2nd Global Conference: Bullying and the Abuse of Power (November 2010: Prague, Czech Republic)

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

2nd Global Conference
Bullying and the Abuse of Power

Monday 8th November – Wednesday 10th November 2010
Prague, Czech Republic

Call for Papers
Bullying is present in every sphere of life and is perhaps the most important ethical problem in the modern world. It consists, essentially, in the abuse of power, and can involve psychological cruelty; cultural and personal insults; religious and sexual intolerance; the abuse of political and economic power, and ultimately physical force. It can ruin lives, and it can end lives Like other enduring cultural phenomena it has an ability to mutate into new forms including the invasive use of email to intimidate people, and the use of text messaging and social networking sites, which have claimed lives through the suicide of victims.

Most of us first come across bullying in school, whether as victims or perpetrators, or as both. But it is much more significant in human affairs than a bit of pushing and name calling in the playground. It is to be found in sport at all levels; in prisons and detention centres; in education at all levels, from kindergarten to university, among both staff and students, and in workplaces of all kinds. It is found within families, where it manifests itself in the squabbling that goes on between siblings; but in domestic violence; in the physical and sexual abuse of children and elders; in the imposition, within some communities, of unwanted marriages, and in the explosions of human emotion that are honour killings. It is found in international relations, with powerful nations bullying less powerful ones, and some multi-national companies abusing the power that their financial and business strength gives them, to bully suppliers across the globe that provide the products that they sell. It is found in the lack of empathy and fellow feeling that leads to the abuse of political power and physical force, by repressive political regimes that suppress dissent through torture and 'disappearances', and that can lead whole nations from intolerance via discrimination, to genocide.

Conceived as a way of thinking about the abuse of power in every conceivable context, bullying is clearly a multi-faceted phenomenon, of interest and concern to academics and professionals of all kinds, including psychologists, sociologists, teachers, ethicists, politicians, therapists, philosophers, theologians, political theorists, physicians and human rights workers. It is because it is so damaging to individuals and communities, and because it results in human misery and the corruption of societal values, that it is important to address bullying seriously, as happened last year during the 1st Global Conference on Bullying and the Abuse of Power: From Playground to International Relations, which took place in Salzburg, Austria, for three days in November 2009.

This year the project meeting will take place in Prague, Czech Republic and is aimed at lay people, as well as at professionals and scholars with interdisciplinary interests, including psychologists, sociologists, teachers, ethicists, politicians, social workers, philosophers, theologians, historians, physicians and human rights lawyers. It aims to explore the phenomenon of bullying as it manifests and has manifested itself in a wide range of contexts, at personal, social and global levels.

Abstracts are invited for papers, workshops and pre-formed panels that discuss bullying in any context and from any perspective. The following list of themes and sub-themes may be helpful, but abstracts are welcomed that fall entirely outside this list. Abstracts that illuminate and comment on more than one sphere in which bullying manifests itself, are especially welcomed, as are abstracts that draw together insights from more than one academic, professional or vocational area, or that draw from more than one cultural or theoretical perspective. Such abstracts may fall into more than one of the themes outlined, which in an interdisciplinary conference is, of course, to be encouraged.

1. Bullying in School/in the Workplace
~ Bullying of older people/disabled people
~ Sexual bullying
~ Racial bullying
~ Religious intolerance

2. From Playground Bullying to Genocide/Bullying: How Far Can it Go?
~ Human Rights abuses
~ Genocide
~ The Holocaust
~ Human trafficking

3. 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

4. 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 28th May 2010. If an abstract is accepted for the conference, a full draft paper should be submitted by Friday 24th September 2010.

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.
E-mails should be entitled: Bullying Abstract Submission

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: bully2@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: