Department of Culture and Learning

call for papers

NB: closed for paper abstract submissions

List of confirmed panels in open call

Panel title

Critical reflections on field work in Greenland

Conveners

Naimah Hussain & Mette Apollo Rasmussen

Panel abstract

This panel aims at discussing methodological challenges related to empirical research in Greenland of topics related to the Denmark-Greenland relation and the role of science in meeting the social, political, environmental and other challenges for Greenland. We invite contributions that explicitly discuss on methodological challenges related to conducting fieldwork related to this sensitive issue in Greenland. We are looking for studies conducted by both Greenlandic and Non-Greenlandic researcher sand we are especially interested in challenges related to work that involves an active engagement with the Greenlandic society.

The two main purposes of the panel are:

  1. to address the methodological implication of doing research in the remote and somewhat inaccessible settings of Greenland. It includes discussions of the challenges and opportunities of research in contexts where it at times is difficult to gain access and where acceptance from local communities are needed.
  2. to strengthen and highlight the relations between Greenland and Denmark in order to qualify relevant methodological discussions focusing on both a) initial research questions, b) conducting the research and c) knowledge sharing during and after field work with Greenlandic stakeholders.

Proposals are welcome from different research fields including, but not limited to, sociology, anthropology, political science and social science. Interdisciplinary research is also highly valued.

Papers are invited on topics related, but not limited to

  • Methodological, theoretical, and practical challenges that researchers face when they study and engage with the Greenlandic society
  • How fieldwork experiences contribute to relevant production of knowledge and reflexive interplay with local communities?
  • How critical reflections on methods support, engage with and highlight relevant issues in the Greenlandic society?
  • How language barriers between researchers and researched creates linguistic challenges during fieldwork are coped with?
  • How can the research process be developed to address and overcome the language barriers, and thus qualify the interplay between researcher and actors in the empirical field.

Panel title

Decolonizing Art and Research Practices in Greenland and Beyond

Conveners

Amalie Ambrosius Høgfeldt, Juno Berthelsen & Naja Dyrendom Graugaard

Panel abstract

This panel discusses the role of art and research in resisting Danish hegemony and decolonizing knowledge productions on Greenland, and the Arctic at large. Scholarly claims to scientific knowledge about Kalaallit lives have been intimately connected to Danish colonial interests and strategies. As part of this legacy, Indigenous stories, experiences, and knowledges are often silenced or co-opted in past and present narratives of Danish colonization in Greenland, revealing colonial continuities and forms of systemic whiteness. The 300th anniversary of Danish colonial rule calls for a revisioning and retelling of historical processes and future visions, from the bottom up.

In this light, this panel discusses the possibilities and challenges of research and art to expose systemic silences and colonial narratives, and what it takes to decolonize them? Does art offer novel practices for unsettling colonial relations? Can art and research be bridged to pave new pathways for alternative narratives?

The panel will host a debate and exchange between researchers and artists from Greenland and beyond to discuss the role of art in decolonization processes.

Panel title

Co-existence, conflicts and negotiations: The 18th Century Beginnings of Cross Cultural relations between Europeans and the Inuit of Greenland


Convenors

Marie Bønløkke MissunoPeter Andreas Toft & Rasmus Voss, Curator (Danish National Museum)


Panel abstract

18th century Greenland was the scene of the initial encounters between local Inuit, Danish/Norwegian colonists and European whalers. This panel focuses on how relations, conflicts and creative co-existence between these groups were rooted in culture, preceding knowledge, intentions and prejudice. The panel will also address how the clash between preconceived ideas and realities, in the form of new people, landscapes and cultural practices, resulted in negotiations, changing relations and strategies.
Today, places and people of these early encounters are vibrant symbols and cultural heritage resources used in literature and debate. Prominent examples range from Habakuk and Hans Egede to Nipisat and Taseralik. Many researchers play a part in activating knowledge of this period in exhibitions, newspapers, web-platforms and at heritage sites. We welcome papers which also discuss such activation of early encounters. How and why should encounters be activated? By who? What knowledge is relevant in Greenland? in Denmark? And what are the effects?


This open panel is hosted by the Activating Arctic Heritage project.
 

Panel title

Great Power Engagement in the North Atlantic, 1700s till the Present Day: International Systemic Drivers and Network Path-Dependencies

Conveners

Rasmus Gjedssø Bertelsen & Mariia Kobzeva

Panel abstract

The Kingdom of Denmark is divided between the Continental European Denmark, historically in a German sphere of influence, and the North Atlantic, historically in an Anglo-American sphere of influence. Great power conflict and engagement in the North Atlantic has historically and continue to put enormous strain on the cohesion of the Realm. It is therefore important for Denmark, the Faroe Islands and Greenland – as well as third parties – to understand historical and current great power dynamics and engagements in the North Atlantic.

The panels introduce Danish, Faroese and Greenlandic strategic learning from history for policymaking. The North Atlantic has been the object of British and French strategic interests since at least the 1700s showing geostrategic continuity with lessons for today. The Cold War shaped the North Atlantic with a heavy American footprint, but also especially Soviet economic, cultural and political engagement of Iceland and the Faroe Islands. Cold War networks continue to influence Russian and Chinese relations with Iceland as the hub of the North Atlantic. Russia remains economically engaged especially in North Atlantic marine economy. China is rapidly developing its political, scientific, economic and technological engagement. Great power engagement and competition in these very small or microstate polities is linked to individuals and individual projects.

Panel title

Greenland (de)securitizations

Conveners

Marc Jacobsen & Ulrik Pram Gad

Panel abstract

Does (de)securitization dynamics take particular forms when unfolding in or relating to the Arctic? And, within this region, do (de)securitization dynamics unfold in particular ways in the distinct post-colonial setting of the Danish Realm, with its peculiar constellation of sovereignty, identity, temporality, guilt etc.? Since its initial formulations as part of what has come to be known as 'the Copenhagen School' of security studies, Securitization Theory has been criticized, developed and applied across most regions of the worlds and across sectors. Recently, a cottage industry of 'Arctic securitization studies' have sprung up as part of increased attention in the International Relations discipline towards the Arctic. A few attempts have even been made to nail down the specificity of the Arctic region in terms of securitization. In parallel, quite a few case studies - coming out of Copenhagen - have applied aspects and variations of securitization theory in analyses of distinct episodes of international relations pivoting around Greenland - on the background of decades of slow motion decolonization in the shadow of superpower politics. Two panels discuss pre-circulated full draft chapters for a planned (English language) edited volume and articles for a (Danish language) special issue of Økonomi & Politik, which will, first, draw disparate case studies together to give a full picture of the security dynamics framing Greenland; second, characterize the specificity of security in the 'Danish' Arctic; and, third, possibly think through how these peculiarities make us think differently about the Copenhagen School.

Panel title

Greenland Exhibited and Collected: Museums and the Mediation of Colonial Knowledge

Conveners

Bart Pushaw/The Art of Nordic Colonialism: Writing Transcultural Art Histories

Panel abstract

Greenland’s visual and material culture face formidable challenges in the twenty-first- century museum. Haunted by the specter of ethnographic authenticity, Greenlandic objects have been collected, promoted, and exhibited as “artifact” more often than “art”. Still today, the country’s expressive culture remains scattered across disparate museums, archives, and private collections in multiple countries. As museums across the Global North wrestle with the colonial origins of their collections more publicly than ever before, it is indubitably urgent to redress the current state of collections of Greenlandic art and visual culture. This panel seeks to intervene into this discussion by sparking critical dialogue and debate surrounding the pasts, presents, and futures of Greenlandic material culture—by Inuit as well as non-Inuit makers—in museum settings. We invite papers in a range of formats, from traditional paper presentations to artistic interventions that may address the following questions:

  • How have museum collections functioned as repositories of colonial knowledge regarding Greenland?
  • What collection or exhibition practices shaped or continue to shape ideas of Greenlandic art and culture?
  • What conditions or problems characterize the current status of Greenlandic material culture in museums?
  • How do museums relate Greenlandic objects to local, regional (Arctic/Circumpolar), imperial, and/or international narratives? How might we envision a responsible or ethical curatorial practice?
  • How could “interventions” into existing museum spaces be imagined – and by and for whom would they be?

Panel title

Hvad kan vi lære af Grønland i det pædagogiske og sociale arbejde?

Conveners

Lene Mosegaard Søbjerg, Lise Jönsson Koumaditis & Bo Morthorst Rasmusen

Panel abstract

Grønland har i 2019 bedt Danmark om hjælp til løsning af deres sociale og pædagogiske udfordringer på børne- og familieområdet. Det er godt, hvis danske erfaringer på området kan afhjælpe udfordringer på Grønland, men er den danske socialfaglige og pædagogiske praksis så god og kulturfølsom, at den kan eksporteres? Der er udfordringer på Grønland, med der er også udfordringer på det sociale område i Danmark. Måske vi i stedet skulle stille spørgsmålene: Hvad kan vi lære af hinanden? Hvad kan Danmark lære af Grønland, og hvad kan vi lære af, om og med hinanden? Netværksanbringelser er et eksempel på et område, hvor Grønland har en lang uudforsket tradition, mens Danmark længe har talt om at anbringe flere udsatte børn i netværk, men hvor det halter med implementeringen. Grønland har også arbejdet målrettet med at bryde tabu omkring seksuelle overgreb og angriber temaet på en helt anden måde end Danmark. Dette er blot to eksempler, hvor de seneste 300 års forskning med fordel kan genlæses. Vi ønsker med dette panel at sætte en ny forskningsdagsorden og skabe grobund for nye forsknings- og udviklingssamarbejder, der beror på gensidig udveksling og læring mellem Grønland og Danmark.

Panelet vil kombinere praksiserfaringer med akademiske oplæg. Hensigten er at blive klogere på, hvordan vi kan anvende erfaringer og viden på tværs af Grønland og Danmark til at skabe bedre vilkår for anbragte børn.

Panelet indledes med et fagligt oplæg om erfaringer med netværksanbringelse på tværs af Grønland og Danmark, hvori der gives en grundlæggende introduktion til emnet. Derefter følger et oplæg om anbringelser i Grønland. Oplæggene danner grundlag for at invitere de to forskere samt repræsentanter fra kommuner og uddannelsesinstitutioner fra både Danmark og Grønland på podiet til en diskussion om, hvad de to lande kan lære af hinanden, og hvordan vi i fællesskab kan skabe bedre rammer for anbragte børn og unge. Alle interesserede inviteres til at deltage i diskussionen med kommentarer og indlæg.

Panel title

Imagining Independence in the Arctic – Postcolonial Politics of Comparison

Convener

Ulrik Pram Gad

Panel abstract

Tiny population. Huge territory. Extreme conditions. It is far from obvious where to find inspiration when Greenland aims for independence. Hence, a wide variety of im- and explicit comparisons in political debate, public policy, and scholarly analysis shape how Greenland imagines independence. Particularly, both the relevance and legitimacy of models and scarecrows vary across sectors: When debating what kind of polity, Greenland should be, the Danish ideal of a culturally homogenous nation/welfare state looms large - but alternative inspiration is frequently sought with indigenous peoples and constitutionally creative island states. Topographical and climatic challenge makes it almost imperative to look for infrastructure solutions elsewhere than in a tiny, flat, North European country. Kick-starting economic development pits Greenland in radically different competitive conditions in global markets for fish, tourists and mining investments. The panel presents the first analyses from a DFF Sapere Aude project studying how application, rejection and forgetting of categories for comparison closes off some futures, making others self-evident. The project aims to open up a new cross-disciplinary research agenda in nationalism studies on the politics of postcolonial comparison.

Panel title

Reinterpreting contemporary issues derived from past Japanese expansion to the Pan-Pacific region with insights gained from Greenland-Denmark post-colonial relations

Conveners

Naotaka Hayashi, University of Calgary & Minori Takahashi, Hokkaido University

Panel abstract

We apply insights derived from reexamining the political relations between Greenland and Denmark to reinterpret consequences of the Japanese diplomacy and expansion into the Pan-Pacific region from the mid 19th century, when Japan started full-scale modernization reformation. While Greenland has been granted the right to self-determination for a large part of its domestic affairs, the political imbalance with Denmark is still apparent in many aspects. The challenges facing Kalaallit (Inuit Greenlanders) include the formation of political identity toward Denmark, the ethical, yet sensitive reflection on past colonialism, and diplomatic policy-making as a non-nation. These challenges can resonate with issues of Japanese colonial territorial expansion, migration to Pan-Pacific countries, and post-WWII diplomacy, though social-political contexts differ. We examine how we can apply lessons learned from the Greenland-Denmark relations to cases outside Europe. For example, we argue that a parallel can be found between the stable and continuous US airbase operation in Thule with the Japanese government allowing the US military to maintain its bases in Okinawa (the southernmost area in Japan). Also, the political situation in which the Kalaallit are strengthening their ethnic identity against Danish influences is comparable to a recent cultural revitalization of the Ainu (indigenous people in the northernmost region of Japan, called Hokkaido). The nuanced relations between Aborigines and Coloureds in Australia can mirror the difficulties that half-Danish Greenlanders have for self-identification. More broadly, we welcome issues from other Pan-Pacific countries, such as Taiwan, to advance comparative studies of political/social bargaining.

Panel title

Straffe, lovgivning og magt i Grønland – før og nu

Conveners

Annemette Nyborg Lauritsen & Anette Storgaard

Panel abstract

Hensigten med dette panel er at diskutere retlige og menneskelige udfordringer ved frihedsberøvelse i Grønland i historisk og aktuelt perspektiv. I 2019 åbnede den første lukkede anstalt i Grønland. Anstalten ligger i Nuuk og har langt de fleste af de kendetegn, man forbinder med et lukket fængsel: ringmur, elektronisk overvågning, små adskilte enheder osv. Anstalten i Nuuk er indrettet med henblik på indespærring af grønlændere dømt for farlig kriminalitet. Nogle af disse skulle tidligere afsone i Danmark. Åbningen af den lukkede anstalt konstituerer et markant brud med den hidtidige (officielle) straffepraksis i Grønland, hvor anstaltsanbragte kunne gå på arbejde i lokalområdet og opretholde kontakten med deres pårørende. Etableringen af den særlige grønlandske straffepraksis og lovgivning har dybe rødder i det danske koloniprojekt og den efterfølgende afkoloniseringsproces. Den første kriminallov i Grønland fra 1954 blev indført i overgangen mellem kolonialisme og afkolonisering, og afveg på en række afgørende punkter fra den danske straffelov. Den gældende grønlandske kriminallov adskiller sig fortsat fra den danske straffelov på enkelte punkter, men sammen med etableringen af den lukkede anstalt afspejler den en gradvis tilnærmelse til de danske regler og praksis. Udviklingen i strafformer og lovgivning udspiller sig i en postkolonial kontekst, hvor justitsområdet (endnu) ikke er hjemtaget til Grønland, og det danske folketing derfor fortsat vedtager lovene, dog efter høring af Inatsisartut. Panelet diskuterer de aktuelle brydninger i den grønlandske straffe- og retspraksis i et historisk perspektiv

NB: This panel encourages interested authors to submit their abstract in Danish.

Panel title

Danmark – Greenland mining (after)lifes and legacies


Convenors

Lill Rastad Bjørst & Dag Avango


Panel abstract

Extractive industries represent a “new” contact zone in Greenland. Arctic lands have always been spaces of encounters. Studying these encounters reveals how encounters are fundamental to social histories, and according to Ortner (1999) what is at issue with encounters are “the ways in which power and meaning are deployed and negotiated, expressed and transformed” (1999: 17). Tsing (2015) asks us to listening to the “cacophony of troubled stories” (34) related to encounters – as an alternative to the mono-progress-time stories that is often presented and circulated. The arguments is that, stories of these encounters can reveal (and add) interesting insight into the complex industrialization of the Arctic, which engage Arctic studies scholars in these years. This panel will especially focus on the Greenlandic mining (after)lifes and legacies. In Greenland, as in many other places in the Arctic, mining issues center on a democratic imperative to include a variety of voices on the one hand and to facilitate a swift and business friendly environment for mining companies to the benefit of the regional economies. This predicament opens up a multitude of complex negotiations and encounters.
 

Further conference information

Important dates

  • 22 April 2020
    Deadline for panel proposals

  • 15 May 2020 
    Confirmation of accept of panel proposals 
     
  • 10 June 2020
    2nd call (for papers - to complete panels and free standing)
     
  • 17 August 2020
    Deadline for paper abstracts
     
  • 01 October 2020
    Confirmation of accept of papers
     
  • 18 December 2020
    Reconfirmation of panels
     
  • 7 January 2020
    Online warm-up event for panel convenors
     
  • 01 May 2021
    Deadline for full paper drafts
    Deadline for participant registration
     
  • 01 June 2021
    Confirmation of conference programme
     
  • 09-11 June 2021
    Conference
     
  • 16 August 2021
    Deadline for (select) revised papers for publication