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2013 York University Social Anthropology Graduate Program Conference


Risky Business:
An Interdisciplinary Graduate Conference on Risk, Recovery, and Relapse


Friday/Saturday, March 8-9, 2013


Keynote Speaker:

Prof. Karen Ho,
Author of "Liquidated:

An Ethnography of Wall Street" (2009).




Call for Papers:

With the current attention given to global crises, including economic, political, cultural, and environmental, anthropologists are exploring how different actors and concepts move and engage with various articulations of risk, recovery, and potential relapse, in an attempt to uncover how the “severe social dislocations social scientists have usually attributed to global capitalism at large…[have] been actualized” (Ho 2009:4). Following the movement of risk and response through multiple spaces, times, and scales, anthropologists and other scholars explore approaches to production, resistance, and regeneration. This has led us to ask:

What is risk? Who is at risk and when is this acceptable? How is it known and negotiated in or across different contexts and moments? How do you encounter it in your work? How do people recover from the aftereffects of risk? How does risk perpetuate, trouble or disrupt the everyday? How do the interstices between risk, recovery and relapse speak to, or present opportunities, lessons, or (im)possibilities?

The Social Anthropology Graduates’ Association (SAGA) cordially invites fellow graduate students (who are at any stage in their graduate career), activists, and applied scholars to participate in an interdisciplinary and interactive forum on Saturday, March 9, 2013 at York University in Toronto, Canada.

For this conference, we welcome academic papers, panels, and alternative visual media presentations that explore these questions. Possible topics include, but are not limited to, investigations of:

  • Collective and individualized risks: the ways in which bodies show or cope with risk and recovery; attitudes toward risk, recovery, relapse; experiences of embodied risks; cross-cultural readings of risk and contextualized responses at the levels of the individual, community, and nation;
  • Political and economic processes: social mobilizations, revolution, citizen responses, and government policies in response to risk and relapse; the outcomes of neoliberal interventions in global flows;
  • Ecological concerns: reactions to environmental disasters, tourism, changes in land use and livelihood; food production and security;
  • Methodologies: ethical considerations of research, when things “go wrong” in the field, and disciplines in crisis.

To propose a paper, panel, or non-traditional submission (past examples include: films, movement workshops, and original role playing games):






Please submit a cover page with your name, institutional affiliation, contact information (mailing address, phone number and email), and abstract (maximum of 250 words) or sample (for non-traditional submissions). Panels should be limited to 3 papers and a discussant’s presentation (or 4 papers without a discussant). Organized panels should submit the panel abstract (250 words) and individual paper abstracts to the conference in a single submission. All individual presentations will be limited to 15 minutes.

Please note that a conference fee of $20 will apply to all participants.

Submission deadline for abstracts is December 7, 2012. Please send submissions and all other inquiries to Successful submissions may be assembled for publication.

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Prof. Natasha Myers
Exploring practices among artists and scientists who experiment with plant sensoria

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Prof. Natasha Myers
Molecular Embodiments: Modeling Proteins and Making Scientists

Prof. Naomi Adelson
How communication technologies are contributing to new and emerging health practices

Prof. Wenona Giles
Why long-term refugees are denied access to higher education

Prof. Teresa Holmes
Exploring the cultural politics of tourism in a coastal village in Belize

Prof. Teresa Holmes
Challenging assumptions of lineage as tradition in western Kenya.

Prof. Kenneth Little
Touristic encounters and life under the pressures of transformations of public cultures in Belize

Prof. Carlota McAllister
How former Guatemalan revolutionaries are coping with counterrevolutionary violence

Prof. Carlota McAllister
How Chilean gauchos use private property to defend herding livelihood

Prof. Albert Schrauwers
The birth of corporate management in utopian socialism in Ontario and the Netherlands

Prof. Margaret MacDonald
What does the emergence of diversity as a new social movement value within midwifery mean.

Prof. Margaret MacDonald
Images of underdevelopment are "scaled up" as campaigns "count down" to the 2015 Millennium Development Goals

Prof. David Murray
How LGBT refugees experience the Immigration & Refugee Board process and adapt to a new life in Canada

Prof. Daphne Winland
Exploring post-communist transitions in Croatia and Bosnia-Hercegovina