Call For Papers

Call For Papers: Solidarity and Resistance: Toward Asian American Commitment to Fierce Alliances

2018 Association for Asian American Studies 38th Conference
March 29-31, 2018, San Francisco, California

Submissions due by: Monday, October 2nd, 2017

Remember: You MUST be a current and active AAAS member of the calendar year in which you are submitting your proposal (so your membership must be active for the calendar year of 2017 in order to submit a proposal for 2018).

Please note that new memberships default to the next calendar year, as they do not officially start until January. You will not be able to submit proposals for the 2018 conference (as membership must be current for the calendar year in which you submit) unless you specifically request that your new membership starts for the year of 2017. New memberships have a 3-5 day turnaround; please do not renew or request a new membership right before the proposal submission deadline as you will not receive your membership information in time.

You will need your email address and AAAS ID number in order to log in to submit your proposal. Please note that we cannot accommodate any ID number requests 48 hours prior to the proposal submission deadline.


Solidarity and Resistance: Toward Asian American Commitment to Fierce Alliances
Deadline for submissions: October 2, 2017

Recognizing resonances with the Chinese Exclusion Act (1882), the incarceration of Japanese Americans during WWII, and the Islamophobia and racial profiling of Muslim Americans following 9/11, the AAAS Board of Directors condemned President Trump’s Executive Order 13769, which banned nationals from seven Muslim-majority countries from entry into the U.S. In alignment with historical Asian American resistance to injustice, this call builds on the board’s condemnation of what it identifies as the order’s “overt anti-refugee, anti-Muslim, and anti-immigrant agenda” (February 4, 2017). In response to that discriminatory executive order as well as to recent legislation in Tennessee restrictive of the rights of LGBT individuals, the AAAS has decided at significant expense to the organization to move its 2018 annual meeting to San Francisco, a sanctuary city that has openly supported same-sex marriage since 2004, has long been a stronghold of LGBTQ activism, is one of the epicenters of the Black Lives Matter movement, and is now standing in support of immigrant rights.

The San Francisco Bay Area’s significance in the context of solidarity, resistance, and fierce alliances is deep and broad, and encompasses the origins of Asian American studies and ethnic studies in the 1968 student strikes, and the Asian American and Third World Liberation Front movements at San Francisco State College and UC Berkeley. 2018 marks the 50th anniversary of those momentous uprisings and demonstrations of solidarity, and thus AAAS finds it fitting to honor the place in which fierce alliances between people of color, queer folks, women, labor activists, and others have shifted political and social realities far outside the Bay Area’s borders.

Inspired by historical and current activism in the Bay Area, the 2018 AAAS conference program asks: “What is the responsibility of Asian Americans to move beyond safe and compliant citizenship to assert themselves socially and politically to advocate against racial and cultural injustices that may not directly affect them?” Given the history of the Third World Liberation Front, this conference seeks to address the relationships between Asian Americans with other communities; for example, what is the role of Asian Americans in the Black Lives Matter movement? How have Asian Americans worked to counter anti-Muslim discourses? How has the AAAS’s historic 2013 support of the academic boycott of Israel translated into visible activism for Palestinian rights?​

This conference call asks how we can maintain solidarity, resistance, and fierce alliances in our research and teaching as well as in our activism. Fierce solidarity can manifest in diverse ways: joining protest rallies; advocating for causes with elected officials; crafting socially just policies; joining boycott movements; holding a teach-in; providing legal help to individuals unjustly targeted by the state; creating safe space in the classroom where dialogues and collaborations across borders can take place; challenging academic institutions to live up to promises of social justice and diversity in student admissions and faculty hiring, tenure, and promotion; and through teaching and scholarship on these issues. We invite papers and panel proposals from scholars and activists that explore the complex spectrum spanning compliant and fierce action.