Call for Papers Closed – Registration Open

AFTER SLAVERY? LABOUR AND MIGRATION IN THE POST-EMANCIPATION WORLD, A Two Day Conference at the University of Leeds on Monday 27 and Tuesday 28 June 2016.

The call for papers for this event has now closed, however registration is now open.

The conference seeks to explore the emergence of global patterns of labour and migration in the post-emancipation world in ways that move beyond nineteenth century constructions of ‘slavery’ and ‘freedom’ and look instead at the diverse, nuanced and often ambivalent experiences over time and space. It seeks to break down unhelpful assumptions about ‘active’ and ‘passive’ migration, and ‘free’ and ‘unfree’ labour in order to describe the uneven, ambivalent, but extremely important ways in which labourers and migrants exerted their own agency, asserted their own identities and aspirations, and shaped their own individual and collective outcomes, even in the face of various forms of coercion and exploitation. By bringing together scholars of labour and migration from various disciplinary backgrounds, and regional and chronological specialisms, it aims to open up comparative perspectives and productive conversations that move beyond dominant colonial and post-colonial narratives to explore diverse experiences of labour migration from a range of disciplinary, theoretical and subaltern perspectives.

Papers at the conference will deal with the issues of agency among labour migrants, as well as the theoretical and conceptual problems involved in the study of labour and migration in both historical and contemporary contexts. Key themes include: lived experiences and quotidian encounters; agency, identity and social mobility; government regulation, legislation and formal and informal controls; gender, family and domestic relations; patterns of migration, re-migration and return; colonial and post-colonial debates; conceptual and theoretical issues around categories of labour migration etc. If you would like to attend, please contact Dr Andrea Major on

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