full name, contact
information, and academic affiliation (if any).

Abstracts due: January 13, 2006

For more information about our group, conferences, and keynote
speakers go to

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Received on Sun Oct 23 2005 - 23:12:14 EDT