How the experience of migration has informed the work of writers in Greater Manchester from 1960 to the present.
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9 - 12 September 2009

Lancaster University, and the Whitworth Gallery, Manchester, UK


Glocal Imaginaries posterGLOCAL IMAGINARIES is the closing conference of the AHRC-funded research project 'Moving Manchester: How the experience of migration has informed the work of writers in Greater Manchester from 1960 to the present'. The increasingly complex relationship between the local and the global has emerged as one of the defining characteristics of contemporary Manchester writing and it is also one that, we trust, will be of topical concern to researchers and writers throughout the world and across a wide range of disciplines.

With an interest in both the material and imaginative (re) configuration of location, mobility and migration in the early twenty-first century, the conference invites papers from colleagues working in the fields of geography, sociology, anthropology, politics, linguistics and history, as well as literature and creative writing, and the conference will be 'streamed' in such a way that delegates are able to participate either within, or across, disciplines. Inasmuch as the 'Moving Manchester' project itself has focused upon the work of contemporary writers, literature and the creative arts will be an integral feature of the conference programme and culminate in a 'creative arts' day in Manchester (Saturday 12 September) which will feature readings, performances and an exhibition.

The conference is in the process of being advertised internationally and keynote speakers are as follows:

  • Professor Mieke Bal, Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences Professor, University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands .
    Paper title: 'On the Move: Mediating Intimacy in the Glocal World'
  • Professor Roger Bromley, Professor of International Cultural Studies, University of Nottingham, UK.
    Paper title: ' Undesirable and Placeless: Finding a Political Space for the Displaced in a Cinema of Destitution'
  • Professor Shirley Chew, Emeritus Professor of Commonwealth and Postcolonial Literature, University of Leeds, UK .
    Paper title
    : 'Chinese Migrant Writing'
  • Professor David L.Eng, Professor of English and Comparative Literature, University of Pennsylvania, USA .
    Paper title: 'The Queer Space of China'
  • Dr Gayatri Gopinath, Assistant Professor of Women's Studies, University of California, Davis, USA.
    Paper title: 'Queer Regions: Re-visioning Space and Sexuality in Transnational Time'
  • Dr Ranjana Khanna, Margaret Taylor Smith Director of Women's Studies and Professor of English and Women's Studies, Duke University, USA.
    Paper title: 'Isaac Julien: Mobility, "Unbelonging" and Asylum'
  • Professor Susheila Nasta, Chair in Modern Literature, The Open University, UK
    Paper title:'South Asian Bloomsbury and the Evolution of Global Modernities'
  • Dr James Procter, Reader in Modern English and Postcolonial Literature,The University of Newcastle, UK .
    Paper title
    : 'The Odyssean Audience?'
  • Professsor John Thieme, Visiting Professor in Literature, University of East Anglia, UK .
    Paper title
    : 'Glocalized Trajectories in the Writing of Amitav Ghosh'
  • Professor John Urry, Distinguished Professor of Sociology and Director of the Centre for Mobilities Research, Lancaster University, UK
    Paper title: 'Mobility and People'
  • Professor Ruth Wodak, Distinguished Professor of Discourse Studies, Lancaster University, UK
    Paper title: 'Global, local or glocal identities? The many functions of multilingualism in the EU-rope'

Conference strands are expected to include: The Glocal City (Darien Rozentals); Re-Writing Space and Place ( Darien Rozentals); Queer G/localities (Jackie Stacey); G/local Mobilities (Allison Hui); G/local Diasporas (Lindsey Moore); G/local Economies (Sondra Cuban); Discourses of the G/local (Bethan Benwell); Moving Stories: Rewriting Space and Place; (Shirley Chew); Virtual Diasporas (Graham Meikle), Migration and Diaspora (Maggie O'Neill), The Black Atlantic (Alan Rice) and Gendering Diasporas (Anne-Marie Fortier).

The conference will begin at 4pm on Wednesday 9 September and end at 5pm on Saturday 12 September with an additional evening's entertainment in Manchester for those able to attend. We are expecting this event to attract upto 300 delegates and accommodation and full conference facilities will be provided. This will include transport to and from Manchester on Saturday 12 September.


Conference update

We are delighted to report that we have received over 200 proposed papers from 35 countries and the stream leaders / conference organising committee are currently making their final selections. We expect to let all proposers know whether their paper has been accepted before the Easter vacation (Thursday 9 April 2009) and participants will also be contacted by their own stream leader in due course.

Please note that on-line registration for the conference will become available in week beginning 4 May.

Many thanks to all those of you who have submitted papers and / or expressed interest in the conference -- it promises to be a truly international event!

N.B. Each paper submission is individually acknowledged by email. Should you fail to receive an acknowledgement within one week of submission please contact the conference administrator, Mrs Jo McVicker (


Contact details

Professor Lynne Pearce, Department of English & Creative Writing, Lancaster University

Mrs Jo McVicker, Project Administrator, 'Moving Manchester'

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