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Arcus Center Invites Proposals for 2014 Conference “WITH/OUT – ¿BORDERS?”

KALAMAZOO, Mich. [Oct. 23, 2013]: Kalamazoo College’s Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership (ACSJL) invites proposals for papers, workshops, roundtables, and think-tanks for “WITH/OUT – ¿BORDERS?” a conference to be held September 25-28, 2014 on the Kalamazoo College campus—including in the new home of the ACSJL currently under construction.

The deadline for submitting 150-word proposals is Jan. 15, 2014. Send entries to Karla.Aquilar@kzoo.edu. Entries selected for the conference will be notified by Feb. 15, 2014. For more information, email Arcus.Center@kzoo.edu or visit https://reason.kzoo.edu/csjl/withoutborders.

“Conference-goers will explore the very notion of borders both physical and theoretical,” said ACSJL Academic Director Lisa Brock, Ph.D. “Borders and boundaries of all kinds, whether intersectional, cartographical, ideological, political, cultural, and social, will be deconstructed.”

Confirmed conference speakers include award winning performance artist Guillermo Gomez Pena, 2011 National Book Award poetry winner Nikky Finney, artist Ashley Hunt, scholar Saree Makdisi, musician Ugochi, and scientist Jon Beckwith.

According to Brock, the 2014 WITH/OUT – ¿BORDERS conference aims to foster both theoretical discussion and practical problem-solving around key questions such as how individuals and groups can:

  • cross academic borders and break down organizational silos in order to embrace emerging disciplines and create interdisciplinary spaces;
  • remove or open seemingly fixed national and military borders such as the U.S.-Mexico border or the conflict between Palestinian and Israeli territories;
  • span cultural borders such as race, gender, religion, and sexual orientation; and
  • connect and combine historically separate social justice issues and work in solidarity across social justice movements.

“We are interested in creating conversations on emerging epistemologies, radical geographies, critical solidarities, and transgressive practices that transcend disciplinary and academic/activist borders,” said Brock. “We want conference attendees to show us how they would re-map the world—with and without borders.”

WITH/OUT – ¿BORDERS? builds on the ACSJL’s successful spring 2013 Global Prize for Collaborative Social Justice Leadership that drew more than 100 entries from around the United States and 22 other countries, and culminated in the awarding of three global prizes and one regional prize.

The Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership (www.kzoo.edu/socialjustice) was launched in 2009 with support from the Arcus Foundation (www.arcusfoundation.org), including a $23 million endowment grant in January 2012. Supporting Kalamazoo College’s mission to prepare its graduates to better understand, live successfully within, and provide enlightened leadership to a richly diverse and increasingly complex world, the ACSJL will develop new leaders and sustain existing leaders in the field of human rights and social justice.

Kalamazoo College (www.kzoo.edu), founded in Kalamazoo, Mich., in 1833, is a nationally recognized liberal arts college and the creator of the K-Plan that emphasizes rigorous scholarship, experiential learning, leadership development, and international and intercultural engagement. Kalamazoo College does more in four years so students can do more in a lifetime.

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