Call for Papers: Yale InterAsia Connections Conference 2016

call-for-papers-150-21Call For Papers: YALE INTERASIA CONNECTIONS CONFERENCE 2016

Friday February 26, 2016


Deadline: December 15, 2015 at 11:59 pm EST.

Theme: Alternative Asias: Currents, Crossings, Connections

The Yale InterAsia Initiative cordially invites graduate students, postdocs, and junior faculty from all disciplines and institutions to submit abstracts for the 2016 Yale InterAsia Connections Conference “Alternative Asias: Currents, Crossings, Connections,” to be held at Yale University, New Haven, CT, on February 26, 2016. Transcending traditional geographical and disciplinary boundaries, this conference will showcase recent and ongoing projects that explore transregional and transnational connections, and re-conceptualize Asia from the premodern period to contemporary times as an interlinked set of formations stretching from East and Southeast Asia, to South Asia, Inner Asia, the Middle East, and Africa, the North and South Americas, and the Pacific Islands with an Asian connection. Bringing together scholars with diverse geographical and disciplinary specialties, the conference, the first of its kind at Yale, seeks to present opportunities for future collaboration and to foster conversation among early-career scholars on remapping and re-imagining Asia in an age of ever-increasing global connections and shifting regional imaginaries.

We conceptualize “InterAsia” as an analytic that focuses on the ways that flows of people, objects, practices, and ideologies across time and space produce our objects of analysis in an imagined “Asia.” We aim to think in terms of “Asia as process,” which includes analyses of the connections as well as tensions and exclusions involved in the processes of creating “Asia” from the ground up. Our task is to examine the situated techniques and strategies by which Asian interconnections are made imaginable and serviceable for particular ends, and what its exclusions and political effects might be.

Key questions that the conference may explore include, but are not limited to:

  • How is “Asia” constructed and deployed by particular actors at particular times in history, and by what methods can we attend to the inclusions and exclusions happening at various scales in this process?
  • How has the flow of commodities, peoples, and ideas influenced the relationship among different parts of Asia as well as the place of Asia in the world? What power dynamics, truth-claims, contingencies, and inconsistencies constitute these connections?
  • What is the role of frontiers, borders and other internal divides in Inter-Asian connections?
  • How has Asia been interconnected in different periods from ancient to contemporary times, and how might this challenge modern land- or continent-based regional divisions?
  • How can micro- and macro-level perspectives and methodologies contribute to Inter-Asian studies?

All papers relating to “Asia,” broadly conceived, are welcome. The conference accepts proposals for individual papers, to be organized into panels of three to four presenters.  All talks will be no more than 20-25 minutes. All applicants should fill out the application with the following information: full name, email address, institutional affiliation, area of study, title of your paper, 250-300 word abstract, and five keywords for your presentation. The deadline for all applications is December 15, 2015 at 11:59 pm EST. Results will be announced in mid-January, and presenters will be strongly encouraged to submit draft papers or relevant other writing that might have been previously published by February 15, 2016. All papers will be made available to participants through a password protected link on the Inter-Asia website to facilitate sharing among invited participants and organizers at Yale to enrich the discussion at the conference. Please apply here.

The one-day conference will include presentations, a keynote speech, and a banquet for presenters and participants. The Yale InterAsia Initiative will provide round trip economy air fare or rail fare for participants from within the continental USA and Canada, and up to $750 towards a round trip international airfare for selected overseas participants. All participants will be expected to bear other travel related costs like airport transfers, visa fees, etc. All participants will be provided hotel accommodation and all meals at the conference at Yale.

Further information can be found on the conferencewebsite:

For specific inquiries, please contact


The Yale InterAsia Initiative is a collaborative effort between Yale and six other institutions and think tanks around the world that aims to shift paradigms of how Asia is conceptualized by promoting research, scholarly networking and public policy connections. Pushing inquiries beyond nation-states, land-based demarcations, imperial zones, and cultural boundaries, the Initiative promotes conversations that address transregional connections. In addition to Yale University, the main members of the InterAsia Initiative include the Social Science Research Council (SSRC), the National University of Singapore (NUS), the Hong Kong Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of Hong Kong (HKIHSS), Gottingen University (Germany), the Arab Council for the Social Sciences (Lebanon), Koc University (Turkey). It receives support from the Carnegie Corporation of New York, as well as the Asia Councils and the MacMillan Center at Yale University.


About Paula

Paula lives in the vortex of graduate life. She studies medieval Japanese history.
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