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Austerity, Resistance and Emergent Imaginaries workshop – call for PhD applications

Call for applications for a free PhD and postdoctoral workshop Austerity, Resistance and Emergent Imaginaries: From occupied squares to the parliament and the neighbourhood

10 October 2017

Host: Centre of Ideology and Discourse Analysis, Department of Government, University of Essex, Colchester, UK

Date: 22 November 2017

Keynote speakers: Marina Prentoulis (University of East Anglia) Lasse Thomassen (Queen Mary University of London), Steven Griggs (De Montfort University Leicester) Lazaros Karaliotas (University of Glasgow), Jason Glynos (University of Essex), David Howarth (University of Essex) and Peter North (University of Liverpool).

Austerity, both as a concept as well as a lived experience, has been at the epicentre of the political, economic and social landscape in Europe and around the globe for many years.

Whether a permanent condition or an ephemeral regime, austerity politics today defines and shapes the societies we live in. How are we to characterise austerity and the political practices stemming from it? Where did this regime of practices come from? How and why has it been normalised so rapidly?

Nevertheless, despite their normalisation, austerity politics have time and again been contested by political struggles and resistances from several actors seeking to articulate counter-austerity discourses. Beginning with the squares’ movements as well as other forms of trans-local collective action, we witness the emergence of several grassroots networks that are challenging austerity and trace alternative ways of collectively organising everyday life.

At the same time, the rise of municipalist movements and anti-austerity parties, in Europe and elsewhere, demonstrates the potential of institutional responses to austerity politics. How can we conceptualise these phenomena and their resistances? How can we account for the ways in which such alternative practices have developed? How are we to understand the emergent social imaginaries and processes of subjectification?

The workshop seeks to grapple with these questions and a wide range of related puzzles, as well as to explore the relationship between theoretical categories and empirical analysis in the study of contemporary emancipatory politics.

The workshop is open to 20 PhD students as well as early career researchers with a specialised interest in austerity politics, collective action and emancipatory politics in different fields of study, including political theory, political sociology, human geography and political communication, arts and philosophy.

Applicants should please email Kostis Roussos – – a cover letter explaining how the workshop would benefit their research and an updated CV. The final deadline for all applicants is Sunday, 29 October 2017.

Applicants will be informed of the outcome by email no later than the 5 November. Selected applicants should please email their confirmed attendance by Friday, 10 November 2017.

Financial Support and logistics
The workshop is kindly funded by the Eastern Academic Research Consortium (EARC).
Participants from the University of East Anglia and University of Kent shall be able
to apply for an EARC funding at their universities to cover their travel expenses.
EARC contacts: UEA – Sarah Connolly , Kent – Hannah Swift

We will provide coffee, tea, refreshments and a working lunch to all the participants.