22. February 2023

CfP Special Issue: Indentured Bodies / Embodiments of Indenture (Journal of Indentureship and its Legacies) CfP Special Issue: Indentured Bodies / Embodiments of Indenture

Selected contributions will be published open access in the Journal of Indentureship and its Legacies (Pluto Journals) in the special issue ‘Indentured Bodies / Embodiments of Indenture’ in December 2024, edited by Sinah Kloß and Jennifer Leetsch.

Call for Papers Special Issue: Indentured Bodies / Embodiments of Indenture (Journal of Indentureship and its Legacies)
Call for Papers Special Issue: Indentured Bodies / Embodiments of Indenture (Journal of Indentureship and its Legacies) © BCDSS
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This special issue will explore bodies and embodiment in the context of indentureship by focusing on the bodily experiences of indentured labourers (and other relevant social actors) and their influence on social contexts, interactions and relations of dependency. Its objective is to examine bodies, embodied experiences and their legacies from an interdisciplinary perspective – including history, literary and cultural studies, philosophy, social and cultural anthropology, art history and archaeology – to gain new and innovative insights on this under- researched topic in indentureship studies. We especially welcome contributions that critically reflect on mind-body dualisms, that re-consider indentured bodies and embodied experiences of indentureship from a processual and performative perspective on bodies, and that contextualize these  experiences from a historical perspective, in cultural performances and representations.

Among the questions to be discussed in this special issue are:

  • What kinds of bodies have been relevant during indentureship with regard to social hierarchy and power  relations? In what ways have ‘other’, e.g. more-than-human, bodies been of significance in this context?
  • How do (historical) representations and transformations of indentured bodies reveal symmetrical and  asymmetrical dependencies among the various social actors involved in systems of indentureship?
  • How can we address the historical (dis)continuities between the fungibility of Black enslaved bodies and that of indentured bodies?
  • To what extent did colonial anthropometric ideas and practices affect the recruitment of indentured  labourers?
  • How can we understand the relationship of the indentured body, neither property nor allowed to own property, to land, geography and the environment?
  • In which ways can we interlink discussions of humanism and animality/animalization within the discursive and philosophical frames opened up by the indentured worker’s body?
  • In what ways have bodies memorized experiences of indentureship? How have these experiences been  visualized and materialized in and on bodies, and in and on other media?
  • What possibilities are offered by literary, visual and sensory engagements with the materialities of  embodiments – how do aesthetics relate to affects, ethics, politics?
  • Are there bodily practices that reveal characteristics of post-memory (Hirsch 2012) – intergenerationally  transmitted trauma – in contemporary post-indentureship societies?
  • How do gender, sexuality and desire factor into our discussion of bodies of indenture?

Please send your abstracts (500 words) by March 31, 2023 to s.kloss@uni-bonn.de and jleetsch@uni-bonn.de. Selected full-length articles (5000-7000 words), photo essays and creative texts (up to 2500 words), and book  reviews (1200-1500 words) will have to be submitted to the editors for peer review by November 30, 2023.

For the full call, click here.

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