CfP: Borders and Transfers

15-17 June 2022
Society for Romanian Studies
Hosted by Universitatea de Vest and Muzeul de Artă, Timişoara

The Banat is “a reality, and at the same time a myth,
situated at the place where borders meet.”
– Adriana Babeţi (2007)

The Society for Romanian Studies invites you to Timişoara in June 2022, where the soup is sweet and it is bad luck to serve chicken on New Year’s Day. Timişoara, and the Banat more generally, has been shaped by the borders of empires and nation-states, by ethnic, religious, cultural, and economic transfers, and by the cultures flowing along the Mureş, Danube, and Tisza rivers. A melting-pot whose local realities reflect transnational influences, Timişoara is an ideal place for us to reflect on how borders and transfers – both real and imagined – shape the culture and society of the diverse peoples connected to Romania and Moldova. Raising and crossing borders is becoming more contentious than ever, and new boundaries are being thrown up around and within communities, both in the region and in its diaspora, yet the transfer of goods and information continues at an unprecedented rate.

Keynote speakers:
Professor Maria Bucur (Indiana University, Bloomington)
Professor Adriana Babeţi (Universitatea de Vest, Timişoara)

The conference is concerned with the following topics:

  • How borders and transfers facilitate group formation; what they exclude and whose interests they protect and reinforce.
  • How borders are imagined, made real, and enforced.
  • The impact of the pandemic on travel and crossing borders.
  • The difference between spoken and unspoken borders and transfers.
  • Liminal spaces in literature, art and film.
  • Transfers, influences and connections between texts.
  • Borders as limits on beliefs and imagination.
  • Rites of passage, liminality and blockages in space or time. This might involve ageing, travel, career progression, or metaphysics.
  • The contestation of boundaries and restrictions. When are transfers liberating and when are they perilous?
  • Political and military borders in time and space.
  • Corruption as the transgression of regulations and the function of discourses about legal, economic, and behavioral boundaries.
  • Borders and transfers as they relate to the social and cultural performance of gender and sexuality.
  • Interdisciplinarity as a goal and a challenge. The value and limits of disciplinary borders.
  • Border-making as governmentality versus borders that are constructed and challenged from below.
  • Processes of marginalisation, division, and solidarity.
  • Linguistic borders, multilingualism and its social and political implications.
  • Refugees, migration, population exchanges, and ethnic cleansing.

The official language of the conference is English, but papers, panels, roundtables, and discussions may also be delivered in Romanian. Each panel or roundtable will have only one language (English or Romanian), which will be printed on the official program.

At present we are planning to hold the conference face to face, with no hybrid option. If the evolution of the COVID-19 pandemic makes this unfeasible we will communicate alternatives as soon as possible.

Proposals for individual papers, panels, roundtables, book or movie presentations, and art installations should be sent by October 25, 2021, to Participants will be notified of the acceptance of their proposal at the latest by January 25, 2022. Proposals should be written in the language you wish to present in.
• Individual paper proposals should include a title, a brief abstract of up to 500 words, a one-page c.v. (one page), and contact information of the presenter.
• Proposals for panels including 3-4 papers, one chair, and 1-2 discussants should provide a title and description of the panel topic, abstracts of all papers, a one-page c.v., and contact information for all participants. Panel participants should be drawn from at least two different universities/ research institutes.
• Roundtable proposals of 3-5 participants should include a title and description of the topic, a one-page c.v., and contact information for all participants.
• In addition, the conference organizers will accept proposals for presentations of books, movies and art installations; proposals should include a title, a description, a one-page C.V., and contact information.

Conference registration fees:
• For individuals earning more than the equivalent of over $15,000 (USD) per year:
o $120 (USD): This includes an Individual Membership to the SRS for 2022 and an electronic subscription to the Journal of Romanian Studies for 2022.
o $100 (USD): This includes a Discount Membership* to the SRS for 2022.
• For individuals earning less than the equivalent of under $15,000 (USD) per year: $30 (USD). This includes a Discount Membership* to the SRS for 2022.
• For life members and individuals who have already taken out three-year memberships: $20 (USD).
• For students: $15 (USD).

*NB. Discount Members do not receive a subscription to the Journal of Romanian Studies.

There is a limited number of fee waivers for people with modest incomes sponsored by the PLURAL Forum for Interdisciplinary Studies, Moldova. Please contact the conference organizers for details.

The Society for Romanian Studies is an international interdisciplinary academic organization based in the US and dedicated to promoting research and critical studies on all aspects of the culture and society of the diverse peoples connected to Romania and Moldova. For more information about the SRS see

Author: Aisseco

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