CFP: Local Memory, Global Ethics, Justice: The Politics of Historical Dialogue in Contemporary Society

The Alliance for Historical Dialogue and Accountability (AHDA) at Columbia University’s Institute for the Study of Human Rights will hold its first annual conference in New York City, December 11-14, 2012. The conference will be co-hosted by the Guantanamo Public Memory Project, and will also feature the Guantanamo Public Memory Projects’ first traveling exhibit and digital media as a shared international challenge in historical dialogue.

We seek to explore the genealogy of the discipline of historical dialogue as well as research emanating from it: how do the memory and history of past violence evolve over time, and how do they influence a given society in the present day? What is the relationship of advocacy to knowledge production and the relationship between history, memory, and contemporary society? What is the relationship of historical truth to testimonies in truth commissions, and how do truth commissions construct historical truth? How can the tensions that exist between dialogue and accountability be understood, addressed or reconceived? In what ways can one compare historical narratives in post (identity) conflict to post authoritarian regimes? What is the role of subjects such as gender, religion, human being and citizen in understanding historical narrative, memory, dialogue and accountability? Finally, the conference seeks to be a space of interaction and the exchange of ideas between scholars and practitioners who often do not have the opportunity to collaborate, and we welcome papers that address this divide or reach across these boundaries.

The deadline for proposals is August 30, 2012.

Proposals for individual papers, panels, roundtable discussions and digital media presentations will be considered. All proposals should include a 300-500 word abstract, as well as your name, contact information and a brief bio. Proposals can be submitted electronically via the AHDA website, or by e-mailing If you have any questions, please contact the AHDA program director, Ariella Lang, at Limited travel and lodging funds are available; applications for funding will be made available upon acceptance of your submission.