News from the African/African American Studies department

Black Studies Fall Conference - Call for Papers

January 21, 2016 at 1:54 pm

Black Resistance in the Americas: Slavery and its Aftermath

On October 14-15, 2016, the Department of Black Studies, University of Missouri, Columbia campus, will host its annual Black Studies Fall Conference to explore the theme of Black Resistance in the Americas: Slavery and its Aftermath. Following up on the student protests against racism in 2015 at the University of Missouri that generated international media attention, the conference is focused on developing discussions over the origins and nature of black resistance and its impact on the lives of people of color and society as a whole. The conference will be an international gathering of scholars, activists, and students who will explore the factors of both historical and contemporary black resistance in the Americas, and reflect on the approaches for addressing the concerns of contemporary social justice movements against racial inequality. 

Discussion Topics
Any of the following topics may be presented within the framework of resistance for discussion at the conference:  •    Slave Resistance and Culture/Identity Formation
•    Race, Nationalism, Politics, and Activism
•    Gender, Feminism, and Masculinity
•    Religion and Decolonization
•    Economics, Business, and Entrepreneurship
•    Language, Literature, Performing Arts, and Sportsmanship

These topics are some of the mechanisms that people of African descent have used to resist bondage, domination, disempowerment, inequality, and injustices resulting from their encounters with the West, from colonization to forced migration to the Americas. In this light, the conference is aimed at delineating the specific concerns of black communities. Presenters will explore strategies that can contribute to the development of more effective approaches to alleviate the socioeconomic and political problems that have continued to stunt the development of black communities and provoke black resistance.

Publication of selected papers in a Black Studies anthology will be considered following the conference, and presenters should be prepared to submit a completed paper upon request. 

Submission Guidelines
In keeping with the tradition of Black Studies, abstracts are welcome from various disciplines, however, they should be related to the overall conference theme, and must be guided by the interdisciplinary perspective. Both papers and panels are invited for consideration. Students are also specially invited to propose individual papers, panels, and poster presentations. Please submit an abstract in PDF, Doc, or TXT format of no more than 125 words for individual papers and 250 words for panels by Thursday, March 31, 2016, to be considered for the conference. Abstracts should be submitted to Selected participants will be notified by email on Saturday, April 30, 2016.

The titles for individual papers and for panels should be no longer than 70 characters, and we reserve the right to edit. Panels must be at least four persons and no more than five persons, with a named panel chair. If special equipment is required, please indicate this on the submission for papers or panels.

Film presentations are welcome and sessions will be arranged for these presentations. Special sessions will also be arranged for students to facilitate networking and entrance to graduate school. Please submit any questions and concerns to the conference chair at