Race, affect and alterity: rethinking climate change and migration – Workshop at Durham

Call for Papers/Announcement

Race, alterity and affect: rethinking climate change-induced migration and displacement

18-19 June 2013, Durham University

Organisers – Andrew Baldwin (Durham University W.A.Baldwin@durham.ac.uk) and Katherine E. Russo  (Università degli Studi di Napoli L’Orientale)

As policy and scholarly debates about climate change and migration gather pace, to date very few interventions have addressed how such debates are shaped by notions of race and alterity. The imperative to address this lacuna is further emphasised by the twinned observations that climate change is expected to amplify the incidence of environmental/natural disasters i.e., landslides, extreme weather events and droughts, and that narratives of disaster very often contain explicit and/or implicit racist sentiment. Such a context suggests that now is a propitious moment to begin a concerted interrogation of these themes.

The aim of this workshop is thus to bring debates about climate change and migration broadly defined into dialogue with contemporary critical race theory and postcolonial theory. Recent interventions (Baldwin 2012; Baldwin forthcoming) have suggested that racialisation in the context of debates about climate change and migration unfolds through at least three interrelated tropes: naturalisation, the loss of political status, and ambiguity. This work also argues that given its historiographical emphasis, theories of the postcolonial appear to be insufficient for properly theorising the alterity of the climate change migrant, since the discourse on climate change and migration is written almost exclusively in the future-conditional tense. In contrast, others (Farbotko 2010) have very productively embraced theories of the postcolonial to interpret issues of climate change and mobility.

Thus one of the aims of this workshop is to consider how critical race theory and theories of the postcolonial might be usefully reinterpreted to address the future-conditionality of climate change and migration discourse. At this stage, we are particularly interested in innovative contributions from post-graduate scholars.

Topics that might be addressed in the workshop include but are not limited to:

  • race and affect
  • xenophobic and nationalist reactions to environmental disaster
  • environmental change, ethnicity and internal displacement
  • critical race theory, climate change and migration/displacement
  • postcolonial theory, climate change and migration/displacement
  • ecocritique
  • climate change and cultural media/arts
  • environmental change, states of emergency and the suspension of citizenship rights
  • ontologies of difference and the future-conditional
  • disaster risk reduction/disaster risk management, climate change and difference

Keynote Speakers – David Theo Goldberg (University of California, Irvine) Uma Kothari (Manchester University)

Partners: COST Action IS1101 Climate change and migration; Institute for Advanced Studies (Durham University); Università degli Studi di Napoli L’Orientale

Abstract Submission deadline: 15 March 2013

Registration: This is an open event, although space is limited. If you wish to register for this workshop please, notify Ellie Whittles (e.c.whittles@durham.ac.uk) by the registration deadline 3 May.

Event website: http://www.climatemigration.eu/

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One Response to Race, affect and alterity: rethinking climate change and migration – Workshop at Durham

  1. Anne Held says:

    You can look at recently pujblished books and papers on climate change-induced displacement, see:

    OHCA-IDMC: Monitoring disaster displacement in the context of climate change (Geneva: Norwegian Refugee Council – Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre/ United Nations Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, 2009).

    Renaud, F.: Environmental Migration: Promoting a “no Regrets” Approach Today (Bonn: International Center for Conversion Bulletin 53: 1-2, 2010).

    Renaud, F., J. J. Bogardi, et al.: Control, Adapt or Flee – How to Face Environmental Migration? (Intersections 5. Bonn, United Nations University Institute for Environment and Human Security, 2007).

    Renaud, F./O. Dun/et al.: A Decision Framework for Environmentally Induced Migration (International Migration 49(S1): 5-29, 2011).

    Warner, K.: Global Environmental Change and Migration: Governance Challenges (Global Environmental Change 20(3): 402-413, 2010).

    Warner, K./Laczko, F.: Migration, environment and development: new directions for research. International migration and development – continuing the dialogue: legal and policy perspectives. J. Chamie and L. Dall’Oglio (New York: Center for Migration Studies/ International Organisation for Migration: 235-252, 2008).

    Zetter, R.: Legal and Normative Frameworks. (Forced Migration Review 31: 62-63, 2008).

    Bogumil Terminski, Environmentally Induced Displacement. Theoretical Frameworks and Current Challenges, CEDEM Working Paper, University of Liege, 2012 http://www.cedem.ulg.ac.be/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/Environmentally-Induced-Displacement-Terminski-1.pdf

    Bogumil Terminski, Environmentally-Induced Displacement and Human Security, Geneva, 2012

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