1st Global Conference: Bullying and the Abuse of Power. From the Playground to International Relations (November 2009, Salzburg)

full name / name of organization: 
Dr Rob Fisher/Inter-Disciplinary.Net

1st Global Conference
Bullying and the Abuse of Power:
From the Playground to International Relations

Friday 6th November - Sunday 8th November 2009
Salzburg, Austria

Call for Papers
This inter- and multi-disciplinary conference aims to explore the phenomenon of bullying as it manifests and has manifested itself in a wide range of contexts in the personal, social and global spheres. Bullying is a multi-faceted phenomenon, of interest and concern to academics and professionals of all kinds, including psychologists, sociologists, teachers, ethicists, politicians, social workers, philosophers, theologians, historians, physicians and human rights lawyers. It is present in every sphere of life and consists, essentially, in the abuse of power. It can involve psychological cruelty; cultural and personal insults; religious and sexual intolerance. Anyone can be bullied; anyone can bully. It goes on in schools, workplaces, and on the street. It can occur in any context in which people meet people. Bullying damages society; it produces human misery and corrupts societal values. It can ruin lives, and it can end lives. Most of us have experienced bullying, whether as a victim or as a perpetrator, or as one who has stood by while bullying went on before our eyes. Like other enduring cultural phenomena it has an ability to mutate into new forms – for example, the invasive use of email to intimidate people, or the use of text messaging and social networking sites which has claimed lives through the suicide of victims.

Abstracts are invited for papers that discuss bullying from any of the perspectives and in any of the contexts mentioned above. They are also invited for papers that address bullying as it manifests itself in other contexts at a societal and global level, including the abuse of political and economic power and ultimately physical force, by repressive political regimes that suppress dissent, through, for example, torture and 'disappearances'. Submissions are welcomed from people who view other phenomena in the modern world as manifestations of bullying, including the ways that powerful nations exert power over and interfere in the affairs of less powerful ones, or the ways in which some multi-national companies do business with suppliers of produce, and manage to exert their influence over the shopping habits of consumers, to the detriment of local retailers. Bullying is perhaps the most important ethical problem in the modern world, because it is arguably present everywhere.

The following list of themes and sub-themes may be helpful. Abstracts which illuminate and comment on more than one sphere in which bullying manifests itself,will be especially welcomed, as will abstracts that draw together insights from more than one academic, professional or vocational area. As a result, abstracts may fall into more than one of the themes outlined. The conference programme will thus be organised with a view to producing the most vigorous and helpful debate.

* Bullying in everyday contexts
Bullying in school/in the workplace
Bullying of older people/disabled people
Sexual bullying
Racial bullying
Religious intolerance

* From playground bullying to genocide/Bullying: How far can it go?
Human Rights abuses
The Holocaust
Human trafficking

* International relations
Cultural intolerance
Terrorism as a means of persuasion
Imposition of the wishes of the developed world on developing countries
Bullying of Indigenous people

* Multinationals, impoverished nations and corner shops
The effects of globalisation on business
Changing patterns of shopping: corner shops vs superstores
Advertising and vulnerable consumers
Cut price goods and low pay for workers

Papers will be considered on any related theme. 300 word abstracts should be submitted by Friday 12th June 2009. If your paper is accepted for presentation at the conference, an 8 page draft paper should be submitted by Friday 9th October 2009.

300 word abstracts should be submitted simultaneously to both Organising Chairs; abstracts may be in Word, WordPerfect, or RTF formats with the following information and in this order:

a) author(s), b) affiliation, c) email address, d) title of abstract, e) body of abstract.

Please use plain text (Times Roman 12) and abstain from using footnotes and any special formatting, characters or emphasis (such as bold, italics or underline). We acknowledge receipt and answer to all paper proposals submitted. If you do not receive a reply from us in a week you should assume we did not receive your proposal; it might be lost in cyberspace! We suggest, then, to look for an alternative electronic route or resend.

Organising Chairs

Gavin J Fairbairn
Professor of Ethics and Language
Leeds Metropolitan University
United Kingdom
Email: G.Fairbairn@leedsmet.ac.uk

Rob Fisher
Priory House, Wroslyn Road
Freeland, Oxfordshire OX29 8HR
Email: bully@inter-disciplinary.net

The conference is part of the Ethos Hub series of ongoing research and publications projects conferences, run within the Critical Issues domain which aims to bring together people from different areas and interests to share ideas and explore innovative and challenging routes of intellectual and academic exploration.

All papers accepted for and presented at the conference will be eligible for publication in an ISBN eBook. Selected papers may be developed for publication in a themed hard copy volume.

For further details about the project please visit:

For further details about the conference please visit: