Encountering the Other in Wartime. The Great War as an intercultural moment?

Encountering the Other in Wartime. The Great War as an intercultural moment?

International Society for First World War Studies
DHIP, Cité Nationale de l’Histoire et de l’Immigration
Vom - Bis
26.09.2013 - 27.09.2013
Elisa Marcobelli

After very successful conferences in Lyon, Oxford, Dublin, Washington D.C., London, and Innsbruck, the International Society for First World War Studies is pleased to organise its seventh conference in Paris on 26-27 September 2013. The German Historical Institute in Paris, The University of Birmingham (UK), and the Cité Nationale de l’Histoire de l’Immigration are supporting this event.

Encountering the Other in Wartime: The Great War as an intercultural moment?

Up to the present day, the multinational nature of the First World War has mainly been conceptualised as the interstate confrontation of major allied powers. The Other is first and foremost the enemy; militarily and culturally the opposition. However, the Great War was also a time of unprecedented intermingling and circulation within the coalitions. Metropolitan and colonial soldiers, civilian workers, refugees and displaced persons left their familiar frame of reference by the millions. The conflict thus also constituted a change of scene for good or bad, a confrontation with social and cultural otherness, with different landscapes, at all scales for the belligerent societies (empires, nation states, local communities). How were the necessary movements conceptualised and organized in the logic of the multinational conflict? What forms did contacts between people of different origins take when they were confronted by the war? How were they experienced? How does the idea of belonging to a community, crucial to recent research on combat endurance, fit into the intercultural logic at all scales? To what extent did constructions of identity which feed on the perception of the other, evolve as such contacts occurred? How were they represented? Finally, what was the heritage of these contacts in the medium or long term?

In this perspective, transnational and comparative approaches are encouraged.

Papers might consider the following aspects:

-Military and operational issues (coalition warfare, multinational armies, colonial troops, mixed regiments)
-Imperial and colonial frameworks (race-thinking, contingents…)
-The experience of contact and interculturality
-The confrontation of different communities (age, gender, social class, regional origins, national identities, urban or rural origins…)
-Perceptions of otherness and their categorisation
-Nostalgia and uprootings
-Communitarianism, segregation

We wish to continue the tradition of bringing together current researchers both from among graduate students and established academics around new research. It is hoped that this conference will contribute to the comparative and interdisciplinary study of the Great War and help foster international collaboration and exchanges between different generations of scholars from humanities and social sciences.

In order to maximise discussion time, conference papers will be circulated prior to the conference. Thematic sessions will discuss the papers. The panellists will have time to reply before the debate is opened to the audience. The working languages will be English and French, with simultaneous interpreting available for those who need it (to be confirmed). Like the previous conferences, a selection of papers will be published.

Applicants are asked to submit before 30th January 2013 a 300-word-abstract (in English or French) of the proposed paper and a curriculum vitae on our conference platform
http://isfwws2013.sciencesconf.org/?lang=en :

1-Create an account on the website by clicking on « Registration » at the left and then « I do not have an account ».

2-Fill in the form, click on « register » and then activate the account when you receive the confirmation email.

3-Click on « Submissions » in the left-hand column and then « Submit an abstract »

4-When you reach the page for paper submission, please remember to submit your CV as « supplemetary information ».

We will notify applicants whether their papers have been accepted by 1st March 2013.

Successful applicants must be prepared to submit a paper of no longer than 8,000 words by June 1st 2013.

The conference will be held at the Cité nationale de l’Histoire de l’Immigration (Paris 12ème) and German Historical Institute (Paris 3ème). We intend to provide limited assistance towards travel and accomodation expenses for those researchers whose institutions do not offer conference funding.

For further information, please contact firstworldwarstudies@ehess.fr

Conference team :

Emmanuelle Cronier (Centre for War Studies, University of Birmingham).

Victor Demiaux (EHESS Paris/IEP Lille).

Franziska Heimburger (EHESS Paris).

Elisa Marcobelli (DHI Paris/EHESS Paris).

Claire Morelon : (IEP Paris/University of Birmingham).

Clémentine Vidal-Naquet (EHESS Paris).



International Society for First World War Studies