Kinship, Knowledge, and Migration

October 5 - 8, 2017
Panels Series at the Annual Conference of the German Studies Association in Atlanta, GA

The German Historical Institute in Washington, DC (GHI), is organizing a panel series on the nexus of kinship, knowledge, and migration for the 2017 Annual Conference of the German Studies Association, to be held October 5-8, 2017, in Atlanta, Georgia. 

We invite proposals for presentations that address the intersection of kinship, knowledge, and migration in any time period. We are particularly interested in the question of how knowledge interacted with kin networks and how such networks were produced and transformed by migration processes. Presentations that explicitly reflect on sources, theoretical frameworks, and methodological approaches will be especially welcome. 

Possible topics include:

  • migrant families or kith and kin as knowledge networks: relationships between generations; gender issues; the roles of children as go-betweens and as conveyors, translators, and producers of knowledge in migration and integration processes;
  • knowledge distribution: personal networks, institutions, and organizations dealing with knowledge and migrants of different ages (schools, churches, emigration associations); sources of knowledge production and circulation (migrant letters, , photographs and other images, advice literature, newspapers, textbooks and children’s literature, other kinds of artifacts);
  • families as preservers of traditional social and cultural knowledge; strategies of inheriting or acquiring cultural, social, and economic capital in processes of migration; knowledge as a substitute for devalued cultural capital and the dispositions of habitus;
  • knowledge transfer and kinship in connection with forced migration; experiences and emotions while on the move; coping strategies and the importance of certain kinds of knowledge in long periods of uncertainty; becoming adults without family support or knowing one’s final destination; sources of resilience. 

Please send a brief CV and a proposal of no more than 300 words by December 15, 2016, to Susanne Fabricius (fabricius@ghi-dc.org). Proposals for complete panels are preferred and should include 3 papers, a moderator, and a commentator (if necessary, we can help find moderators and commentators). The panels will be organized and coordinated by Simone Lässig/GHI Washington and Swen Steinberg/TU Dresden. 

The GHI will provide lump sum travel grants to successful applicants from Europe (1,400 Euro per participant) and North America (up to USD 750).