Einladung – Konferenz: Global Dimensions of Racism in the Modern World, 12.-14.07.2007, Heidelberg

Curt Engelhorn Chair of American History, Department of History, University of Heidelberg
Zeit: 12.07.2007-14.07.2007
Ort: Heidelberg Center for American Studies, Hauptstraße 120, 69117 Heidelberg
Global Dimensions of Racism in the Modern World: Comparative and Transnational Perspectives
The conference seeks to reexamine major problems in the historiography of racism and aims to introduce fresh perspectives and methodological innovations that help us to comprehend how notions of „race“ and racism created, shaped, and legitimized systems of domination. Taking seriously the global nature of such systems forces us to examine racist attitudes and practices in different times and places under different circumstances. Examining the international dimensions of racism also means going beyond traditional black/white paradigms and approaches that focus solely on Europe or the United States. If taken seriously, this global approach poses a number of questions. How did racism in Middle Eastern and Asian countries differ from Western forms of color-coded discrimination and exploitation? Did Western notions of race influence non-Western peoples, and if so, how were such models adapted to different contexts?
Methodologically, probing the global nature of racism necessarily requires a combination of comparative, transnational, and interdisciplinary perspectives. The conference will reexamine cross-national comparative approaches concerning racism and slavery as well as the history of racist regimes in South Africa and the United States. It will also explore other forms of racist domination, particularly imperialism and colonialism. Transnational Perspectives will further contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of both the emergence of racism in the modern world and how it operated in different cultures. In recent years, many historians have argued that the histories of nation states cannot be properly understood without acknowledging the global system of transnational entanglements and processes of cultural exchange in which these countries existed. Given the ubiquity of racism in the modern world, it is important to examine how racism in one country or region affected racist ideas and practices in other areas of the world. In the case of European Imperialism, we can benefit from transnational approaches by exploring how racism on the periphery affected the center and vice versa. Finally, encouraging interdisciplinary dialogue among race scholars, the conference aims to critically discuss different methodological and thematic foci, which are crucial to the holistic approach the conference intends to cultivate.
Thursday, July 12, 2007
Arrival and Registration
Welcoming Remarks
Prof. Dr. Detlef Junker (Director, Heidelberg Center for American
Prof. Dr. Manfred Berg (Curt Engelhorn Professor of American History)
Panel 1: Racism and Slavery
Chair: Manfred Berg (University of Heidelberg)
Michael Zeuske (University of Cologne)
Slavery, Postemancipation and the Construction of Race: The Case of Cuba, 1800-1900
Peter Kolchin (University of Delaware)
Revisiting Some Historical Debates on Slavery and Race
Jennifer L. Morgan (New York University)
Racial Thinking and Colonial Numeracy: Gender and the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade
Keynote Address
Frank Dikötter (University of London/University of Hong Kong)
The Racialization of the Globe: Historical Perspectives
Friday, July 13, 2007
Panel 2: Racism and Colonialism
Chair: Dirk Moses (University of Sydney)
Wolfgang Seifert (University of Heidelberg)
Japan’s Policy of Assimilation in Korea and the Problem of Racism, 1910-1945
Andreas Eckert (Humboldt University of Berlin)
Racism and Colonial Power in Cameroon
Heinz-Dietrich Löwe (University of Heidelberg)
A Family of Peoples: „Kulturtregerstvo“ or Racism? Russia’s Domestic Other
Panel 3: Transnational Racial Ideologies
Chair: Simon Wendt (University of Heidelberg)
Claudia Bruns (University of Hildesheim)
Towards a Transatlantic History of Racism: Interrelations of Colonial Racism and German Anti-Semitism
John David Smith (University of North Carolina at Charlotte)
„I would like to study some Problems of Heredity“: Anthropologist Felix von Luschan’s Trip to America, 1914-1915
Dirk Moses (University of Sydney)
Racism in Australia (and Modernity) in the Age of the „War on Terror“
Panel 4: Race, Caste, and Class
Chair: Jennifer L. Morgan (New York University)
Harald Fischer-Tiné (Jacobs University of Bremen)
Hierarchies of Punishment in Colonial India: European Convicts and the Racial Dividend, 1860-1890
Gita Dharampal-Frick (University of Heidelberg)
Interrogating Caste and Race in South Asia
Urs Matthias Zachmann (University of Munich)
Race without Supremacy: Racism as a Counter-narrative in the Political Discourse and Practice of late Meiji Japan, 1890-1912
Saturday, July 14, 2007
Panel 5: Racism, Nationalism, and Imperialism
Chair: Gotelind Müller-Saini (University of Heidelberg)
Paul A. Kramer (Johns Hopkins University)
Imperial Reconstructions: Racial Regimes and U. S. Globality in the Long 20th Century
Christian Geulen (University of Koblenz)
Culture’s Shadow: The Story of „Race“ in the Long 20th Century
Christoph Marx (University of Essen)
Hendrik Verwoerd’s Long March to Apartheid: Nationalism and Racism in South Africa
Panel 6: Race and Racism in Asia and the Near East
Chair: John David Smith (University of North Carolina at Charlotte)
Benjamin Braude (Boston College)
How Racism Arose in Europe and Why It Did Not in the Near East
Gotelind Müller-Saini (University of Heidelberg)
Are We „Yellow“? And Who Is „Us“? China’s Problems with Glocalizing the Concept of „Race“ (around 1900)
Panel 7: Racism and Genocide
Chair: Boris Barth (University of Konstanz)
Dominik Schaller (University of Bern)
Ethnicity, Racism, and Genocide in Rwanda: A Transnational Perspective
Roundtable Discussion
With final comments by
Manfred Berg (University of Heidelberg)
Boris Barth (University of Konstanz)
Simon Wendt
Universität Heidelberg, Historisches Seminar
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