Anarchist Studies Conference 2022 Call for papers

Anarchist Studies Network // 7th International Conference // Online

Call for Papers: Anarchist Futures

Often called idealists, dreamers, unrealistic, anarchists have a complex relationship to the future. We imagine it, theorise it, work for it. We try to bring it to the present. We draw blueprints of what it might be like. We nurture connections that reflect our hopes. We imagine new worlds, living in the future whilst changing the present. However, utopian thought can be considered both an incentive and a discouragement to action. Its complexity and relationship to the future is particularly meaningful for anarchists. After all, how can political thought be fully understood without projecting ourselves and collectively into the future? Anarchist utopias from the early News Of Nowhere (William Morris, 1890) to The Dispossessed (Ursula K Le Guin, 1974) and other recent fiction has underlined the role of imagining the future in order to build a better world. 

Anarchist Futures is a call to think about possibilities, gaps and interstices where anarchist futures exist. It is an encouragement to walk the bridge of time and make the future present. It is a hope that we can draw lines of solidarity and community which redefine the current state of affairs so that the future is anarchist. 

The 7th International Conference of the Anarchist Studies Network will be held as an online event on 24th-26th August, subject to change to hybrid if we find a suitable location. ASN conferences aim to broach new frontiers in anarchist scholarship and encourage cross-pollination between disciplines. We also invite people who don’t usually reside in or feel comfortable in academia to do workshops, talk about their work, projects, plans and build connections.

The central theme for this conference is Anarchist Futures. A list of suggested topics includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  • How do we imagine the future? What does an anarchist society look like?
  • How do we imagine a world without prisons, the state or police?
  • How did anarchists in the past imagine the future? Did we get there?
  • How does literature and art envision an anarchist future?
  • How do we act for the future now?
  • What is needed to change the future?
  • Who are the actors of change? 
  • What is the role of imagination in changing the world? 
  • What is the relationship between anarchist theory and the future?

As usual, ASN also welcomes submissions that do not reference the main topic but are related to anarchist theory and practice. We also welcome panels and streams on a particular topic. We particularly welcome submissions outside the traditional academic format, such as performances, exhibitions, workshops, among others. We are happy to accommodate papers in any language, but please send an abstract in English. Please indicate whether you want to present online or in person. Abstracts should be sent by 30 April 2022 to [email protected]

We aim to facilitate and accommodate all accessibility needs, including but not limited to wheelchair access, hearing loops, quiet rooms, child-care and material support for low-waged participants.  Please do get in touch with any specific questions, needs or comments and we will do our best to meet them.

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