Category Archives: Calls for Proposals

UNAM 2nd International Interdisciplinary Congress on Age and Ageing

The Second International Interdisciplinary Congress on Age and Ageing was held from June 20th to June 22nd, 2017 at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) in Mexico City. The event, organized and led by Veronica Montes de Oca, sociologist and gerontologist, brought together participants from numerous countries and disciplines throughout Latin America, Spain and France, to discuss autonomy, mobility and adaptation in aging. The field of anthropology of aging was well represented, as well as sociology, psychology, philosophy, geriatrics, design and the arts, among others. Continue reading

CFP: Foolish things, clever stuff? The material side of nursing and care

Date: 18th20th January 2017, deadline for abstracts 25 May, 2016

Location: Heidelberg, Germany

Nursing is more than an interpersonal rapport in which individuals are connected to one another in a special relationship. In the course of the organisation of nursing and care – whether in a nursing home, a hospital or at home – a multitude of diverse items are involved, each with their own object-logic. Exactly what these are and how they are perceived by the nursing staff or the patients varies considerably and is dependent for instance upon the setting under consideration or the temporal context. How though, when considered in combination, do things which are neither an arbitrarily applicable means to an end (foolish things) nor as sophisticated troubleshooting all-rounders (clever stuff) – contribute to the construction of nursing and care?

The interdisciplinary and international conference ‘Dumme Dinge, schlaue Sachen?’ (‘Foolish things, clever stuff?’) takes up this question and focuses as well on the things of care: Material objects have until now usually been considered as ‘auxiliary resources’. In academic discussion as well as in collections, museums and exhibitions they remain largely unseen. This conference forms the conclusion of the interdisciplinary research project: ‘Die Pflege der Dinge – Die Bedeutung von Objekten in Geschichte und gegenwärtiger Praxis der Pflege’ (Care and Things – Objects and their Significance in Past and Present Nursing Practice, in brief: Pflegedinge) sponsored by the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research. The central element of the conference is to offer the opportunity for dialogue and for networking among researchers with a focus on material culture studies and researchers with a focus on nursing and care. Along with the presentation and discussion of the central results of the project’s collaborators, the conference is above all aimed at bringing together scientists, researchers and academics from beyond their particular disciplines and beyond national borders, who wish to present object-centred approaches to the following, or similar, issues:

  • How are/were theoretical and conceptual developments in things of care materialised?
  • How do/did individuals and things in nursing and care settings interact? How can/could objects lead to changes within the nursing and care sectors?
  • How do/did new nursing-oriented knowledge and the introduction of new things interact with one another in nursing and care settings?
  • How do/did societal perceptions and arrangements materialise in things of care, and how do/did things contribute to constructing them? Who had/has access to what knowledge? How are/were possible power structures formulated here?
  • (How and why) do things in nursing and care settings contribute to creating or preventing for instance personal privacy, autonomy, safety, normality, intimacy and

Contributions from nursing studies, ethnology, cultural anthropology, gerontology, history, history of nursing, museum studies, social pedagogy and organisational studies, sociology and other, related disciplines would be very welcome.

Contributions may be submitted and presented either in German or English. Please send your abstract (max. 500 words) together with a brief introduction of yourself (max. 50 words) at the latest by 25/5/2016 to:

Further information on this research project can be found at: http://www.

CFP: Morality and Aging (special issue of Anthropology & Aging)

We are seeking additional contributors for a special issue we plan to
propose. Responding to recent trends in ‘moral anthropology’, the issue
will be specifically concerned with moralities in and through the latter
stages of the life course. How, we ask, might moralities intersect with
ageing?Just as the life course is bodily lived and socially shaped so is it
morally mediated. How are the latter stages of the life course mediated,
interpreted, judged, or de/valued with and through moral frames? Meanings
of ‘the good’, for example, may shift with advancing age, while moral
discourses may map how ageing is to be both lived and interpreted. As with
recent ideals of ‘successful ageing’, what it means to grow old may itself
be imbued with moral imperative.While contributions must be ethnographically grounded, we encourage potential contributors to take an exploratory approach to the topic.
The issue is edited by Andrew Dawson and Bryonny Goodwin-Hawkins (The
University of Melbourne), and will be proposed to Anthropology & Aging.Potential contributors should send an abstract (max. 250 words) and a brief
bio to by April 4th.We will notify the selected contributors of the article deadline after the
acceptance of our proposal.

Best wishes,

Bryonny Goodwin-Hawkins

CFP: Evidencing the ageing process: An Anthropology of misfortune, (un)certainty, and risk (AAA 2016, Minneapolis)

If you’re interested please send in your abstract (max. 250 words) to Philip Kao and Jolanda Lindenberg (, before 8 April.

Evidencing the ageing process: An Anthropology of misfortune, (un)certainty, and risk

Organizers: Jolanda Lindenberg, PhD & Philip Y. Kao, PhD

Despite a growing attention to the biomedical and demographic considerations regarding ageing, the uncertainties and articulations in the ageing process remain palpable yet overdetermined. The bodily and biological processes of ageing rely on symptom aetiology that creates, explores, and pathologizes evidence of objectively considered markers.
But these markers are not as certain or naturalized as portrayed. In this session, we explore what older individuals consider evidence and accident of the ageing process. In other words, how do individuals in late-life perceive the nature of misfortune or fortune, and furthermore how do they navigate and make sense of these experiences, including loss and changes in risk perception, for better or worse? As an initial salvo, we suggest that focusing on ideas and practices concerning misfortune provides a window into the phenomenology of ageing in order to tease out the hidden/denied capacities such as late-life style, coping strategies, and resiliency as resources to combat the elective affinities underscoring ageist and other ideological constructions of the ageing process.

The sociological question of misfortune was famously raised by Max Weber to enquire into ways individuals understand their social situation, and we take this forward by exploring the construction of causal explanations, accidents and subsequent responses to misfortune in a variety of contexts. Misfortune has long been studied within the context of medical anthropology and the anthropology of religion. This panel aims to widen this scope by presenting new contexts for research. Of particular interest will be how conceptualizations of taken-for-granted events and “natural” courses of ageing obtain on the one hand, and how ambiguities and uncertainties emerge and resist on the other hand. Often enough, situations such as bodily decline, loss of a spouse, and/or changes in a living situation are considered an inescapable, intrinsic part of the ageing process. But the boundaries between natural or normal and unnatural and abnormal are not always evident in how individuals see and experience ageing. These boundaries will be magnified and scrutinized during this panel. Idioms (Reynolds Whyte), discursive practices (Foucault) and strategies to engage with and interact with misfortune as well as how these interactions gain significance in relations and meaningful social action will be investigated. Ultimately, the construction of ageing can be seen as a complex process involving not just experts and prophetical signifiers, but a symbolic obviation of (un)certainties, claims, prognoses, accidents, evidence and (mis)fortunes.

Keywords: certainty, uncertainty, misfortune, risk, ageing

 Contact Info:

Jolanda Lindenberg:

Philip Kao:

CFP: Ageing in Europe: Beyond the Work-Centered Life Course? (14-16 September, Frankfurt)

In modern European societies, work has become a key aspect in both structuring individual lives as well as in determining socio-economic well-being. Looking at recent ‘active ageing’ reforms, it is intended to become an even more central aspect for older individuals. This work-centred perspective – that also has been reflected in ageing research – provides the starting point for the Conference. It acknowledges work as a main focal point in later life by considering for example the questions of how and how long older people should and could be encouraged to stay active on the labour market. At the same time, it also intends to look at developments in other domains of social life, such as intergenerational relationships, volunteering or leisure. Against this background, the scientific committee particularly encourages submissions of papers on the following topics:
–       (Past-retirement) Activities: Labour Market Participation, Social Encouragement, Advanced Training
–       Retirement: Decisions, Expectations, Legal Framework
–       Social Inequalities: Old-Age Poverty, Ageism, Quality of Life, Dependency, Active Ageing-Policy
–       Images of Ageing: Culture, Values of Age(ing), Ageism, Stereotypes
–       Theoretical Concepts: Concepts of Ageing, Life Course Models, 4th Age

Prof. James Nazroo, University of Manchester, England
Prof. Asghar Zaidi, University of Southampton, England
Assistant Prof. Kathrin Komp, Helsinki University, Finland
Dr. Jonas Radl, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Spain

14.-16. September 2016, Goethe-University Frankfurt

Papers with a cross‐national, comparative focus are particularly welcome. Submissions from early-career researchers are also encouraged. Please note that individuals should not be the first author (i.e. the presenter) of more than one paper.
Abstracts should not exceed 250 words. Please submit electronic pdf-versions of abstracts to until February, the 29th 2016. You will be notified on acceptance of your paper until March, the 31st 2016.

VITAL postdoctoral research fellowship in social studies of medicine: “Associating dementia”

“Associating dementia” (39.5 months from 15 August 2016)

This is an exciting opportunity to join a new research team that will carry out collaborative ethnographic research on the making of quality of life; based in one of Europe’s most vibrant Anthropology departments at the University of Copenhagen and living in one of the world’s best cities. The research project “The Vitality of Disease – Quality of Life in the Making” (VITAL) is hiring a postdoc to commence duties in summer 2016. Funded by the European Research Council, the candidate will contribute to the overall objectives of VITAL ( by carrying out an independent ethnographic study within a predefined problem field. The country and concrete site of the study will depend on the candidate and should be outlined in detail in the application. There are no geographic limitations, and while a strong effort will be made to have a diversity of project countries and sites, the strongest candidate will be offered the position. VITAL postdocs will play a crucial role in the conceptual and methodological innovations required by the project as a collective endeavour. Candidates must hold a PhD degree in anthropology, sociology or science studies. Experience with social studies of medicine is preferred.

Read more and apply here:

Application deadline: 4 April 2016 (at 12:00 PM Danish Time)

CFP: Examining troubling institutions and geographies at the nexus of care and control (10 Feb deadline)

Convenors: Tom Disney (University of Birmingham) and Anna Schliehe (University of Glasgow)

Institutional spaces of care and control can be found in various settings, ranging from psychiatric establishments, centres of migrant detention, prisons, orphanages, but also encompassing environments such as schools or military academies. Building upon previous work into the geography of institutions and geography in institutions (Parr and Philo 2000: 514), we want to explore the complicated and sometimes opaque relationship between care and control. This CFP responds to recent calls in carceral geography (Moran and Turner, AAG 2016) and aims to explore the potential diversity of research in this area. The session intends to collect different perspectives on empirical and theoretical engagements with everyday life in institutional spaces, to examine the troubling relationship between care and control; where one is at risk of being transformed into the other (see Disney 2015, Schliehe 2014). Does care inevitably cede into control? To what degree does this trouble us? Do we wish to trouble our conceptualisation of care and control – shake the ideas from the Foucault’s and the Goffman’s back to life in these ever changing institutional landscapes or find new lenses to unpick these spaces? We are interested in wide ranging perspectives from different sub-fields to discuss this relationship, such as carceral geography, mental health geography, children’s geographies and architectural geography. We also welcome contributions from other disciplinary backgrounds such as criminology or arts-based research to explore innovative methodological approaches and interdisciplinary engagement with the nexus of care and control.

Papers are invited which explore:

  • Institutional spaces where care and control are seen to intersect or collide
  • Methodological approaches, ethics and researcher positionality
  • Conceptual frameworks around institutional geographies
  • Spatiality of places of care and control including tactics, agency and resistance
  • Vulnerable and marginalised groups within institutional spaces of care and control, in particular in relation to age and gender
  • Embodied experiences and corporeal practices
  • Aspects of design and spatial practice
  • Beyond the ‘traditional’ carceral environment – the boarding school, military environments, hospices, care homes

Deadline for submitting abstracts is Wednesday 10th February 2016

Please send abstracts up to a maximum of 250 words and proposed titles (clearly stating name, institution, and contact details) to Tom Disney ( and Anna Schliehe (

Dates: 30 August – 2 September 2016: Location: Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) and Imperial College London

Further details about the conference at:

Ageing and anthropology @EASA2016

Please consider submitting an abstract for one of the two accepted panels on ageing at the EASA2016 Conference in Milan, Italy (July 20-23)! Click the links below the corresponding abstracts to submit your paper proposal. Deadline is Feb 15, 2016

First is a panel organized by AAGE members Jason Danely (Oxford Brookes University, President-Elect, AAGE) and Jolanda Lindenberg (Leyden Academy on Vitality and Ageing, Netherlands).

Re-conceptualizing Kinship and Relatedness in an Ageing World


Within the discipline, critical voices emerging from post-colonial, feminist, queer studies and post-humanism seem to have deconstructed the anthropological category of kinship so comprehensively that it can be difficult to tell where to pick up the pieces. Given the highly mutable bonds of relatedness that characterize anthropological depictions of family life today, the stable structures and patterns of classical kinship appear less compelling, yet empirically, it remains evident that kinship still plays a vital role in the shaping of narratives of the life course and the provision of care.

In this panel we will reconsider kinship on the basis of insights from anthropological studies in societies experiencing rapid population ageing historically unprecedented longevity and declines in fertility. What happens to the conceptualization of kinship as populations become older, live longer, and as forms of their relatedness diversify? How does it give room for “constructed forms of kinship” and “logics of relatedness” (Sahlins 2011: 5)? What happens as we decenter the reproductive nuclear family and try to orient from the perspectives of older persons? Increasing numbers of people living longer also means increases in physical frailty and cognitive impairment, producing new potentials for indebtedness and intimacy, love and abandonment over the life course. Elsewhere, absence of kin due to smaller families, displacement or immigration, creates new spaces for political actors to occupy a more “family-like” role of care in the lives of older people. Our ageing world provokes us to imagine different forms and futures of relationality, affection and embodiment.

Chair: Jason Danely

Propose paper

The second panel also sounds fascinating!
Imagining an Old Future – Anthropological Perspectives on Age and Ageing

Tiina Suopajärvi (University of Helsinki),
Cordula Endter (Institute of European Ethnology/Cultural Anthropology),
Kamilla Nørtoft (University of Copenhagen),

Long Abstract
Ageing is one of the biggest social challenges of our time. In western societies old age is often considered as social and economic problem that needs to be resolved, on the other hand, by the decision-makers, but increasingly also by the elderly themselves. Desirable ageing is mainly pictured as active, healthy and independent. However, in reality ageing adults live their everyday lives in different kinds of communities, multiple socio-material relations and diverse bodies.
Anthropologists are in a crucial position in understanding and disclosing the complexity of age and ageing. However, this may require reconsideration of the methodological, theoretical and empirical knowledge-making within the discipline. What can we know through the existing anthropological practices, and what kinds of knowledge and forms of expression remain hidden? How can new disciplinary and methodological crossings expand our understanding of the heterogeneity of ageing? And further, how can we ensure that the voices of the ageing citizens become heard in their communities and societies? In other words, can, and should, anthropologists become engaged more directly in the policy on ageing? And does this call for, for example, more collaborative and participatory ways of asking questions, or generating and transmitting knowledge?
We invite scholars both from anthropology and other disciplines, as well as people outside academic world to consider the new challenges of ageing. We are looking for lively discussions on theoretical conceptualisations but also on practical, applied perceptions, experiences and practices on what it means to become old in the 21st century.

Propose paper

Conditions and Rules on the Call for Papers for EASA 2016
Deadline: The call for papers is now open and closes at midnight GMT on February 15th, 2016.
Proposing a paper: All proposals must be made via the online form, not by email. Proposals must be made to a specific panel. There is a ‘propose a paper’ link beneath the long abstract of each panel page.

Paper proposals must consist of:

  • a paper title
  • the name/s and email address/es of author/s
  • a short abstract of fewer than 300 characters
  • a long abstract of fewer than 250 words


CFP: Growing old with and via media

 MedieKultur vol. 33, no. 63
Submission deadline: November 1st, 2016
Publication: Fall 2017
Guest editors: Anne Leonora Blaakilde,, University of Copenhagen; Monika Wilińska,, Jönköping University
Issue editor: Sara Mosberg Iversen,, University of Southern Denmark
“Media researchers hate old people” claims the polemic title of an article by Norwegian media scholar Trine Syvertsen (2010). We will not go so far as to suggest that, but do, on the other hand, maintain that older men and women and their media-related practices as well as the mediated representations of old age deserve much more research interest from Media and Communication Studies than they currently get. This is particularly relevant given the growing diversity of media uses and practices on the one hand, and the intensification of public discourses regarding the expected ways of ageing, if not non-ageing, in contemporary socio-economical, political and cultural domains. Therefore, it is crucial to examine these changes as processes that are intertwined. This will facilitate a better understanding of the ways old age is approached in contemporary media texts, technologies, institutions and practices as well as how media in various ways contribute to shaping, managing and negotiating old age both as representations, policy issues and as experiences and practices of everyday life.
In this issue of MedieKultur, we want to explore the processes and practices of growing old with and through media. The particular focus is on the following two questions:
1)    How do media texts and institutions contribute to the maintenance and negotiations of different notions of ageing?
2)    What are the multiple roles of media technologies in old age today in terms of, for instance, memory work, self-monitoring, the rhythm of everyday life, or continuity between work life and retirement among diverse groups of older men and women?
MedieKultur invites theoretical, methodological and empirical inquiries into the interplay between contemporary notions and practices of ageing and media technologies, institutions and texts. Topics and themes for articles can include but are not limited to:
– (The changing) media representations of ageing and old age within diverse media genres.
– Older men and women’s media practices in everyday life or as seen from a life course perspective.
– Media policies related to old age and the ways these are co-constructing notions and practices of ageing.
– Uses of media technologies and applications in the management of old age, for instance as technologies of domination or self.
– Expressions of ageism, that is discrimination or prejudices due to chronological age, in media content, technologies or production.

CFP: Anthropology & Aging special issue on “aging in place and on the move”

5668422609_f8af695939_zDemographers report that older people are more mobile today than they have ever been. Retirement migration is no longer the luxury of the wealthy elite, and is often undertaken as an economic strategy for those unable to afford aging at home. Aging can activate north to south migration for those in search of warmer climes and cheaper healthcare, as well as south to north migration for those who care for and are cared for by younger generations. As people around the world continue to age and live even longer, it will be critical to consider how age, generation and the life course shape the meanings of migration, making homes, and moving and being still.

Just as mobility in later life is becoming more commonplace, staying put is also undergoing a revival of sorts. With a growing and more diverse aging population, the rigid structures of formal and institutional care are providing opportunities to think about what it means to ‘age-in-place’ or to continue occupying a home and a community. What happens then to the family in eldercare as family member share responsibilities with community-based care services, such as a visiting care workers, nurses, and hospice staff? How do these regimes of translocal care create forms of mobility/stagnation around families and older persons? How does this contend with a care staff which is becoming more mobile, surgical, and always on the go?

This special Anthropology & Aging issue will examine immobilities and mobilities, homecoming and making new homes, and aging-in-place and on the move.

Possible topics include

  • aging-in-place – policies, practices, undiscovered research
  • Meanings of community and translocality
  • Neighborhoods and the role of older persons in community and relational governance
  • “Snowbirds” and other migrant elderscapes (e.g. retirement schemes)
  • The topology and dynamics of intergenerational relationships
  • Home visits, care delivery, technologies in and of the home
  • Displacement of older adults, refugees, migrant families
  • Return migration in old age (narratives and practices of homecoming)
  • Roles of older adults in easing immigrant transitions
  • Infrastructures of emplacement and mobility
  • Health/Medical tourism
  • “Active aging” as moving in place

Deadline for all submissions – June 1, 2016

Authors notified of publication status – August 1, 2016

Issue published – November 2016

Full information for authors available on the website

Any questions regarding submissions and the CFP may be directed to: journal@anthropologyandgerontology.


A&A accepts a variety of writing styles and formats, from reflective and conversational commentaries and field reports, to more detailed and elaborate articles and reviews. The best way to get a feeling for this is to browse the archives, which are all available for free on the website.

All submissions are handled digitally. At least one author must register (free) and upload the file on the website. Emailed submissions will no longer be accepted. All submissions should be in Word or Rich Text format, following the American Anthropological Association style guide for citations and references (which is actually the current edition of the Chicago Manual of Style), but otherwise with as little special formatting as possible. We welcome figures, tables, and images but ask that they be submitted separately as supplementary files. Article submissions are desk reviewed before being passed on to a double-blind peer-review process. Other submissions are reviewed by the editorial staff and advisory board. Published work is open-access and protected by Creative Commons copyright.

We encourage submissions from students and early career scholars interested in making sure their work reaches the most established scholars in the anthropology of aging. One way that we try to make our journal accessible to all authors is to avoid expensive publication costs. If an article or commentary is accepted, however, we ask that lead authors become members of AAGE to help defray the cost. We also hope that membership will provide further opportunities to build on successful publication though activities like conferences, social events, blogging, and listserv discussions.