“Colonial Violence,” MVSA 2014

Abstracts due: October 31, 2013

Dates: April 11-13, 2013

Location: University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Entire CFP Link

See also: MVSA Conference CFP

Seminar Leader:  Professor Richard Price, Department of History, University of Maryland, College Park

Historical studies of violence are legion.  Historians have long addressed the legal, social, cultural and political aspects of violence, as reflected both in criminal activity and in domestic interactions.  It is well-known, for example, that the violence of “primitive rebels” in peasant societies is structurally and politically distinct from violence in “modern,” urbanized industrial societies.  And much attention has been paid by historians and others to the developmental implications of these differences.

There is, therefore, enormous scope for an inter-disciplinary discussion and treatment of colonial violence.  This seminar will explore the historical and cultural dimensions and representations of colonial violence in Britain’s Victorian empire. The panel organizers are particularly anxious that the question of colonial violence be addressed from the standpoint of different disciplines.  And the panel chairs encourage scholars working on any aspect of this question to submit proposals.  The kinds of questions that could be addressed include: the political dynamics of colonial violence; the relationship between violence and settler politics.  To what extent is the colonial experience inherently genocidal towards indigenous peoples?  What is the psychology of colonial violence?  What are the relationships between violence in the colonies and the law?  How do the many ideological rationalization of empire justify and explain colonial violence?  How is colonial violence represented in the culture of empire in the metropole—in its literature, its theater, for example?

Send a 300-word abstract and 1-page vita (both as MWord documents) by October 31, 2013, to Richard Price: rnp@umd.edu


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