Europe’s Past, Present, and Future: Utopias and Dystopias
IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT: We have heard increasing concern from our members about the prospects of carrying out an in-person conference in June 2021. With infection numbers climbing, many countries are putting new restrictions in place; budget cuts and travel restrictions also make it extremely difficult for many people to imagine flying to Iceland next summer. It is still unclear how long this situation will last and when a vaccine might become widely available, and the health and safety of our conference attendees is our top priority. Given these uncertainties, and in close consultation with the Program Committee and the Local Organizing Committee, the CES Executive Committee has decided to move the 2021 event fully online.
University of Iceland | Reykjavik, Iceland
24-26 June 2021
The Council for European Studies (CES) at Columbia University invites proposal submissions for the 27th International Conference of Europeanists on the theme of Europe’s Past, Present, and Future: Utopias and Dystopias. The conference will be held at the University of Iceland on June 24-26, 2021.
The 50th anniversary of the founding of the Council for European Studies will be celebrated at our conference in Reykjavik in June 2021. At the conference, we will reflect on the various ways in which Europe as a place, an idea, a people, an Empire, a utopia, and a dystopia has manifested itself.
As we emerge from the global COVID-19 crisis, Iceland will provide the ideal spot for this reflection, given its centrality to trans-Atlantic space, a core concept to the founders of CES. It represents the utopia of the European social model, and yet, at the same time, it was at the dystopian heart of the financial crisis. Iceland also sits precariously at the juncture of tectonic plates, perhaps a geological metaphor for ongoing shifts, slides, clashes, and ruptures in the deep structure of Europe.
2020 arguably has offered a pause for fundamental thought about the past(s) and future(s) of Europe, which we will gather and showcase at the conference. Among these themes, we expect reflection on the ongoing changes in the boundaries of European citizenship, the fragile institutional arrangements of the European social model, the postcolonial rethinking of Europe in the world, the effects of Black Lives Matter on the continent, the population dynamics that define who is European, Europe’s changing relationships with other regions and parts of world society, including the Global South, and changes in the configuration of global hegemony. These and many other topics will come to the fore in Iceland. Having supported fifty years of research, CES is poised to advance these debates in various ways through cross-disciplinary global scholarship that always deals with Europe in a comparative, and historically informed perspective.
We invite proposals for panels, roundtables, book discussions, and individual papers on the study of Europe, including its various expansions and contractions over CES’ fifty-year history. We encourage proposals in the widest range of disciplines, and particularly welcome panels that combine disciplines, nationalities, genders, scholarly career stages, and other pertinent identities. On the occasion of its 50th anniversary, CES is especially open to engaging participants from traditionally underrepresented or underserved communities.