Affections/Afflictions/Afterlives. SOYUZ Symposium (March 23-24, 2012)

Conference Program

Conference location and hotel information
Related Photography Exhibit

The 2012 symposium will ponder the sentiments, the failures, and the successes around making do with those ongoing, productive connections that are afforded by infrastructures and procedures conceived during (or in response to) socialism.  

How to speak about what lives “after” without abjecting the “remains”?  Topical foci might draw upon themes current in the humanities and social sciences: biopolitics and biopowers (for instance, bricolage in ways of dealing with affliction, means of training the body, etc.); knowledge-making or sentiment-forming (e.g. recombination of religious, ethnic-folk, scientific, poetic ideologies and resources); material and narrative repurposing; modes of redistribution or (re)portioning of entitlements.

The 2012 symposium will feature a keynote address by Judith Farquhar, Max Palevsky Professor of Anthropology and of Social Sciences and Chair, Department of Anthropology, University of Chicago.

The 2012 conference organizing committee includes University of Michigan anthropologists working across regions where socialism has figured in important ways: Kelly Askew (Tanzania), Anya Bernstein (Buryatia), Krisztina Fehervary (Hungary), Alaina Lemon (Russia, Romani diaspora), Erik Meuggler (China), Damani Partridge (Germany).

Sponsors: U-M’s Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies; African Studies Center; Center for Chinese Studies; Copernicus Endowment; Department of Anthropology; Institute for the Humanities; International Institute; College of Literature, Science, and the Arts; Office of the Vice President for Research; and Weiser Center for Europe and Eurasia.

View the 2012 Call for Papers (deadline has passed)


SOYUZ, the Post-Communist Cultural Studies Interest group, has convened a symposium annually since 1991, and it is an intimate forum where scholars (from graduate students to senior faculty) from across the world can exchange ideas. SOYUZ began in 1991 as a regionally focused group responding to the fall of the Soviet and socialist states. Since then, it has broadened to include scholars working in any region touched by socialism, by the oppositions of socialism to capitalism, or by those phenomena formerly known as “post-socialist.” 
SOYUZ website